Accumold acquires Fabrica 2.0 3D micro-printer ”3dpbm

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Accumold, a leading micro-molding company, has taken delivery of a Fabrica 2.0 3D micro-printer from Fabrica Group. The technology was previously known as Tera 250 and was created by Nanofabrica, which has now been acquired by Nano dimension.

For more than 30 years, Accumold has built a reputation as a leader in the art and science of micro-molding and regularly undertakes high volume production of tiny plastic parts and components (or larger parts with characteristics complex) for an international and pan-industrial customer base. The company exists in a world where tolerances are measured at the micron or submicron level and is the world’s only truly vertically integrated micro-moulder with design, micro-tooling, micro-molding, validation and l automated assembly under one roof.

Roger Hargens, CEO and President of Accumold said: “As a company, we pride ourselves on staying one step ahead of the evolution of new technologies and techniques. This is symbolized by the fact that to achieve the exacting tolerances that matter to our customers, we have developed our own micro-molding technologies that surpass all standard injection molding technologies serving the micro-manufacturing industry. For many years we have kept an eye on AM / industrial 3D printing to see how technology can be of use to us and our customers, but until we are introduced to the Fabrica group, all technologies commercially available were insufficient in terms of precision. and achieving tolerance, speed and repeatability. We are truly delighted to have received delivery of the micro AM Fabrica 2.0 machine from Fabrica Group, and we see this as an important strategic decision that will further strengthen our credentials as a market leader in the field of micro-molding. It also plays into the fact that the future of AM is not a replacement for the traditional manufacturing processes we use on a daily basis, but rather a complementary technology that adds to the agility and versatility of product development departments. .

Fabrica 2.0 from Fabrica Group brings the benefits of AM for the first time to micro-manufacturers such as Accumold, including previously impossible part complexity (improved design and functionality), no tooling costs , minimal installation costs and the ability to customize and mass personalize products. A versatile technology suitable for prototyping, small series and mass production, the Fabrica 2.0 drives innovation in the micro-manufacturing sector.

Technology is driven by innovation in hardware, software and materials. It uses adaptive optics that electronically controls critical optical working point parameters such as focus, tilt, and astigmatism. In addition, it incorporates an optomechanical device that facilitates real-time corrections of other working parameters – primarily location and accuracy in the XY plane – and also corrects for degrees of freedom such as oscillation to allow better surface finish on parts.

The Fabrica 2.0 Micro 3D Printer also uses a ‘multi-resolution’ strategy, which means that the areas, where fine detail is required, are printed relatively slowly, but when the details are not so precise, the part is printed. at speeds of 10 to 100. times faster. This makes the total print speed 5-100 times faster than other micro 3D printer platforms.

Other enabling technologies for Accumold in Fabrica 2.0 are algorithms used to control and optimize hardware. It uses closed-loop feedback algorithms to increase production accuracy and repeatability, and positioning errors are corrected using laser distance measurements. Another family of algorithms focus on custom file preparation, print angle optimization, build plate orientation, and supports, all to ensure accurate, fast and accurate part production. profitable.

Rigorous R&D has led to the development of exclusive materials for Fabrica 2.0 (based on the most commonly used industrial polymers such as ABS and PP) with changes in polymerization radii, viscosity, surface tension and of spectral-optical penetration depth that allow ultra-high resolution fabrication in parts.

The combination of hardware, software and hardware innovations means that the Fabrica 2.0 micro 3D printer can be applied to the most demanding micro-manufacturing applications.

Hargens, Accumold, continued: “The extremely impressive technology that Fabrica Group has developed will add significant possibilities for us and our customers very soon. With the Fabrica 2.0, we can already cater to customers requiring small to medium size prints in an economical manner, as the same economies of scale do not exist when using AM compared to traditional molding technologies. We can also create micro-parts with impossible geometric complexity or at prohibitive cost using the micro molding process. However, it is in the area of ​​Rapid Direct Soft Tooling (DRST) that we see huge opportunities for the future. The precision of Fabrica 2.0 and the robustness of the materials used mean that the technology can produce DRSTs that can be used on traditional molding machines. This opens up new business possibilities for us and our customers, as until now we were limited to using long lead time and expensive molding tools made in the traditional way for making any molding volume. , from a prototype, all the way through to mass production. The Fabrica 2.0 drives the business case for a process chain that includes DRST, with the potential for significantly shorter file-to-part-injected turnaround times and reduced costs from several thousand dollars to several tens. It will be a game-changer for some of our clients. “

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