3D Printing ProcessesMetal Additive Manufacturing

Desktop Metal and Stratasys show metal 3D printed production parts

Other than the fact that Stratasys – like GE, HP and Desktop Metal – is set on introducing a bound powder metal 3D printing technology we did not know much about the characteristics that the actual AM process would have. Now we have seen the first parts made with Stratasys’ new metal 3D printer. At the same time, Desktop Metal is also showing off the first metal parts that came out of its Production system.

We do know quite a lot more about Desktop Metal’s technology targeted at metal part production. For example, we know that its breakthrough Single Pass Jetting (SPJ) process is expected to deliver speeds up to 8200 cm3/hr–100x faster than laser-based systems. We also expect that it will be MIM powder based and that it is expected to support a wide selection of metals including 316L and 17-4 PH Stainless steel, as well as H13 Tool Steel, Inconel 625 (a nickel-based superalloy) 4140 Copper. Development alloys include several types of steel, as well as titanium. Overall costs are expected to be up to 20X lower than current PBF technologies.

Desktop Metal’s first metal parts 3D printed using the new Production system.

What we do know about the new Stratasys technology is that it should be an inkjet-based process and that Stratasys has made strategic investments in both Desktop Metal and LPW, a major AM powder manufacturer. Stratasys also owns polyjet technology – possibly one of the most advanced current inkjet-based technologies – and the company is conveniently located near XJet – another developer of advanced inkjet 3D printing technologies for ceramics and metals (the company’s shared many executives, including Objet co-founder, and now XJet founder Hanan Gothait.

And now we also know that unfinished 3D printed parts look like this:

stratasys metal 3D printed parts

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Davide Sher

Over the last decade Davide has built up extensive experience as both a technology journalist and communications consultant. Born in Milan, Italy, he spent 12 years in the United States, where he received his undergraduate degree from SUNY Stony Brook. He is a senior analyst for US-based firm SmarTech Publishing focusing on the additive manufacturing industry. He founded London-based 3D Printing Business Media Ltd. which specialises in media and communications services for the 3DP and AM industry, through which he runs 3D Printing Business Directory, the largest global directory of companies related to 3DP, as well as two editorial websites, 3D Printing Media Network and Il Replicatore.

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