Formlabs, led by co-founder and CEO Max Lobovsky, remains steadfast in its commitment to democratize 3D printing by providing user-friendly, cost-effective solutions that unlock boundless creative possibilities. This unwavering dedication has led to groundbreaking innovations in 3D printing materials and technology. In a bid to revolutionize additive manufacturing, Formlabs introduces Silicone 40A and Alumina 4N Resins, two remarkable materials that bridge the gap between 3D printing flexibility and the high-performance attributes of silicone and ceramics.
These materials not only simplify design processes but also expand the horizons of manufacturing, healthcare, and various other industries. Moreover, Formlabs introduces an Open Platform, fostering collaboration and customization through certified materials and advanced print settings, while also embracing an open material license.
Silicone 40A: Melding 3D Printing Flexibility with Silicone Performance
Formlabs introduces Silicone 40A Resin, a groundbreaking material that marries the unique qualities of cast silicone with the adaptability of 3D printing, eliminating the labor-intensive molding and casting processes. Leveraging Formlabs’ proprietary Pure Silicone Technology, Silicone 40A enables users to 3D print intricate silicone components in-house, with production times measured in hours, not weeks.
This Silicone 40A and Alumina 4N resins excels in producing functional prototypes and end-use parts, offering soft, pliable, and durable components capable of withstanding compression, flexing, and stretching. What’s more, Silicone 40A boasts impressive thermal and chemical resistance, making it well-suited for demanding industrial and automotive applications. It also finds relevance in consumer products, including wearables and medical devices.
Guy Cardwell, Director of Research and Development at HGM Automotive Electronics, commends Silicone 40A for its capacity to simplify design processes, previously hindered by costly and time-consuming molding methods. He emphasizes the unique ability of Formlabs’ SLA printer using Silicone 40A Resin to create soft connector seals that rival the quality and durability of traditionally molded silicone or TPU parts.
Alumina 4N Resin: Elevating Ceramic Engineering
Formlabs introduces Alumina 4N Resin, a technical ceramic boasting remarkable properties, including 98.6% relative density and 99.9% purity. This material thrives in extreme conditions, delivering thermal and abrasion resistance, mechanical strength, and chemical inertness. It’s engineered to meet the demanding requirements of industries such as manufacturing, defence, foundry, chemical, automotive, and semiconductor.
Notably, Alumina 4N eliminates the need for expensive tooling, reduces production costs, and accelerates development cycles. It democratizes ceramic engineering, making it more affordable, flexible, and performance-driven through additive manufacturing. Formlabs asserts that its Form 3+ 3D printers, when paired with Alumina 4N Resin, offer the market’s most accessible and user-friendly SLA ceramic 3D printing solution.
Benjamin Lam, Materials Research Engineer at the Air Force Research Laboratory, applauds Alumina 4N Resin for its ease of use and seamless integration into their workflow. He highlights its low entry barrier, allowing rapid design iteration and cost-effective part production.
Formlabs’ New Open Platform
Formlabs introduces its Open Platform, a game-changer enhancing the capabilities of SLA 3D printers. This platform incorporates three key features:
- Certified Materials: Users gain access to a carefully curated selection of top-tier third-party resins. The initial offerings, provided by Kulzer GmbH, cater to dental biocompatible applications in the APAC region.
- Print Settings Editor: Advanced users can fine-tune 3D print settings within PreForm, tailoring performance to their specific needs.
- Open Material License: An optional, paid software license empowers expert users to 3D print with any 405 nm photopolymer resin, providing unparalleled flexibility.
Expanding SLS 3D Printing with the Fuse Starter Package
Formlabs introduces the Starter Package, a comprehensive solution designed to elevate professional-grade part production using high-performance materials. Priced at $24,999 and intended for use with Formlabs’ Fuse 1+ 30W 3D printer, this offering includes the innovative Fuse Depowdering Kit—a versatile de-powdering system compatible with a wide range of materials.
The Starter Package unlocks access to a complete professional SLS ecosystem for low-volume production at an affordable price point. Users can seamlessly integrate the Fuse Depowdering Kit into their additive manufacturing workflow, enabling effortless material changes without the need for extensive post-processing machinery cleaning. Formlabs’ commitment to advancing 3D printing technology, materials, and accessibility continues to reshape industries and empower creators worldwide.
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