Everywhere will be able to make everything

In the weeks surrounding Super Bowl LIII, there were myriad conversations about the head trauma that is intrinsic to the game of football. Nothing new there. We’ve been having the concussion discussion for years now.

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But there was one storyline—a positive one—that bubbled up this year. California-based Carbon, a leader in the additive-manufacturing space, partnered with sports-gear manufacturer Riddell to launch a line of custom football-helmet inserts (shown above) intended to reduce the severity of hits to the head. “The tunable lattice liner also addresses precise needs related to movement, energy management, stability and comfort,” according to Riddell.

Translation: less bells rung. This newsworthy product launch is a win for wide receivers, of course, but also a bellwether for the maturation of additive manufacturing—the growth of strategic applications of 3D printing.

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