3D Printing Ready For Mass Production

Selective Absorption Fusion technology zeroes in on the growing market for 3D printing high volumes of production grade parts. The H350 Series Production Platform by Stratasys uses Selective Absorption Fusion (SAF) technology specifically designed to meet the needs of volume manufacturing.

“We will enable a shift of many applications from traditional manufacturing and also enable the creation of products that can only be produced additively,” says Omer Krieger, Stratasys’ executive vice president of product strategy and corporate development. “SAF technology represents a significant innovation that opens up new opportunities to address applications in industries such as automotive, consumer goods and electronics, and industrial equipment.”

SAF-based 3D printers can deliver a competitive cost per part at production level throughput compared to traditional manufacturing processes, with the part quality, consistency and reliability needed for high yield production environments.

The SAF technology uses a counter-rotating roller to coat powder layers onto a print bed and prints absorber fluid to image the part layers. The imaged layers are fused by passing an IR lamp over the entire span of the print bed. SAF technology executes these key process steps in the same direction across the print bed to provide a uniform thermal experience – and therefore part consistency – for all printed parts regardless of their placement in the build.

SAF technology’s innovative Big Wave powder management system ensures the necessary powder is always distributed across the whole print bed, maintaining a large, thermally stable wave of powder. Any overflow powder is quickly recirculated, minimizing powder thermal exposure and reducing powder aging. The result is less fresh powder required and lower operational costs.

SAF technology is used to selectively jet high energy-absorption HAF fluid onto areas of a layer of powder-form material in just one full-width pass. Industrial piezoelectric print heads jet single or multiple drops of the fluid to produce either fine detail or large areas, without compromising throughput.