Jul 21, 2017 | By David

Here’s another quick round-up of all the most recent happenings in 3D printing technology, because we know it’s getting harder and harder to keep up with everything. Just recently the 3D printing world saw Sigma Labs patenting a new 3D printing quality control system, Airwolf 3D launching a new membership program, and much more besides.

Sigma Labs patents Multi-Sensor Quality Inference and Control system for 3D printing processes

Sigma Labs, Inc is a major provider of quality assurance software and technology, under its PrintRite 3D brand. Today it announced the application of a patent for its Multi-Sensor Quality Inference and Control system, for Additive Manufacturing Processes. The system makes use of both acoustic and optical sensors.

Sigma Labs’ system is capable of discerning and addressing three key AM quality issues: i) process anomalies, or extreme unpredictable process events uncorrelated to process inputs; ii) process variations, or difference between desired process parameters and actual operating conditions; and iii) material structure and properties, or the quality of the resultant material created by the AM process. It further embodies the use of the gathered sensor data to evaluate and control additive manufacturing operations in real time.

Mark Cola, CEO of Sigma Labs stated, “We are at the forefront of a new era in additive manufacturing and are very pleased to announce the publication of this patent which evidences our leadership in real time process control capabilities. Crucial to our continued growth and emerging market leadership is securing our intellectual property portfolio. The publication of this patent application further serves these goals.”

Airwolf 3D launches new Premium Pass for savings on 3D printing products

Leading California-based 3D printer manufacturer Airwolf 3D has recently announces the launch of its new membership program. In an increasingly competitive market, the Airwolf 3D Premium Pass is designed to reward loyalty and encourage customers to use products and services other than its line of quality desktop 3D printers. Premium Pass offers members-only pricing on 3D printer filament, complimentary shipping on everything in Airwolf 3D's online store, and early access to new products, beta testing programs, and regular promotions.

"We don't cut corners," explained Airwolf 3D CEO and Co-Founder Erick Wolf. "We use only the highest-grade materials. And, yes, we're continually developing and employing proprietary techniques and formulas that yield the best results. However, our customers have given us a lot of feedback on our filament prices as well as a desire for free shipping, so this program is very much about getting our product out there and making high performance 3D printing less cost-prohibitive. We're glad we could finally deliver a solution through Premium Pass."

A buy-one-get-one-free offer is currently running for Airwolf’s quality FFF/FDM filament, which is one of its most aggressive promotions yet. A complimentary full-sized bottle of Wolfbite Bed Adhesion Solution is also included in the deal. Wolfbite Bed Adhesion Solution is Airwolf 3D's proprietary product that prevents warpage by bonding parts to the 3D printer bed and then releasing them easily once they're done printing. The Airwolf Premium Pass is now available throughout the U.S, excluding Alaska and Hawaii.

CP Glass makes use of 3D printing technology for bottle production support

CP Glass is one of Europe’s largest packaging manufacturing companies, providing high quality glass bottles for the spirits and beer industry. In order to further its impact on the packaging world, its Research and Development Department recently started to be supported by 3D printing technology. The company’s modelling process will be streamlined with the acquisition of a VSHAPER 270 Double 3D Printer.

"In order to meet the expectations of our customers we offer a wide range of solutions for customizing bottle designs, including shape, color, closure type, positioning, engraving and a number of other solutions to distinguish our customers' products on the market." says Krzysztof Staniek, the CEO of CP Glass S.A.

According to Pawel Skop from the CP Glass S.A. R&D Department, "3D Printing allows us to quickly model new bottle shapes while maintaining a high quality. Working with the VSHAPER team, we have were able to produce prints with distinctive transparency in white, green and brown. Printed models also undergo resin processing. The designs we have prepared this way are presented to our customers, and most importantly, the process of their preparation is much cheaper than the traditional modelling method."

Besides principal manufacturing and prototyping, the VSHAPER 270 Double can also be used for the production of unusual spare parts. This is especially useful when they are no longer available, the cost of purchasing is too high, or the lead time for parts used on the production line is too long.

New 3D printing Intelligent Manufacture Demonstration factory/ 3D printing Display and Experience Cloud factory for China XD Plastics

China XD Plastics Company is one of China's leading specialty chemical players, engaged in the development, manufacture, and sale of modified plastics primarily for automotive applications. The company recently announced an investment agreement between its subsidiary, Heilongjiang Xinda Enterprise Group Company Limited, and the Management Committee of Harbin Economic - Technological Development Zone. A new joint technological project will include the establishment of a 3D printing intelligent manufacture demonstration factory and a 3D printing display and experience cloud factory.

"The official signing of the investment agreements for the Project is another milestone for the Company," according to Jie Han, Chairman and CEO of China XD Plastics. "This Project will help the Company to expand its product mix into bio-based composites, 3D printing materials and functional masterbatch materials while maintaining our traditional petroleum-based materials. Paving the path to non-auto applications and further diversifying our company's business as a key element of our strategic plan.

In its 'Made in China 2025' and 'The Thirteenth Five-Year Plan', the Chinese Government highlighted additive manufacturing using composite materials as one of its key technology areas for future planning. The 3D printing factories part of China XD’s new venture should be finished by the end of July 2019.

Dremel unveils DigiLab product suite with new 3D45 printer

Dremel has unveiled a new model in its DigiLab line of fabrication tools targeted toward advanced education users. With a heated bed that allows multiple types of filament, such as EcoABS and Nylon, the 3D45 is designed for use in higher education and experienced high school classrooms to visualize and create complex projects. Simplicity and accessibility are central to the design of the 3D printer, with intuitive instructions and real-time analysis. The 3D45 is capable of automatically recognizing filament and adjusting printer settings, eliminating the need to re-slice files for each type of filament.

It offers:

  • Heated plate and removable build platform, with support for extended builds of up to 10" x 6" x 6.7";
  • Remote build management, including network support, a 720p camera for monitoring the build, monitoring of multiple 3D printers and a cloud-based slicing tool;
  • Support for WiFi and Ethernet (in addition to USB for offline printing);
  • Semi-automatic (guided) build plate leveling (two-point);
  • RFID for automatically changing settings based on filament type;
  • Full enclosure;
  • 4.5-inch color IPS touchscreen that lets you go from file to building effortlessly;
  • Advanced motion control

The 3D45 supports macOS and Windows operating systems and can work with .stl and .obj files. Educators can monitor and control multiple 3D printers from anywhere with the printer's integrated camera for enhanced fleet management. Developed with Bosch sensor technology and UL certification, educational institutions can rely on the 3D45 for safe use in learning environments.

"Our five 3D40 printers in the College of Engineering makerspace have about 800 hours of use per unit, totaling 4,000 hours of printing," said Eric Schmidt, Director of the College of Engineering Makerspace at the University of Illinois at Chicago. "Dremel printers can stand up to the constant flow of students making parts for their projects. We are excited about this next level of manufacturing with the 3D45."
The Dremel Digilab 3D45 is now available for preorder with an MSRP of $1,799 and is fully available in September 2017.

Whispering Gibbon rebrands its 3D printing technology as Perfected3D

UK-based model making company Whispering Gibbon will be rebranding its cutting-edge 3D printing service as Perfected3D. The company’s cloud 3D technology, which enables the full automation of manual model processing techniques, has been relaunched as a free beta for companies with access to a 3D printer to try out. It has been used to great success by games companies like Lockwood Publishing, which makes the Avakin Life app.

According to Joe Stevens, Founder and CEO of Whispering Gibbon, “Most 3D models are manually ‘hand-fixed’ to make them print-ready which is costly and time consuming. By fully automating the process our platform keeps costs down and vastly increase throughput. This makes 3D printing much more cost effective for bigger companies, accessible for smaller companies allowing them to create personalised content and easily scale up.”

The service is currently in the process of being integrated with other popular 3D printing services. “We invite all 3D printing users worldwide, from the largest printer manufacturers and 3D Printing service companies to the smallest micro business to sign up for the beta trial, prove the power for themselves, and let us know how big the impact is for them”, Stevens added.



Posted in 3D Printer Company



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