Rapid prototyping and manufacturing

Rapid prototyping and manufacturing

Rapid Prototyping: That's Fast 


Rapid prototyping is the automatic construction of physical objects with 3D printers, stereolithography machines or special laser sintering systems. Still relatively new, the technology quickly produces models that are able to capture even the finest details of, for example, a person's facial gestures.

Rafiq Noorani, LMU professor of mechanical engineering since 1989, studies computer-aided design / computer-aided manufacturing, rapid prototyping and nanotechnology. Noorani’s newest book, “Rapid Prototyping: Principles and Applications,” was published September 23 by John Wiley Press.

According to Noorani, “the publication is unique because it is the first thorough textbook on the subject of rapid prototyping that will give students a solid understanding of the topic.” This type of technology is still relatively new, LMU is fortunate to have dedicated professionals like Noorani who develop programs and concepts that provide students with the most cutting-edge theories.

But what is rapid prototyping? Imagine a machine that can produce 3D models with a likeness that can capture the essence of a person’s subtle gesture. By inputting data into a computer, the information is processed by the rapid prototype machine and a life-like, plastic model is produced in full color.

Industrial companies or government labs might use this technology to test the form, fit and function of a product before it is widely produced for the masses. Noorani’s publication goes into detail with case studies and research about this evolving engineering technology. He attributes the book’s success to the support of his colleagues and students.

The textbook is being used as a secondary text for “Computer-aided Manufacturing” and as a supplemental text for “Engineering Design Graphics.”