With the foundation of a brand new partnership between Cornell Cooperative Extension and the Hudson Valley Additive Manufacturing Center (HVAMC) at SUNY New Paltz, exciting opportunities for collaborative projects lie within the near future.
One such project, headed by Cornell Cooperative Extension’s Senior Agriculture Resource Educator James (Jim) O’Connell, aims to provide education about the invasive insect spotted lanternfly (Lycorma delicatula), and its threats to New York State agricultural commodities.
Spotted lanternfly is native to China and Southeast Asia and poses a serious threat to New York State crops, including tree fruit, grapes and hops. According to the NYS DEC, the spotted lanternfly was first discovered in Pennsylvania in 2014 and has since been found in New Jersey, Delaware, Maryland and Virginia. To date, no infestations have been confirmed in New York State, but several individual adult insects have since been found in counties across the state.
O’Connell and the team at Cornell Cooperative Extension are collaborating with the Hudson Valley Additive Manufacturing Center (HVAMC) at SUNY New Paltz to design and print true-to-life replicas of the spotted lanternfly in an effort to help farmers identify and report sightings of the species.
“Currently, samples of the spotted lanternfly are collected, killed in rubbing alcohol, dried, mounted, and then distributed to educators inside and outside of the quarantine zones,” said O’Connell. “With the use of the 3D printer we are able to replicate the insect with less risk and at a faster pace.”
According to Dan Freedman, dean of the School of Science & Engineering and director of the HVMAC at SUNY New Paltz, the Center is interested in having more interactions with the local economy — specifically in agriculture — and is excited about the partnership with Cornell Cooperative Extension.
“We have built the HVAMC into a unique academic center that combines design and materials expertise with the most advanced technology 3D printing has to offer, available to everyone from manufacturers to individual inventors,” said Freedman. “This collaborative project is helping to spread awareness and develop game-changing solutions to real-world problems. It’s also a great project to showcase the capabilities of the Stratasys 3D printer.”
Before the replicas can be printed, they need to be designed using digital modeling software. Katherine Wilson, assistant director of the Hudson Valley Additive Manufacturing Center and a New Paltz alumna, created a model of the species using ZBrush animation in seven components — the head, three sets of legs, wings, upper and lower torso — to create depth and complexity.
“This project required a lot of experimental learning,” said Wilson. “Understanding the capabilities of the software and 3D printing technology was critical to the design process and allowed us to create a comprehensive and fast path from idea to generation to creation.”
The Hudson Valley Additive Manufacturing Center at SUNY New Paltz acts as a hub for innovation and a major production facility for companies seeking to print prototypes and manufactured items. Center staff provide expert advice on all aspects of the 3D printing process, making additive manufacturing accessible and realistic for regional businesses and community members. The Center supports the teaching of design in the arts, engineering and the SUNY New Paltz’s Digital Design and Fabrication minor by rapidly creating prototypes and consulting on materials and processes. Its collection of 3D printers constitute some of the most advanced technology at any academic lab in the country. To date, the Center has worked with more than 300 regional businesses and academic programs, on a wide variety of industrial, engineering and design projects.
If you think you have found spotted lanternfly, take a photo and send it to email@example.com along with the location of the find. The location can be a street address, intersecting streets, or GPS coordinates. If you can capture the insect, you can kill it by putting it in a vial of hand sanitizer or alcohol. You can also put it in a bag and place it in the freezer. It is important to keep the specimen for positive identification when someone comes to confirm the findings.
Last updated February 7, 2020