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Stratasys Seeking to Provide New Disruptive Technology for 3D Printing
April 4, 2016
3D printing giant Stratasys is at it again. Today the company announced a one-of-a-kind 3D printer that is capable of producing multi-material prototypes and parts as part of a single 3D print. The J750 provides users the ability to print with a variety of materials producing finished products unlike any others to date. Aimed at product designers, engineers, manufacturers, and service bureaus, it has blown open the doors to a new era of 3D printing technology.
According to Brycen Smith, engineering technician supervisor for OtterBox, "We’ve used 3D printers for years but nothing has come close to revolutionizing our design and ideation process the way the Stratasys J750 has. Stratasys allows us to innovate in ways we never thought possible and gives us the ability to create true product-matching prototypes and to cut down the time necessary to bring products to market. The Stratasys J750 is a game-changer for both OtterBox and the 3D printing industry."
The new Stratasys J750 along with the Objet Connex multi-color, multi-material series provides the opportunity for customers to use an unprecedented array exceeding 360,000 various shades of color as well as materials ranging from rigid to flexible and opaque to transparent. This flexibility significantly hastens the production of representative models and prototypes for consideration. Further, they also provide the ability for customers to easily produce tooling, molds, jigs, and fixtures among other things.
Stratasys notes that the J750 makes practically instantaneous decision-making with regards to products and designs possible because of the manner in which output is produced. It is expected to greatly improve TCO (Total Cost of Ownership) for customers by removing several of the traditional complex processes, time, and resources that up to now have been required to produce product-matching prototypes. Designers and engineers are able to see firsthand within a matter of hours how a concept or prototype will work with both internal stakeholders and end users. Gaining insight from these groups provides immediate feedback that will inform decisions about the potential success of a particular design.
Michael Shanler, Research Director and Pete Basiliere, Research VP for Imaging and Print Services, Gartner, states "Today’s supply chain is considering transformational opportunities that can be realized through 3D printing capabilities. It is enabling new business opportunities to more quickly design and test products that are under development, as well as to actually manufacture commercial and industrial goods. (3D printing technologies) are also enabling the 'new possible' by producing new designs that could not be made with traditional manufacturing technologies, while negating assembly, improving performance and elevating part quality."
The J750 is further supported with a new version of PolyJet Studio™ software which includes a brand new interface which makes it easier than ever before to allow users to choose materials, optimize the build, and manage print queues. Assigning colors, transparencies, and rigidity remains much the same as in earlier versions. Lastly, color textures can be loaded fully intact via VRML files that can be imported directly from CAD tools.
Among other advantages of the new J750 is the quick and efficient manner it handles material changeovers. It has a large, six-material capacity and preserves the most used resigns loaded and ready for printing. The new state-of-the-art print heads enables materials such as Digital ABS™ are now able to be printed up to 50% faster than previously released Stratasys PolyJet systems. With the ability of the printer to output full color, fully textured models consisting of multiple materials, it is no longer necessary for users to paint or assemble their designs.
Josh Claman, Chief Business Officer, Stratasys, said "With the introduction of the J750, we are harnessing more than 25 years of experience to set a new historical milestone in 3D printing—reaffirming our commitment to keeping customers always on the cutting edge of innovation. With its one-stop realism, the J750 is quite simply a game changer. By combining full color with multiple materials and a streamlined workflow, it recalibrates the impact of 3D printing in the product development cycle. Informed design decisions can be made immediately after the concepting stage. The time saved by eliminating the painting and assembly process can lead to faster product delivery times. The J750 is a multi-purpose system that can also produce production tools, manufacturing moulds, teaching aids, and other models—truly raising the bar in 3D printing versatility."
Stratasys believes among the various types of organizations that would benefit from this new printer include consumer product companies, service bureaus, design firms, educational settings including universities and research institutions, medical device companies, hospitals, medical schools, and special effects and animation companies. The J750 is available for purchase immediately though delivery times may vary according to location. The J750 will be on display at the Additive Manufacturing Users Group (AMUG) 2016 conference all this week in St. Louis, MO.