Autodesk is no longer manufacturing Ember printers. Sales of all Ember consumables, including resins, trays, and build heads, have been transitioned to Colorado Photopolymer Solutions, Autodesk’s partner for the last several years in developing new resins. The company has a deep materials knowledge and the ability to manufacture resins on demand, plus the ability to create custom resins for users with specific requirements.
In spite of yet another setback in its maker and open source support programs, the company – which still has a very significant stake in advancing additive manufacturing optimized software – remains committed to customer support and consumables for Ember 3D printers will remain available.
In fact CPS will be introducing an investment casting resin that was developed in partnership with Autodesk. This resin burns out very cleanly and produces excellent detail in printed parts. It is formulated to be exceptionally gentle on PDMS, which means that trays will last longer than with other casting resins. CPS will also be selling a second casting resin that they developed internally, as well as a few other new resins with various elastomeric properties.
The Ember team is now focused more than ever on new research to advance the 3D printing industry. The new Ember Research Hub will continue to provide support and drive conversations across the community relating to SLA technology. CPS will also be active on the forum to answer questions and join the discussion. Print Studio is being succeeded by Netfabb, which has the same capabilities, plus much more. Even if no longer supported, Print Studio, will remain available for download.
Autodesk’s goal in launching the Ember printer in 2014 was to demonstrate the power of an open and connected system with software, hardware, and materials all developed together in hopes of advancing the industry in a significant way. In keeping with that open approach, Ember’s firmware and firmware design files – as well as its resin formulas – were all made available as open source to encourage community experimentation and advancements.
Although this open source approach did cause some upsets in the industry, the project also inspired new companies to develop materials for SLA printing that may not have been possible before. The team also tried hard to demonstrate how print speed can be impacted with a connected system and how it is possible to achieve sub-pixel resolution.