Additive manufacturing news has flooded my inbox during the past couple of weeks. Stratasys released a new software platform. Markforged has a new printer capable of printing a new fiber. Essentium introduces a new dual extruder. News releases follow:

1. Stratasys Ltd. introduced the GrabCAD Additive Manufacturing Platform, an open and enterprise-ready software platform that enables manufacturers to manage production-scale additive manufacturing operations.

3D printing at production scale also requires new software-driven operational capabilities, such as the ability to manage a large number of 3D printers across multiple locations, monitor output quality, automate materials management, and integrate within the broader enterprise. Traditional manufacturing solutions are not designed for additive workflows, which are digitally native, highly elastic and location independent.

The new platform provides Stratasys with the opportunity to strengthen its leadership position in the additive manufacturing industry through this growing addressable market.

The GrabCAD Additive Manufacturing Platform integrates applications and third-party Software Partners via the Software Development Kit (SDK). It enables two-way connectivity between 3D printers, additive manufacturing and enterprise applications, and broader Industry 4.0 infrastructure. GrabCAD applications in the platform include:

GrabCAD Print: Simplifies the workflow between Design for Additive Manufacturing (DfAM) and 3D print preparation.

GrabCAD Shop: Cloud-based software-as-a-service (SaaS) work order management application that simplifies the 3D printing workflow.

GrabCAD Print Manager: A new application that enables manufacturers to manage fleets of industrial 3D printers.

• GrabCAD Software Development Kit (SDK): Industry 4.0-ready SDKs provide API’s, documentation, code samples and support integration with enterprise IT as well as third-party applications for account management, asset management, planning and order management, security, quality management, and analytics.

2. Markforged, creator of the integrated metal and carbon fiber additive manufacturing platform, The Digital Forge, announces the FX20 printer. This new production-ready hardware prints the flame-retardant, high-performance thermoplastic material with ULTEM 9085 filament in combination with Markforged’s propriety Continuous Fiber Reinforcement printing technology for high-strength, heat resistant and higher performance parts that can meet the needs of the most demanding industries such as aerospace, defense, automotive and oil & gas.

Built to scale distributed global production, the FX20 is precision-designed and sensor-driven to deliver breakthrough accuracy, quality and reliability to fabricate parts directly at the point-of-need with the simple click of a button. As the biggest, fastest and smartest 3D printer Markforged has ever produced, the FX20 pairs size and throughput to make larger parts at incredible speeds. This new technology, alongside high-temperature printing capabilities, elevates the Digital Forge platform from accessible industrial-strength composite manufacturing to robust production applications. The FX20 has a heated build chamber capable of maintaining up to a 200°C temperature and the capacity to print parts up to 525 mm x 400 mm x 400 mm in size. The FX20 is up to eight times faster than the default print settings on Markforged’s existing line of composite printers and prints nearly five times larger builds than its next largest printer, the X7.

Bringing together ULTEMTM 9085 filament with Markforged’s proprietary Continuous Fiber Reinforcement technology will help manufacturers move from augmenting manufacturing operations with composite 3D printing to replacing entire segments of the supply chain by bringing strong, accurate parts that solve demanding, end-use applications right where needed.

3. Essentium Inc. announced it will debut its newest 3D printing platform, the Essentium High Speed Extrusion (HSE) 240 HT Dual Extruder 3D Printer, at Formnext this November featuring a new industrial design including a single dual extrusion print head.

At 1168mm wide x 795 mm deep x 1687 mm high, the HSE 240 3D Printer is small enough to fit in small and medium-sized factory spaces and university labs. It features automatic filament switching to reduce downtime, creating more parts in a compact environment. The HSE 240 3D Printer has three print modes that can create highly accurate parts from different materials in a single print without sacrificing quality and performance. 

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