Staples offers customized 3D printing
Last week, office supplies chain Staples launched an online platform where users can upload own designs to be transformed into 3D models. The new service is powered by online 3D printing company Sculpteo and aims to help beginners to understand the technology. It is accompanied by a store offering 3D printed items like paperweights and picture frames.
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Sappi expands in niche packaging
To counter declining prospects for its traditional glossy paper business, Johannesburg-based paper company Sappi is expanding into specialty packaging. The company will be using its expertise in applying coatings to paper for luxury magazines and advertising literature for the production of high-end packaging for products ranging from cosmetics to consumer electronics.
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Autodesk open sources the Ember 3D Printer
Software and hardware giant Autodesk recently made the schematics and firmware for its 3D printer Ember open source and available for download. The printer’s electronics — design files, schematics and PCBs, bill of materials, approved vendor lists, and assembly drawings — are licensed as Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike and the firmware as GNU GPL. Previously, Autodesk had shared Ember’s mechanical designs and even the recipe for the resin it uses.
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Czech Republic: a PET bottle recycling leader
In less than a decade, the Czech Republic has doubled the volume of plastics being recycled. This puts the country in second place when it comes to recycling plastic PET bottles and in fourth place when looking at Europe’s overall packaging recycling performance. Recently, the Czech Republic has recorded a 30% recycling rate compared to 7% at the beginning of the millennium. According to analyst Vojtěch Kotecký of the think-tank Glopolis, the country has been transformed into „one of the leaders“ when it comes to plastic bottle recycling.
More at Recycling International

Saxoprint aims to triple UK turnover in three years
Saxoprint’s UK division is aiming to grow sales to €25m (£18.2m) over the next three years, up from around €8.5m this year. The company, which has subsidiaries in France, Switzerland, Italy and the UK, as well as its main operation in Germany, is owned by photo and online print service giant CEWE. Managing director Daniel Ackermann said he believed there was huge opportunity to drive existing commercial and wide-format trade business in the UK online, mirroring the trend seen in Germany over the past decade.
More at Printweek

UV ink curing on the way forward
In the graphics industry LEDs are used for curing UV inks in both analogue and digital printing systems. The technology has various advantages like low energy consumption and long life. An article from Fespa explains how UV-curable inks work and what you can gain from printing with them.
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New on the drupa blog: Upcycling provides business opportunities
Recycling programs have been effective to a degree but a growing number of businesses specialize in re-using materials and turning them into new items that have a long useful life. Green Toys and Preserve are just two examples of companies that view discarded packaging as an opportunity rather than a problem.
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