Proto Labs expands 3D Printing service with HP’s Multi Jet Fusion technology

Proto Labs (NYSE: PRLB), a global leader in technology-enabled, rapid manufacturing, has announced the addition of Multi Jet Fusion to its suite of 3D printing technologies. The production-grade 3D printing technology, developed by HP, builds fully functional plastic prototypes and production parts with accelerated speed, detailed precision, and consistent mechanical properties.

HP’s President of 3D Printing, Stephen Nigro, and Proto Labs President & CEO, Vicki Holt, visit a Multi Jet Fusion 3D printer at Proto Labs’ 77,000 square foot additive manufacturing facility in Cary, NC. The process has been integrated into Proto Labs’ suite of services—which now consists of 10 processes across 3D printing, CNC machining, and injection molding—to provide product developers and engineers with a total solution throughout the entire life cycle of a product. Image credit: Proto Labs

Due to Proto Labs’ industrial 3D printing expertise, HP selected the company as a foundational partner for its launch of Multi Jet Fusion technology. The collaboration is part of HP’s efforts to establish a global network of 3D printing service providers.

HP’s Multi Jet Fusion technology uses an inkjet array to apply fusing and detailing agents across a bed of nylon powder, which are then fused by heating elements into a solid layer. The technology’s unique approach to binding powder results in more isotropic material properties, faster build speeds, and, ultimately, lower costs compared to other powder-based 3D printing processes.

HP 3D part samples. Image credit: HP

Proto Labs has worked with select customers to optimize the Multi Jet Fusion process for its 3D printing offering. “Before introducing any manufacturing process at Proto Labs, we execute thorough testing to develop a repeatable process and ensure we can meet our quality standards,” said Greg Thompson, global product manager of 3D printing at Proto Labs. “We are extremely confident with the feature resolution and quality surface finishes we have seen with HP’s Multi Jet Fusion and are excited to offer our customers another tool to accelerate product development and reduce manufacturing costs.”

Proto Labs now offers five different industrial 3D printing processes, producing plastic, metal, and elastomeric components in as fast as one day.

Proto Labs
www.protolabs.com

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