Apr 7, 2017 | By Tess

Sodick, an American manufacturer of metal 3D printing systems, has announced its latest high-performance additive manufacturing technology: Parallel Mode. The new method, which upgrades Sodick’s existing OPM250L metal 3D printing tech, could help to radically increase print speeds.

Sodick's Parallel Mode can sinter three spots simultaneously

Readers might remember Sodick for its hybrid metal 3D printing technology, which combines laser sintering and milling processes to print and post-process simultaneously. The company’s first product, the OPM250L, which was first introduced last year at the International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS) in Chicago, has been touted by the company as being the ideal machine for mold making. Still, like most other AM systems, it is limited in terms of its print speed.

Now, however, with the Parallel Mode upgrade, Sodick claims its metal 3D printing technology can be boosted in terms of speed. The new method consists of printing multiple (up to three) sections of a print simultaneously by “controlling a single laser source at high speed.” This is achieved through optimizing the 3D printer’s laser unit usage, which up until now had been limited in order to account for laser sintering fumes and shape deviation.

Sodick’s new OPM350L 3D printer, which introduces Parallel Mode, also features an upgraded fume collector, which is equipped to run for longer periods of time, thus ensuring proper ventilation for the printer’s faster printing speeds and increased productivity. According to the company, its fume collector cycle time is three times that of competing systems.

Sodick's OPM350L 3D printing system

Not only can Parallel Mode be used to build up a large part in less time, but it can also be used to 3D print multiple copies of the same part (providing that it is small enough to fit). Another feature that sets Parallel Mode apart from other multi laser beam systems is that it does not require the user to use separate build envelopes. Basically, this means that the OPM350L 3D printer is not restricted to using one beam per quadrant, but can use multiple beams in a single quadrant if need be.

Sodick’s newest 3D printer from its OPM series, the OPM350L has a build volume of 350 x 350 x 350 mm, a maximum load weight of 300 kg, and a 500 W laser beam system. The new Parallel Mode feature is applicable for a range of different applications and is expected to increase production rates significantly.

In other Sodick news, the company appointed Evan Syverson to be its new Additive Business Development Manager. In the position, he will be seeking out new opportunities for Sodick’s 3D printing business, as well as ensuring that its customers, partners, and workers have the resources they need.

 

 

Posted in 3D Printing Technology

 

 

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