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Appeared on: Friday, November 22, 2013
Motorola Inks 3D Printing Deal For Customizable Smartphone Parts

3D Systems has entered into a development agreement with Google' s Motorola Mobility to create a high-speed 3D printing production platform and fulfilment system in support of Motorola's Project Ara.

Project Ara aims to develop highly-custom, modular smartphones that afford users the opportunity to make functional and aesthetic choices about their device.

"With Project Ara, we asked the question, 'How do we bring the benefits of customization and an open hardware ecosystem to 6 billion people?' That is our driving application. It requires technical advances in areas such as material strength and printing with conductive inks for antennas. And those advances must support production-level speeds and volumes, which is a natural partnership with 3D Systems," said Regina Dugan, Senior Vice President and head of Motorola's Advanced Technology & Projects group.

3D Systems plans to expand its multi-material printing capabilities including conductive and functional materials. The company also plans to combine additive and subtractive manufacturing methods, and deliver an integrated high-speed production platform. Pending successful completion of the development phase, 3D Systems is expected to manufacture 3D-printed Ara smartphone enclosures and modules as Motorola?s exclusive partner.

3D printing involves taking a plastic filament, melting it and spitting it out to make parts.




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