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3D Printing Industry

Honeywell and SLM Solutions qualify parameters for 3D printing thicker aluminum aerospace parts 

German metal 3D printer manufacturer SLM Solutions has worked with the aerospace division of multinational manufacturing conglomerate Honeywell, to produce a parameter set for 3D printing aluminum F357.  Developed as part of the companies’ ongoing partnership, the material reportedly provides  3D printed parts with considerably improved properties compared to those created through die-casting methods. In […]

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Author: Paul Hanaphy

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3D Printing Industry

Zortrax 3D printers used to create Cyberpunk 2077 inspired cosplay outfits 

German costume company Lightning Cosplay has utilized Zortrax desktop 3D printers to create a range of video game-inspired costumes, including outfits influenced by the upcoming open-world RPG Cyberpunk 2077.  The two-person enterprise based in the city of Mönchengladbach, makes tailor-made outfits for customers which allow them to impersonate their favorite characters from books, games or […]

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Author: Paul Hanaphy

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3D Printing Industry

Kumovis closes €3.6 million Series A funding round with PEEK medical 3D printing

Kumovis, a German medical 3D printing startup, has announced that it has raised €3.6 million in a Series A funding round. The round was led by two additional partners in Renolit SE, the manufacturer of thermoplastic films, and Solvay Ventures, the Venture Capital fund of Belgian chemical company Solvay. Stéphane Roussel, Managing Director of Solvay […]

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Author: Anas Essop

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ScienceDaily

Quantum Hall effect ‘reincarnated’ in 3D topological materials

U.S. and German physicists have found surprising evidence that one of the most famous phenomena in modern physics — the quantum Hall effect — is “reincarnated” in topological superconductors that could be used to build fault-tolerant quantum computers.

The 1980 discovery of the quantum Hall effect kicked off the study of topological orders, electronic states with “protected” patterns of long-range quantum entanglement that are remarkably robust. The stability of these protected states is extremely attractive for quantum computing, which uses quantum entanglement to store and process information.

In a study published online this month in Physical Review X (PRX), theoretical physicists from Rice University, the University of California, Berkeley (UC Berkeley), and the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) in Karlsruhe, Germany, presented strong numerical evidence for a surprising link between 2D and 3D phases of topological matter. The quantum Hall effect was discovered in 2D materials, and laboratories worldwide are in a race to make 3D topological superconductors for quantum computing.

“In this work we’ve shown that a particular class of 3D topological superconductors should exhibit ‘energy stacks’ of 2D electronic states at their surfaces,” said Rice co-author Matthew Foster, an associate professor of physics and astronomy and member of the Rice Center for Quantum Materials (RCQM). “Each of these stacked states is a robust ‘reincarnation’ of a single, very special state that occurs in the 2D quantum Hall effect.”

The quantum Hall effect was first measured in two-dimensional materials. Foster uses a “percolation” analogy to help visualize the strange similarities between what occurs in 2D quantum Hall experiments and the study’s 3D computational models.

“Picture a sheet of paper with a map of rugged peaks and valleys, and then imagine what happens as you fill that landscape with water,” he said. “The water is our electrons, and when the level of fluid is low, you just have isolated lakes of electrons. The lakes are disconnected from one another, and the electrons can’t conduct across the bulk. If water level is high, you have isolated islands, and in this case the islands are like the electrons, and you also don’t get bulk conduction.”

In Foster’s analogy the rugged landscape is the electric potential of the 2D material, and the level of ruggedness corresponds to amount of impurities in the system. The water level represents the “Fermi energy,” a concept in physics that refers to the filling level of electrons in a system. The edges of the paper map are analogous to the 1D edges that surround the 2D material.

“If you add water and tune the fluid level precisely to the point where you have little bridges of water connecting the lakes and little bridges of land connecting the islands, then it’s as easy to travel by water or land,” Foster said. “That is the percolation threshold, which corresponds to the transition between topological states in quantum Hall. This is the special 2D state in quantum Hall.

“If you increase the fluid level more, now the electrons are trapped in isolated islands, and you’d think, ‘Well, I have the same situation I had before, with no conduction.’ But, at the special transition, one of the electronic states has peeled away to the edge. Adding more fluid doesn’t remove the edge state, which can go around the whole sample, and nothing can stop it.”

The analogy describes the relationship between robust edge conduction and bulk fine-tuning through the special transition in the quantum Hall effect. In the PRX study, Foster and co-authors Bjo?rn Sbierski of UC Berkeley and Jonas Karcher of KIT studied 3D topological systems that are similar to the 2D landscapes in the analogy.

“The interesting stuff in these 3D systems is also only happening at the boundary,” Foster said. “But now our boundaries aren’t 1D edge states, they are 2D surfaces.”

Using “brute-force numerical calculations of the surface states,” Sbierski, Karcher and Foster found a link between the critical 2D quantum Hall state and the 3D systems. Like the 1D edge state that persists above the transition energy in 2D quantum Hall materials, the calculations revealed a persistent 2D boundary state in the 3D systems. And not just any 2D state; it is exactly the same 2D percolation state that gives rise to 1D quantum Hall edge states.

“What was a fine-tuned topological quantum phase transition in 2D has been ‘reincarnated’ as the generic surface state for a higher dimensional bulk,” Foster said. “In 2018 study, my group identified an analogous connection between a different, more exotic type of 2D quantum Hall effect and the surface states of another class of 3D topological superconductors. With this new evidence, we are now confident there is a deep topological reason for these connections, but at the moment the mathematics remain obscure.”

Topological superconductors have yet to be realized experimentally, but physicists are trying to create them by adding impurities to topological insulators. This process, known as doping, has been widely used to make other types of unconventional superconductors from bulk insulators.

“We now have evidence that three of the five 3D topological phases are tied to 2D phases that are versions of the quantum Hall effect, and all three 3D phases could be realized in ‘topological superconductors,'” Foster said.

Foster said conventional wisdom in condensed matter physics has been that topological superconductors would each host only one protected 2D surface state and all other states would be adversely affected by unavoidable imperfections in the solid-state materials used to make the superconductors.

But Sbierski, Karcher and Foster’s calculations suggest that isn’t the case.

“In quantum Hall, you can tune anywhere and still get this robust plateau in conductance, due to the 1D edge states,” Foster said. “Our work suggests that is also the case in 3D. We see stacks of critical states at different energy levels, and all of them are protected by this strange reincarnation of the 2D quantum Hall transition state.”

The authors also set the stage for experimental work to verify their findings, working out details of how the surface states of the 3D phases should appear in various experimental probes.

“We provide precise statistical ‘fingerprints’ for the surface states of the topological phases,” Foster said. “The actual wave functions are random, due to disorder, but their distributions are universal and match the quantum Hall transition.”

The research was supported by a National Science Foundation CAREER grant (1552327), the German National Academy of Sciences Leopoldina (LPDS 2018-12), a KIT research travel grant, German state graduate funding and the UC Berkeley Library’s Berkeley Research Impact Initiative.

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3D Printing Industry

voxeljet posts financial results for Q4 and FY 2019

German 3D printer manufacturer voxeljet AG (NYSE:VJET) has announced its financial results for the fourth quarter and full year ended December 31, 2019. The company’s total revenue for the full year was posted at €24.6 million, a 5.4 percent decrease from FY2018, which was €26 million. However, its Q4 2019 revenue increased by 11.4 percent […]

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Author: Anas Essop

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3D Printing Industry

SLM Solutions posts Q1 2020 financial results with record first quarter

German metal 3D printer manufacturer SLM Solutions Group AG has reported its financial earnings for the first quarter 2020.  Total revenue for Q1 2020 was reported at €17.8 million, on the back of the strong order backlog at the end of 2019. The results are more than double the revenue generated by the company during […]

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Author: Anas Essop

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3D Printing Industry

Evonik launches new PEEK filament suitable for 3D printing medical implants 

German specialty chemicals company Evonik has introduced its new Vestakeep i4 3DF implant grade polyether ether ketone (PEEK) filament into its portfolio of 3D printing materials. Having met ASTM F2026 requirements, the industry standard for surgical implant applications, the new material will allow for the production of 3D plastic surgical implants using Fused Filament Fabrication […]

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Author: Paul Hanaphy

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3D Printing Industry

Heraeus and TRUMPF to advance applications of amorphous metals in additive manufacturing

Amorphous metal specialists Heraeus AMLOY is working with German machine tool manufacturer TRUMPF to advance the use of 3D printed amorphous parts for production. By improving process and cost efficiencies of the material in additive manufacturing, the companies aim to establish the 3D printing of amorphous parts as a standard production method on the shop […]

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Author: Anas Essop

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3D Printing Industry

Eight industrial partners set to work on modular hybrid manufacturing system

A joint research project funded by the German Federal Ministry for Education and Research (BMBF) will see the development of a new highly efficient modular hybrid manufacturing cell. The eight-partner ProLMD project was initiated four years ago, with the initial aim of producing new hybrid manufacturing processes that combine conventional methods with the laser material […]

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Author: Kubi Sertoglu

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3D Printing Industry

Würth signs agreement with Markforged to distribute 3D printers

Würth, the German distributor of fasteners, MRO and safety equipment, has signed a deal with Markforged, the US manufacturers of composite and metal 3D printers, to sell 3D printers to its customers in North America.  The deal will allow Würth to provide Markforged 3D printers to its customers in the general manufacturing market, as well […]

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Author: Paul Hanaphy