Additive manufacturing, also known as 3D printing, allows objects of almost any shape or geometry to be manufactured from digital model data. One value of 3D printing for SSL is the ability to design custom lighting fixtures that match the architectural features of a building and then “print” or manufacture them on-site for quick installation. 3D printing also can be beneficially utilized at the fixture component level. With 3D printing of fixtures, heat sinks can be designed to be part of the fixture envelope rather than attached afterwards, which would reduce the fixture’s bulk size and cost and improve its attractiveness.
The LRC has recently established an alliance among researchers and manufacturers to help overcome the technical barriers impeding the use of 3D printing and make it a viable resource for the SSL industry. Key stakeholders are coming together to develop a roadmap for transforming the industry to provide custom lighting fixtures, on-site and on-demand, that will elevate the appearance, value, and experience of the built environment. The Additive Manufacturing for Lighting Consortiumwill enable a collaborative process to define, plan, and develop this roadmap for lighting practice, allowing for a major transformation toward a business model of custom, value-added lighting fixtures.
For more information about participating with the LRC in its 3D printing research, contact N. Narendran, firstname.lastname@example.org or (518) 276-7176.