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3D printing | Additive Manufacturing | Top 3D Printer Manufacturers

A trending technology which is a bias in every industry is the 3D printing which is now acquiring a revolutionary change in the present market. It is expected that the metal products can be easily manufactured using the Direct-metal printing in the near future. A 3D printer, which is operated by computer control using commands, can convert a solid raw material into a given 3-dimensional object. 3D printing is also known as additive manufacturing.

Additive manufacturing includes the addition of the materials (plastic, metal, concrete or one day a human tissue) layer upon a layer to build the 3-dimensional object. The process of a 3D printing is shown below:

• A modeling(Computer Aided Design or CAD) software draws a 3-dimensional object design.
• Once, the data read by the computer, the printing process begins.
• The solid, liquid, powder or sheet material form layer upon layer and print the 3d object.

The end products are applied in various industries such as aircraft, dental restoration, medical implantation, the automobile industry, and fashion studio.

THESE ARE SOME 3D PRINTING MATERIALS

•    ABS (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene)
•    Acetal (POM-Polyoxymethylene)
•    ASA (Acrylonitrile Styrene Acrylate)
•    HIPS (High Impact Polystyrene)
•    Nylon
•    PEEK (Polyetheretherketone)
•    PETG (Polyethylene Terephthalate)
•    PLA (Polylactic Acid)
•    Polycarbonate (PC)
•    Polypropylene (PP)
•    PVA (Polyvinyl Alcohol)
•    Resin (3D Printing Liquid)
•    TPU / TPE(Thermoplastic Polyurethane)
•    ULTEM

PRINTING TECHNOLOGIES

FDM - Fused Deposition Modeling
•    Applications: Electrical housings; Form and fit testing's; Jigs and fixtures; Investment casting patterns
•    Benefits: Best surface finish; Full color and multi-material available

SLA - Stereolithography
•    Applications: Injection mold-like polymer prototypes; Jewelry casting; Dental applications; Hearing aids
•    Benefits: Smooth surface finish; Fine feature details

DLP - Digital Light Processing
•    Applications: Jewelry casting; Dental applications; Injection mold-like polymer prototypes; Hearing aids
•    Benefits: Fine feature details ; Best surface finish; Mostly similar to SLA

SLS - Selective Laser Sintering
•    Applications: Functional parts; Complex ducting (hollow designs); Low run part production
•    Benefits: Functional parts, good mechanical properties; Complex geometries

DMLS or SLM - Direct Metal Laser Sintering
•    Applications: Functional metal parts (aerospace and automotive); Medical; Dental
•    Benefits: Strongest, functional parts; Complex geometries

EBM - Electron Beam Melting
•    Different from other Powder Bed Fusion techniques, Electron Beam Melting (EBM) uses a high power beam, or electrons, to produce fusion between the particles of metal powder.
•    A focused electron beam scans across a thin layer of powder, causing limited melting and solidification over a particular cross-sectional area, are built up to form a solid object.
•    Also important to note is that EBM parts are fabricated in a vacuity, and the process can only be applied with conductive materials.

DOD - Drop on Demand
•    Drop on Demand (DOD) is a type of 3D printing technology that uses a pair of inkjets. One deposits the build materials, which is typically a wax-like material. The second is used for dissolvable support material. As with typical types of 3D printing technology, DOD printers serve a planned path to jet material in a deposition, creating the cross-sectional area of an object layer-by-layer.

Material Jetting
•    Material jetting works in a similar way to a regular inkjet printer. The key variation is that, instead of printing a single layer of ink, multiple layers are built upon each other to form a solid part.
•    Objects made with Material Jetting require support, which is printed together during the build from a dissolvable material that’s removed during the post-processing stage. Material Jetting is one of the only types of 3D printing technology to offer objects produced from multi-material printing and full-colour.

Binder Jetting
•    Applications: Functional metal parts; Full color models; Sand casting
•    Benefits: Low-cost; Large build volumes; Functional metal parts

LIST OF 3D PRINTING SOFWARES

•    CURA
•    MatterControl 2.0
•    3DPrinterOS
•    KISSlicer
•    SLIC3R
•    SLICECRAFT
•    ICESL
•    OCTOPRINT
•    REPETIER-HOST
•    MAKEPRINTABLE
•    MESHMIXER
•    MESHLAB
•    NETFABB
•    TINKERCAD
•    3D SLASH
•    SCULPRITS
•    VECTARY
•    FIGURO
•    FUSION360
•    BLENDER
•    ONSHAPE

APPLICATIONS OF ADDITIVE MANUFACTURING

3D printing is used as a mould to print the pipette to fill it with live tissues known as bio-ink to develop organs in vitro. In recent times many organs are developed and transplanted successfully by using 3d printing. In terms of cost it is a cheaper alternative for the organ transplantation. This development is also a best resource for the researchers to rely on. Many Medical institutions are experimenting on Liver, Brain and Skin's drug discovery and disease modeling.

Many doctors use patient's organ replicas in 3d printing for the practice purpose before going to operate a critical operation to reduce the percentage of risk.

3D Metal printing, powder-bed welding, deposition process such as laser deposition welding, selective laser melting or direct metal laser sintering  are the types of metal printing. In powder-bed welding the printer-slider form a thin layer with a metallic material. The laser beam cut the layer according to the necessary design than the metal powder is added to the thin layer to form the metal object. Metal printing helps a lot in automation and automotive industry a typical handmade tools, objects, pistons many parts can be produced simply.

Metal 3D Printing Powder

The present speed of the printers are very slow many companies are working on increasing the speed of the production.

3D PRINTING COMPANIES

3D Matters: Established in 2012, 3D Matters is an ISO 9001-certified additive manufacturer that provides end-to-end 3D printing/additive manufacturing solutions across Southeast Asia. The company helps clients with scale-accurate models and fast prototyping and enhances their design and manufacturing capabilities to shorten lead times for spares and obsolete parts, as well as speeding up time to market for new products.

3D MetalForge: Established in 2016, 3D Metalforge has been providing end-to-end additive manufacturing across various industry sectors such as aerospace, maritime/offshore, infocomm and digital, precision engineering and manufacturing. The company received ISO 9001: 2015 certification for achieving consistent and high-quality standards in 3D printing for its world-class customers. Specialized in metal additive manufacturing, the company has one of the most advanced ranges of printing equipment including selective laser melting and a new one of a kind LAAM printer that can produce high-quality metal parts up to 1.5 meters in size, and at a speed up to 750g/hour.

3D Printing Studios: Established since 2014, 3D Printing Studios Asia has grown to be the regional leading pioneer providing 3D Printing, 3D Scanning, and 3D CAD Designing and Modelling services. 3D Printing Studios Asia HQ is currently based in Singapore and is centrally providing 3D Printing services and sales of 3D Printers through authorized partners in the region.

Using our wide range of latest 3D Technologies, we have successfully completed many complex 3D Printing assignments. Whether you are a novice or an expert in CAD Designer, our highly qualified 3D Industrial Designers, Product Designers and Engineers are able to assist you in all your project requirements.

3Dealise: 3Dealise is a 3D engineering, 3D printing and rapid manufacturing service provider for industrial applications, in sectors such as automotive, aerospace, pump and machinery manufacturing. Our capabilities include 3D scanning, 3D engineering, reverse engineering, casting mould design, 3D printing, and managed production and casting.