The products & people, sights & sounds from the 3D Systems stand
RAPID+TCT 2018 may be history but the images, impressions and announcements from this seminal event linger on.
3D Systems premiered the company’s new ‘Our People Know’ theme in its impressive booth with exciting graphics and messaging that were a stand out on the busy show floor. Dominating the booth was the groundbreaking Figure 4 Production system for volume plastic part production using digital molding methodology as an alternative to plastic injection molding. This was the first time that attendees had the opportunity to experience Figure 4 Production and Figure 4 Standalone in-person. Thirty new materials for Figure 4 Production were announced at the show including:
- Figure 4™ RGD-BLK 10: a durable material for rigid, load bearing applications, as well as production parts for automotive and durable goods applications.
- Figure 4 RGD-GRY10: a high speed material for rapid design iterations providing up to 100 mm/hour build speed.
- Figure 4 RGD-GRY 15: a strong, rigid material for production applications.
Another major announcement from this year’s event highlight was the general availability of the ProX® SLS 6100. Customers that need to produce larger parts with superior durability and finishing have found that this SLS printer delivers exactly what they need. When combined with new nylon materials, software and cloud-based services the ProX SLS 6100 addresses the majority of the plastic prototyping and production needs of the automotive, durable goods, and healthcare industries as well as delivering solutions for aerospace interior cabin parts.
One of the biggest little stars at RAPID+TCT was FabPro™ 1000 which was displayed with three new materials: FabPro Tough BLK is a durable plastic material for producing black parts for functional prototyping and production parts, FabPro Proto GRY is a fast, general purpose plastic material ideally suited for industrial applications and FabPro JewelCast GRN - a green material ideal for small, fine featured jewelry master patterns and for gypsum investment casting applications. FabPro 1000 is an ideal entry-level industrial 3D printing solution for low-volume small part prototyping and production with expected availability set for late May 2018.
And for sheer awesomeness, you can’t beat the giant Stator Ring! This 95-inch diameter QuickCast pattern was produced for investment casting using an SLA build style that generates a honeycomb pattern that's 85% air and weighs…only 32 lbs. Our CEO Vyomesh Joshi (VJ) stood in the middle for a memorable photo op, recreating DaVinci’s Vitruvian Man illustration.
Putting the Pedal to the Metal...
Of course it wasn’t only about plastics. 3D Systems’ dominance in metal 3D printing was firmly on display with a selection of high quality parts in different metal alloy materials. Based on its extensive expertise gained from producing more than 500,000 metal parts annually in its global Customer Innovation Centers, the company introduced DMP Monitoring. DMP Monitoring provides technicians real-time data collection and analysis to optimize build parameters and produce higher quality parts. Over time, this enables reduced waste, improved productivity, and lower total cost of operation. DMP Monitoring is currently available for 3D Systems’ ProX DMP 320 printers. It will be included with the company’s ProX DMP 8500 factory solution when it becomes generally available later in 2018.
...And Putting the Rapid in RAPID
A small drama was avoided during the show when two part stands were broken by enthusiastic booth visitors. Luckily Figure 4 was just a few feet away. In a matter of a few hours, the part stands were 3D printed in durable plastic and back performing beautifully.
One of the most important advantages that sets 3D Systems apart from other additive manufacturing companies is its selection of engineering and manufacturing software - helping manufacturers redefine their workflows and move from prototyping to production. 3DXpert is a software solution that takes your CAD data and helps you make it optimized for additive manufacturing. This was a major draw at RAPID+TCT, with demonstrations showing how it’s used to enable error-free, streamlined design for metal additive manufacturing, including lightweight support structures such as lattices.
Visitors also got to see practical demonstrations of the recently announced integration between leading 3D scanner manufacturer Artec and 3D Systems’ Geomagic Freeform® clay sculpting software. Artec scanners can now be ordered with Geomagic Freeform software, which features a rich set of organic 3D engineering hybrid modeling tools. Designers can scan models and textures directly into Freeform® to complete their design, streamlining the workflow and facilitating the design of orthotic and prosthetic devices as well as innovative consumer products, original artwork and jewelry with fine, intricate details.
To sum it all up, RAPID-TCT shone a spotlight on 3D Systems’ newest 3D printers, materials, and software – demonstrating that our people know how to take you from prototyping to production.