Several of the new and noteworthy 3D printers in this slideshow are breaking some boundaries. Three of them include the number "1,000" in the product name, indicating that the longest dimension is 1,000 mm. That doesn't sound like much, but it's nearly 40 inches, which used to be considered downright humongous in a commercial or industrial 3D printer.
Some of the others have broken other kinds of boundaries, such as using multiple heads, new metals printing techniques, printing new materials, or working with high-profile development partners to ensure very high-quality parts and controls. A couple of the machines are desktops, one is an enormous industrial end-production machine, and most are commercial or industrial printers that fall in-between in machine size and build volumes.
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Click on the image below to start the slideshow:
Some of us have been waiting for this -- the big build volume production version of Stratasys' Objet multi-materials 3D printer. Unveiled in April at Hannover Messe 2015, the industrial scale Objet1000 Plus 3D Production System adds extra-large print size and accelerated speeds for industrial printing of end-production parts. The build volume is 1000 mm x 800 mm x 500 mm (39.3 inch x 31.4 inch x 19.6 inch), roughly equivalent to Stratasys' own Fortus 900mc production system and a bit smaller than the new 1000K from +Mfg (see next slide). Built for making low volumes of small parts, industrial full-scale prototypes, or large production tooling, the new machine is designed to work unattended and has hot-swappable material replacement cartridges.
Ann R. Thryft is senior technical editor, materials & assembly, for Design News. She's been writing about manufacturing- and electronics-related technologies for 25 years, covering manufacturing materials & processes, alternative energy, machine vision, and all kinds of communications.
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