…Prof. Krishnan Suresh’s team at the University of Wisconsin has now shared a very useful piece of software that will significantly reduce printing time and expenses: Cloud Topology Optimization. This handy program will allow you to easily optimize the size and shape of your STL files without sacrificing durability or functionality. Their method relies on high performance finite element analysis and cutting-edge topology optimization to remove unnecessary material prior to printing.
As the figures illustrate, you can simply upload the STL file of your choice and adjust its settings, after which the software will easily and quickly (visually) modify your design to its optimal shape. Additional constraints such as symmetry can also be imposed to guide the software towards a preferred design. The final design, often computed in less than a minute, can be saved in a standard STL format for 3D printing. This will not only save you hours in printing time, but also in design. For a complete tutorial on the software’s functions and abilities, check out this YouTube-based tutorial.
Until now, Cloud Topology Optimization was only available for desktops, either as a standalone, or embedded within SolidWorks. But it can also be accessed from the comfort of a browser at www.cloudtopopt.com. The software is supported on most browsers including Firefox, Chrome and Opera, Internet Explorer (partial support) and Safari (with WebGL enabled)….
Every Thursday is #3dthursday here at Adafruit! The DIY 3D printing community has passion and dedication for making solid objects from digital models. Recently, we have noticed electronics projects integrated with 3D printed enclosures, brackets, and sculptures, so each Thursday we celebrate and highlight these bold pioneers!
Have you considered building a 3D project around an Arduino or other microcontroller? How about printing a bracket to mount your Raspberry Pi to the back of your HD monitor? And don’t forget the countless LED projects that are possible when you are modeling your projects in 3D!
Adafruit has had paid day off for voting for our team for years, if you need help getting that going for your organization, let us know – we can share how and why we did this as well as the good results. Here are some resources for voting by mail, voting in person, and some NY resources for our NY based teams as well. If there are additional resources to add, please let us know – adafruit.com/vote
Stop breadboarding and soldering – start making immediately! Adafruit’s Circuit Playground is jam-packed with LEDs, sensors, buttons, alligator clip pads and more. Build projects with Circuit Playground in a few minutes with the drag-and-drop MakeCode programming site, learn computer science using the CS Discoveries class on code.org, jump into CircuitPython to learn Python and hardware together, TinyGO, or even use the Arduino IDE. Circuit Playground Express is the newest and best Circuit Playground board, with support for CircuitPython, MakeCode, and Arduino. It has a powerful processor, 10 NeoPixels, mini speaker, InfraRed receive and transmit, two buttons, a switch, 14 alligator clip pads, and lots of sensors: capacitive touch, IR proximity, temperature, light, motion and sound. A whole wide world of electronics and coding is waiting for you, and it fits in the palm of your hand.