Press release submitted on behalf of Manufacturing Business Technology.

Hull is being honored for the invention, development and commercialization of Stereolithography.

By Industrial Media Staff

3D Systems announced Charles Hull, its co-founder and chief technology officer for regenerative medicine, has received the National Medal of Technology and Innovation (NMTI).

Established in 1980, the NMTI is the United States’ highest honor for technological achievement, awarded by the President of the United States for contributions to America’s economic, environmental and social well-being. Hull is being honored for the invention, development and commercialization of Stereolithography (SLA), which launched the 3D printing industry and for continuing innovation and leadership in additive manufacturing technology.

Hull was Vice President of Engineering at UVP, Inc. (now owned by Analytik Jena), a company that manufactures ultraviolet light sources for industrial and scientific applications when he began working on a way to fuse UV resins into three-dimensional structures to create product prototypes. In 1983, he produced the first 3D-printed part, an eye wash cup, using Stereolithography. Hull applied for a patent for this technology, and in 1986 he co-founded 3D Systems through which the SLA-1, the first 3D printer, was commercialized. With the founding of 3D Systems, he initiated the 3D printing industry.

In 2014, Hull was inducted into the National Inventors Hall of Fame at the United States Patent and Trademark Office for his globally impactful and transformative work inventing and pioneering 3D printing. The same year, he received the European Patent Office’s prestigious European Inventor Award in the non-European countries category for his contributions to technological progress and the advancement of society. 

In 2016, Hull received the Manufacturing Leadership Lifetime Achievement Award from Frost & Sullivan’s Manufacturing Leadership Council, and The American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME) honored him and named the SLA-1, the first commercial 3D printer, a Historic Mechanical Engineering Landmark. He also received The Economist’s prestigious 2013 Innovation Award, recognizing significant contributions across the fields of science and technology. Mr. Hull is a named inventor on 85 United States patents, plus numerous other patents around the world in the fields of ion optics and 3D printing.

3D Systems remains a leader in innovation with state-of-the-art production 3D printers, materials, software and application experts that have changed how products are manufactured and healthcare is delivered. As 3D Systems’ Chief Technology Officer for Regenerative Medicine, Mr. Hull continues to bring his pioneering spirit to the next frontier of 3D printing — bioprinting. He leads the 3D Systems team collaborating with United Therapeutics in a joint development program to establish an unlimited supply of human lungs, requiring no immunosuppression, potentially allowing patients with end-stage lung disease to benefit from an unlimited supply of tolerable, transplantable organs.

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