This year, nearly all the major vendors introduced additive machines capable of building parts in production quantities. Here are 11 of the major introductions.
1. Building bigger parts
Stratasys Ltd. launched its Infinite-Build 3D Demonstrator, which uses Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM) to produce very long parts by turning the Z axis on its side. The build plate is oriented as if it were a vertical wall and the extrusion nozzle deposits material on that “wall” layer by layer. Thus, the part can “grow” out of the machine, coming at you on its side, to whatever length is needed, an almost infinite Z. The bottom floor of the machine’s build area is 7 ft, so parts longer than 8 to 10 ft may need additional support. Build speed is 10 times faster than current extrusion processes.