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Sunday, Mar 16, 2008 5:00 AM

BURLINGTON, MASS., USA - Z Corporation today announced new software that prepares 3D data files for easy full-color 3D printing, automatically and with unprecedented ease.

ZEdit™ Pro lets users of 3D mechanical CAD software verify and ensure that geometric data is 3D printable; apply colors, texture maps and labels to their models; and easily print very large prototypes in component pieces. It also transforms files that were never originally intended for 3D printing, including those produced by 3D digital content creation software used in animation and architecture. ZEdit Pro makes these files 3D printing-ready, often with a single click.

With these capabilities, Z Edit Pro enables product designers to create better models faster, and enables a new class of creative professionals - including architects, conceptual designers, and game designers - to reap the same benefits of easy 3D printing as mechanical engineers.

"ZEdit Pro is simple to use, and the intuitive four-button interface requires no training," said Nick Gaetanos, Product Engineer, Moog, Inc. "The software will prove valuable for any user and, given its simplicity, is absolutely within the reach of the casual, once-a-month user. Whether you're adding geometry, color or labels, or printing a huge model, what you see on the screen is what you get out of the 3D printer."

Optimized for Z Corporation 3D printers, ZEdit Pro's industry-first capabilities focus on three functional areas that improve the quality of 3D printed models and enable more full-color 3D content to be printed directly:

  • Geometry Optimization to automatically make 3D data ready for 3D printing;
  • Painting & Texture Mapping for coloring and applying images to models; and
  • Print Preparation for cutting or hollowing parts before printing.

Meeting industry needs

Although mechanical 3D CAD software typically produces 3D printing-ready data, digital content creation tools used for visualization and rendering in architecture, animation and avatar creation often do not. ZEdit Pro automatically "3D Print enables" data from either kind of 3D software, as well as medical scans, by incorporating printable geometric data, closing gaps, repairing meshes, and adding depth that is only suggested by shading in some software. ZEdit Pro's capabilities are especially useful for service bureaus that receive myriad file types in varying levels of refinement.

 

For mechanical engineers, ZEdit Pro provides an easy way to add graphical elements - including color, texture, annotations and engineering labels - to designs for 3D printing. Users can optionally leverage applications like Adobe® Photoshop® or Adobe Illustrator® to create the graphical elements they apply within the ZEdit Pro interface.

ZEdit Pro also gives anyone the easy ability to print CAD models that are too big for the printing envelope. The software automatically segments oversized models, creating pins and holes for reassembly of the sections after printing. ZEdit Pro also hollows out solids that would otherwise waste resources, and helps users create bases and pedestals for models.

"A lot of people work in 3D but are slowed or even prevented from creating 3D physical models of their work for design reviews, marketing, sales, entertainment, collecting, clinical diagnosis or
visualization," said John M. Kawola, Z Corporation CEO. "ZEdit Pro now enables these individuals to fully engage in 3D printing without having to toil over files or invest in costly, sophisticated file-fixing software. ZEdit Pro is focused on making any 3D data printable and powerful, with the fewest mouse clicks and the ease of a document printer."

ZEdit Pro is priced at $2,500 USD, and is available immediately through Z Corp.'s worldwide reseller network. For a limited time, ZEdit Pro will be included with purchases of Z Corporation 3D printers at no cost. Promotional pricing is available for upgrades, multi-seat licenses and educational institutions.