Home Industry 3D Pioneers Challenge – Pioneering innovations at Rapid.Tech 3D in Erfurt

3D Pioneers Challenge – Pioneering innovations at Rapid.Tech 3D in Erfurt

The Rapid.Tech 3D trade fair in Erfurt provided a platform for the additive manufacturing industry for the 20th time and attracted numerous visitors with the 3D Pioneers Challenge. The international competition for additive manufacturing and pioneering technologies took place for the ninth time and presented exciting innovations from 25 countries.

At the special 3D Pioneers Challenge area, 43 finalists showcased their latest projects. The submissions ranged from young start-ups to universities and established companies. This year’s competition emphasized a “collaborative mindset” to promote groundbreaking innovations for business, industry and sustainability.

One highlight was the Chromatic Dress by Dutch FashionTech designer Anouk Wipprecht, whose LEDs react to movement. In the “Fashion” category, the British team around “Balena X Variable Seams” won with a filigree and sustainable fashion concept.

The German start-up WILLOWPRINT impressed in the “Material” category with printable material made from wood waste that is processed into sustainable seating. The project also won in the overarching focus “Sustainability”.

WAVEHOUSE, the largest 3D building in Europe printed on site in Heidelberg, was awarded in the “Architecture” category. Artificial intelligence also conquered 3D printing: the Sketchurizer team demonstrated live how a 3D object is created from a sketch.

For the first time, the “Electronics” category provided the main prize winner. Akilesh Gaharwar from the USA won with “3D Printed Electronic Skin”, which imitates the flexibility and sensitivity of human skin and offers numerous applications in robotics, wearables and healthcare.

The Munich-based start-up Fidentis won in the “MedTech” category with a scalable solution that enables cost-efficient dental treatments. The “Industrial” category was won by “EconitWood” from additive tectonics in Germany, which rethinks the recycling of wood scraps for large-format architectural products.

In total, prizes worth over 175,000 euros were awarded, including 35,000 euros in prize money from the Thuringian Ministry of Economic Affairs, Science and Digital Society. In addition to 10,000 euros in prize money, the main prize winner received the limited 3DPC Trophy. Other prizes included software licenses, coaching and 3D printers.

To mark the 20th anniversary of Rapid.Tech 3D, the gala evening was celebrated in the Kaisersaal, where Economics Minister Wolfgang Tiefensee and Exhibition Director Michael Kynast honored the award winners. Rapid.Tech 3D has once again provided significant impetus for the additive manufacturing industry and offered exciting insights into the future of this technology.

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