Tech Tuesday: Slice Engineering

In this week's Tech Tuesday we will show you how slice engineering is developing a new wave of design and production in this growing field of 3D printing.
Published: May. 23, 2023 at 4:19 PM EDT
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GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) - Happy Tech Tuesday. I’m Melanie Moron with UF Innovative. Today, I’m back here with Slice Engineering with Dan Barousse. Dan, thanks so much for joining us again.

Thanks for having me back on the show.

Explain to us, what is Slice Engineering?

Yeah, so Slice Engineering is a 3D printing company. We make printheads for 3D printers all around the world.

And what technologies are you guys using?

We work only with polymers, thermal polymers that are used to create plastics, plastic parts for all sorts of industries, from aerospace to automotive, medical. Basically anything you can name where 3D printing is utilized, we’re there.

And show us an example of a product that’s being used right now.

This is a very fast printhead. It’s actually the world’s fastest what’s called FDM, or filament deposition modeling, printhead. It does about half a kilo an hour of plastic throughput, which is about five times what a normal printhead would be able to do. So we’re very excited about this. We just launched it a couple weeks ago at North America’s largest additive manufacturing trade show in Chicago.

And how is 3D printing changing the world of technology?

It’s changing a lot of things in technology, actually. So basically anywhere where products are being manufactured or designed, any physical product, is being affected by 3D printing and the evolution of 3D printing. 3D printing is getting faster. It is replacing some of the traditional manufacturing methods, and it’s making it much less expensive and much faster for products to get to market. So everything from consumer goods to healthcare, I mean, everything is really being changed.

An interesting example would be we have a customer down in Guatemala that is printing prosthetics for people with limb deficiencies that would not normally be able to afford those prosthetics, and in the United States might cost tens or 20 thousands of dollars. And they’re able to do it for less than $100, typically, to create a limb prosthetic. So pretty amazing difference in price there in how you can use this technology and deploy it in a very cost-effective manner.

And how has being here in Gainesville helped the success of Slice Engineering?

We’ve been really impressed with the innovation ecosystem here at UF Innovate. We love being part of the ecosystem. The connections that you can make, the synergies working with other companies in the area have been really instrumental in helping us grow.

With the rapid increase of AI, how is that influencing the 3D printing market?

It’s having a lot of effect, actually. Obviously, most companies are now using AI in some capacity on the script writing side or copywriting side, generating content, things like that. But it’s also being utilized in control feedback systems in 3D printers to examine parts that are in the process of being produced and basically predicting failures before they occur, or seeing failures as they occur and alerting an operator so that an operator can come in and save the print from failing, essentially. So there’s a lot of interesting applications where AI is being used on the design side and on the actual process production side, and it’s going to continue to grow in that regard.

And what’s next?

Well, we just this year were named number five on the Gator100 list, which we’re very excited about. We hope to continue to grow and expand into new markets, continue to push the limits of how fast things can be 3D printed with polymers. We’re already leading that charge and want to continue to do that.

Well, Dan, it’s been a pleasure having you back.

Yeah, thank you, Melanie. And that’s it for today’s Tech Tuesday. We’ll see you next time.

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