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3D PRINTING


according to research for Wohlers Report 2016. This is up from 49 manufacturers the year before. Ricoh has partnered with Aspect of Japan to develop and commercialize the AM S5500P laser sintering (LS) machine. The product’s build volume is 21.7 × 21.7 × 19.7" (550 × 550 × 500 mm) and is priced at ¥75 million (about $658,000). In September 2015, China’s Farsoon partnered with France’s Prodways to add new powder bed fusion


duced the MetalFAB1 with a build volume of 16.5 × 16.5 × 15.8" (420 × 420 × 400 mm). The system can be confi g- ured with up to 11 modules and includes automated build plate handling, excess powder removal, and two build chambers. The base price of the product is €1.1 million. Massivit3D of Israel offers a system that produces parts as large as 3 × 3.8 × 4.6' (1.2 × 1.5 × 1.8 m). Due to its rela- tively low resolution, the system is not suitable for many AM markets. However, it may appeal to the producers of theme parks, fi lms, props for theater performances, large sculptures, marketing/advertising, and possibly furniture. Several fast ma-


A 3D-printed circuit board from Nano Dimension, an Israeli company focused on AM for electronics.


machines to the market. Prodways introduced a family of systems, called the “Prodways powered by Farsoon” ProMaker P series, in early 2016. Prodways is also selling Farsoon’s thermoplastic powders


.. Other LS machines are emerging, in part as a result of the


expired foundation patents for selective laser sintering at the University of Texas at Austin. This year, Sintratec (Switzerland) is expected to ship its S1 LS machine that builds parts that fi t in a 5.9 × 5.9 × 7.9" (150 × 150 × 200 mm) build volume. The introductory price is €9,000. Sinterit (Poland) is introducing its Lisa LS machine, which is similar in size to Sintratec’s product and is priced at €7,000. Meanwhile, Sentrol, a CNC machine tool company in South Korea, is launching a large machine for around $300,000 that is capable of producing parts in plastic, metal, and sand (for casting molds and cores). Other large machines are developing and coming to market. Additive Industries of the Netherlands has intro-


48 AdvancedManufacturing.org | May 2016


chines that produce parts in photopolymer are being commercial- ized. Receiving the most attention over the past year is Car- bon (USA), a company that rolled out a new machine based on its Continuous Liquid Interface Production (CLIP) technology. It


is said to be up to 100 times faster than other AM machines. Meanwhile, Carima (South Korea) has announced Continu- ous Additive 3D Printing Technology (C-CAT), an alternative photopolymer process that builds at a rate of up to 60 cm (24") per hour, in the vertical direction. This is four times fast- er than the reported build speed of Carbon’s CLIP process. Others that are developing fast photopolymer machine technology include NewPro3D of Canada, Nexa3D of Italy, and Gizmo of Australia. All three have made bold claims about the high speed of their respective processes. More machines are on the horizon, too. Three well-known companies are preparing to launch new products. Before the end of this year, HP is expected to ship a product based on its Multi Jet Fusion technology. The thermoplastic parts resemble those made by LS, but are built at 10x the speed. Multicolor and special physical properties, such as electrical conductiv- ity, are also in the plans. Canon plans to commercialize an AM


Photo courtesy Nano Dimension


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