Day three of FORMNEXT 2016, the catch-up of Additive Manufacturing & 3D-printing industry
Xjet presented its new NanoParticleJetting™ technology.
The Material (metal or ceramics) is jetted in a liquid with a poly-jet but at temperatures up to 300 degrees.
The sub-micron / nano-particles allowing layer thicknesses as low as 3 microns, that’s 0,000118811 inches.
So far there have been very few technologies around to reach this high level of detail and accuracy. A second material is deposited, acting as support material, allowing overhanging sections. No details on materials, post processing or the price of the system have been disclosed.
Parts created with NanoParticleJetting™ technology
HP presented it’s Multi Jet Fusion™ 3D printing technology. The actual launch was earlier this year already.
At FORMNEXT HP had a huge booth with a movie theater and multiple systems plus auxiliary systems on show.
So it was interesting to have a closer look at the machines and parts. The specs can be found here but it is all about speed and cost of materials. HP states an up to 10 times higher build speed to comparable technologies and affordable materials. The HP Jet Fusion 3D Processing Station with Fast Cooling unit doubles production/output speed as two jobs can be processed instead of one within 24 hrs. Several large material suppliers are developing and producing materials for the system. Currently, only PA12 is available but more, especially flexible, materials are in the pipeline. Pricing starts at around EUR 150k for the 3200 machine. But for the 4200 with all auxiliary-systems it will go over EUR 1 Mio.
ILT Aachen presented a low-cost SLM (Selective laser Melting) system.
The system was developed in a cooperation with the GoetheLab at FH Aachen.
The energy source is a 140 Watt laser diode with a spot diameter of 250 µm. The diode is mounted in a simple gantry system to move it over the work field. The build-envelope has a diameter of 80 mm and a z-axis of 90 mm. The overall dimensions with 1,3 m x 0,8 m x 1,4 m are also very compact. Using the laser diode saves expensive optical components such as a scanner system and a fiber-laser. Most of the components are standard profiles and some 3D printed connectors and chassis parts. Despite this very simplistic approach, the workpieces presented had a very high level of geometric detail and complexity. Densities measured reached up to 99,5 % in 1.4404 stainless steel. Outstanding facts, considering at a projected market price of EUR 30k. So the concept is aiming at SMEs not having the resources to invest six figures.
Written by Matthias Bringezu