Nov 28, 2017 | By Julia

An ambitious startup based in Bangalore, India is making waves with its new Halo 5D printer, a device that its creator says is a serious step up from traditional 3D printing. Kaushik Mudda is the chief executive and founder of Ethereal Machines, the company behind this hybrid manufacturing machine capable of both additive and subtractive manufacturing. According to Mudda, the Halo 5D printer is poised to become the next big thing in the world of desktop manufacturing, and he wants everyone to know — even the most powerful family in American politics. As part of Mudda’s headline-grabbing business strategy, Ethereal Machines has created a bust of U.S. President Donald Trump with its new Halo 5D printer, and is already working on its next iteration: a bust of Ivanka Trump, which Mudda hopes to gift to the president’s daughter herself.

Putting all the Trump talk aside for a moment, you may be wondering what exactly 5D printing entails. Not to be confused with 4D printing — a type of 3D printing which produces objects that self-assemble after the printing process, effectively harnessing time as the “fourth dimension” — 5D printing refers to the 5 axes used by the machine itself. Known in most circles as 5-axis machining, the innovative technology already incorporates the three axes of 3D printing, in which a part moves in two directions (X and Y) while the tool moves along a third direction (Z). Yet in addition to these three axes, 5D printers can also rotate on two additional rotary axes (A and B), meaning that the printer bed and printhead are moving on unique angles, thus enabling a new kind of printing altogether.  

In conventional 3D printing, “plastic gets melted and deposited layer by layer," explains Mudda. "But they're just stacked, so if you put enough force on the Z-axis it's going to break. That's the biggest disadvantage of FDM printing,” and exactly where 5-axis printing reveals its importance, says the Benglauru founder. “Imagine something like a concave shaped cap — it's impossible to make with a regular 3D printer, because you'd need to build a lot of filler and supports. But with a 5-axis, since the bed itself is moving, it gives me the freedom to print however I want, [and make] that kind of structure.”

According to Mudda, the progression from 3D to 5D printing was a natural one. The Benglauru chief executive notes that all of Ethereal Machines’ earlier products were 3-axis machines, but after building up a sustainable business, Mudda’s team decided to “up the ante” with a desktop scale 5-axis CNC machine. “The existing ones were all really huge, and really costly, so we thought this was a good challenge,” he notes.

Of course, some things are easier said than done. Quickly realizing that his team of mechanical engineers wouldn’t be able to handle the task alone, Mudda jumped on the opportunity to bring in designers, electrical engineers, coders, and a whole range of other specialists. That’s when the spark really happened, the Ethereal Machines founder says. “We had the idea: let’s delve into additive manufacturing. So once we had the 5-axis CNC, from mechanical engineering to the proprietary code that's required to print with it, we just started toying with the idea of 'what will happen if I move an additive head onto this machine?' and from there we got to the Halo," Mudda recounts.

To be sure, Ethereal Machines didn’t invent 5D printing in and of itself — the innovation is in the fact that its Halo 5D printer is 40-60% cheaper than the machines currently available on the market, and considerably more compact. Mudda feels the device could set a new standard in desktop manufacturing, and have diverse applications in wearable electronics, aerospace, aviation, and automobile manufacturing.

It’s a proud confidence that’s showing itself in the company’s recent PR stunt: printing a bust of US President Donald Trump. Next up will be a bust of Ivanka Trump, as a teaser for the company’s upcoming 5D printer model, which Mudda says will be released in a couple of months.

In the meantime, you can find out more about the Halo 5D Printer at CES 2018 in Las Vegas, where Ethereal Machines will be showcasing the much talked about desktop device. The Ethereal Halo was just named amongst the Best of Innovations: 3D Printing ahead of CES 2018.



Posted in 3D Printer



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hibrid wrote at 11/29/2017 8:22:48 AM:

where is the link for the company?

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