SOFTWARE TECH NEWS

Stratasys Creates New possibilities for AM with its Software that eliminates CAD-to-STL Roadblock

additive manufacturing software

To empower designers and engineers to embrace new 3D printed possibilities, Stratasys,  announced the launch of GrabCAD Advanced FDM Software that eliminates the laborious CAD-to-STL process and advances the design-to-3D print process thereby boosting both time-to-market as well as time-to-revenue of products for companies.

By eliminating the tedious CAD-to-STL process, GrabCAD Print’s Advanced FDM feature is aimed at ensuring design intent via intuitive model interaction to rapidly deliver strong, light, and purpose-built parts.

additive manufacturing software
Above: GrabCAD Advanced FDM eliminates the CAD-to-STL conversion process – creating new possibilities for designers and engineers with 3D Printing/Image Credit: Stratasys

Speaking about how the new feature can help designers to reduce iterations and design cycles Mark Walker, Lead Software Product Manager at Stratasys said, “For design and manufacturing engineers, one of the most frustrating processes is ‘dumbing down’ a CAD file to STL format – only to require subsequent re-injection of design intent into the STL printing process.

This software is engineered to do away with this complexity, letting designers reduce iterations and design cycles – getting to a high-quality, realistic prototype and final part faster than ever before, added Mr. Walker.

The software contains rich CAD-native build controls that eliminate manual generation of complex toolpaths. This in turn helps in cutting down the overall programming times for 3D printing. Intuitive features achieve desired part characteristics through automatic control of FDM build attributes. Engineers easily select areas on native design geometry and specify design attributes – letting Advanced FDM automatically calculate 3D print toolpaths.

The software is already providing results for companies such as Eckhart and McLaren. For example, speaking about how the software is allowing the company to fine-tune parts builds,  Robert Heath, Additive Manufacturing Application Engineer at Eckhart said, “GrabCAD Print Advanced FDM’s geometry-based workflows have allowed us to fine-tune part builds – meeting application requirements and process parts more quickly than we could before. The seamless transition of moving a build between applications is easy and intuitive.”

“Advanced FDM has proved invaluable in improving our part processing time. When processing a very large number of tools and fixtures in a very time pressured environment, it was crucial to ensure stronger tool areas were correct first time, every time,” said Dave Hewitson, Rapid Prototyping Programmer at McLaren.

“Advanced FDM negates the requirement for multiple programs – creating a more streamlined process. It’s also allowed us to more effectively control the structure of end-use car parts, something that was previously very difficult with the solutions we had in hand. This means we can get better parts to the track faster,” adds Hewitson.

GrabCAD’s Advanced FDM is now available for download with GrabCAD Print (from versions 1.24) and is supported on Stratasys’ 3D printing systems such as the F370, Fortus 450mc, Fortus 400mc, Fortus 900mc, Fortus 380mc, Fortus 380mc Carbon Fiber Edition, and F900.


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