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MATERIALS IN DESIGN & PROTOTYPING FEATURE


which possesses a high strength-to- weight ratio and is also FST compliant. With this material – combined with hardware solutions developed to address specific industry issues, such as our Aircraft Interiors Solution – aerospace organisations can now get more parts certified for flight, much faster.


AUTOMOTIVE DEMANDS With calls for improved fuel efficiency, ever-present environmental and political pressures, and decentralised production, the drivers in the automotive market are just as tough – with demands, for example, for crash-safe automotive parts. Material development is a constant at Stratasys, with new materials, such as our recently-introduced Carbon Fiber reinforced Nylon12 opening up applications in automotive that were previously impossible. 3D printing composite materials like this provide the strength of metal, with the light weight of plastic. Additive manufacturing not only offers the option of lightweight parts, but the ability to also optimise performance-to-weight ratios through complex geometric designs with advanced software and hardware capabilities, which cannot be achieved by other methods. These benefits are underscored by users across the automotive industry and include Formula 1 racing team, McLaren. With Stratasys FDM additive manufacturing, McLaren was able to produce a new race-car wing in under two weeks using a 3D printed ULTEM1010 composite mould tool to create the shape of the wing. Similarly, Volvo Trucks in France is using our FDM solutions to design durable yet


supply chain. With the previously- mentioned ULTEM 9085 material, we’ve already ensured this.


lightweight clamps, jigs, supports and tool holders for its production facility in Lyon. 3D printing customised tools for direct use on the factory floor, Volvo Trucks estimates that for small quantities of tools, the cost of 3D printing ABS thermoplastic tools can be as little as 1€/cm³, while making the same item from metal costs 100€/cm³. Crucially, Volvo Trucks has reduced the time taken to design and manufacture certain assembly line tools traditionally produced in metal by more than 94%, from 36 days to just two days using FDM 3D additive manufacturing. By considering the automotive and aerospace industries, we have identified one of the key issues facing the adoption of additive manufacturing today. The application focus is constantly shifting from rapid prototyping to tooling, to final production parts. As this trend continues, we need traceability to guarantee a secure and dependable


Volvo Trucks in France is using Stratasys’ FDM solutions to design durable yet lightweight clamps, jigs, supports and tool holders for its production facility in Lyon


HEALTHCARE Many hospitals are using 3D printing to enhance patient care and improve surgical practices. Hospitals such as the Queen Elizabeth in Birmingham and the University Hospital Basel, Switzerland, have seen dramatic time and cost-related savings when producing 3D printed medical models using our precision PolyJet technology. With Queen Elizabeth reporting a staggering £20,000 saving per surgery which it is able to reinvest into other areas of the hospital, and the University Hospital Basel reducing surgical time by over a third, 3D printing is playing a crucial role in elevating the standard of patient care at both hospitals.


WHERE NEXT? Within design, the greater the ability for a material to match the final end-use part in mechanical, thermal and chemical properties, the greater its likelihood to perform like the final part, and the greater the efficiency of the design process. In production, material properties are crucial to ensure functionality, consistency, surface smoothness, quality and traceability. For this area, material development is a top priority and ongoing challenge. By collecting requirements from our customers and encouraging innovation in our labs, we’re staying close to market needs and therefore the biggest demands.


Many hospitals are using 3D printing to enhance patient care and improve surgical practices


Stratasys www.stratasys.com


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