REUTERS/Yuya Shino - A staff member of Nihonbinary points to their 3D printer MakerBot Replicator 2 printing a Polylactic acid bracelet as he demonstrates the printer during the International Robot Exhibition 2013 in Tokyo November 8, 2013.

Blog Post | Advanced Industries Series

‘Printed’ Car Shows How Energy Labs Can Work Regionally

September 17, 2014, Scott Andes and Mark Muro

Last week we argued that the Department of Energy’s national laboratories can contribute more to the nation’s technology growth by engaging more with the local industry ecosystems in which they are located. But what exactly would such engagement look like? And how such would it facilitate greater economic activity? Coincidentally, an intriguing glimpse of the proposed future came last week from the International Manufacturing Technology Show in Chicago where the Phoenix company Local Motors Inc. undertook to “print” one of the first-ever automobiles produced through 3-D printing, as reported by the Wall Street Journal. As it happens, the car represents the fruit of an exemplary partnership between Local Motors and Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s Manufacturing Development Facility (MDF).

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