Mar 2, 2017 | By Tess
Luxexcel, a Dutch company specializing in 3D printed optics, has achieved a breakthrough with its additive manufacturing technology. According to the company, its 3D printed ophthalmic quality lenses were found to be in accordance with the ISO 8980-1:2004 Focal Power standard. Luxexcel will reportedly begin shipping its 3D printing platform to ophthalmic labs later this year.
Founded in 2009, Luxexcel has become known for its high-quality 3D printed optics and lenses. In fact, it is one of, if not the only company in the world that is capable of additively manufacturing ophthalmic quality lenses, which include monofocals, bifocals, trifocals, and more. Impressively, its 3D printing technique has become so refined that lenses straight off the printer are said to be at an “industry-required ISO quality” level.
Now, after independent testing by Florida-based Colts Laboratories, who were given a varied sample of Luxelcel’s machine-produced lenses, the company’s 3D printed lenses have been found to comply with the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) standard. As an analyst stated: “The 3D printed lenses – Luxexcel +1.00 and -3.25 – comply with ISO 8980-1:2004 Focal Power.”
Hans Streng, Chief Executive Officer of Luxexcel, said of the achievement: “Luxexcel has developed an industrial 3D printing platform to 3D print specialty lenses like monofocals, bifocals, trifocals, with cylinders and prisms. The lenses are thoroughly tested and on ISO quality level. This opens up business opportunities for ophthalmic labs to manufacture a wide range of specialty lenses with our technology.”
Luxelcel’s innovative optics manufacturing process includes everything from design software, to consumables, to 3D printing hardware. The patented process itself, called Printoptical Technology, uses a wide-format industrial inkjet printing system that, rather than print layer-by-layer, uses tiny droplets that are cured by UV light. By using droplets, Luxexcel has found the key to making fully transparent, high-quality lenses that do not require any post-processing treatments.
Notably, its 3D printing system has been specially designed to fit into a standard ophthalmic lab workflow, giving the labs the means to manufacture “revolutionary lens designs in a mainstream process.” The company’s 3D printed lenses are also fit for traditional processes such as edging and framing, and are compatible with industry coatings. As mentioned, Luxelcel will begin shipping its 3D printing technology to ophthalmic labs this year.
In 2015, Luxexcel made headlines for a number of reasons, including raising €7.5 million in investments to advance its 3D printed optical lenses (which has apparently paid off!). The company also partnered with 3D printing service and design marketplace Trinckle to launch Lens Creator, a platform for making custom 3D printed optics, and partnered with software vendor OPTIS.
Posted in 3D Printing Application
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