Israel-based Nano Dimension is taking its electronics 3D printing technology to the next level with the launch of the new DragonFly Lights-Out Digital Manufacturing (LDM) system. The industrial 3D printing system builds on the company’s established PCB 3D printing process, adding increased automation for 24/7 lights-out digital manufacturing. The new system is expected to unlock opportunities for low-volume manufacturing of multilayer PCBs, capacitors, coils, sensors, antennas and more.
Nano Dimension first hinted that it was preparing to launch a new system earlier this month alongside the less exciting announcement that it was consolidating its workforce significantly. Today, the first details about the new system, the DragonFly LDM, have been revealed.
Broadly, the system aims to take electronics 3D printing beyond prototyping, transitioning to in-house, lights-out digital production for circuitry and other printed electronics. The biggest update to the 3D printer—compared to the DragonFly Pro—is a new and proprietary technology that enables 24/7 uninterrupted 3D printing. The new printer also boasts optimized Overall Equipment Effectiveness (OEE) and an improved workflow.
Some of the key elements to enabling the continuous production of electronics are a new advanced printer head software management system and an automated, self-cleaning print head configuration, which keep the machine running smoothly throughout and between prints. The DragonFly LDM is also equipped with real-time automatic material monitoring capabilities and reduces the need for maintenance and machine down time.
Notably, the new system is available to existing Nano Dimension customers—who opted to install the DragonFly Pro 3D printer—as an upgrade to their in-house systems.
HENSOLDT x Nano Dimension
Nano Dimension introduced its new 3D printer today at HENSOLDT, a German sensor and defense electronics provider. The DragonFly LDM was installed at the company’s Munich-based facility to mark its launch on the market.
HENSOLDT and Nano Dimension have been well acquainted over the years. For instance, in 2016, the sensor manufacturer adopted Nano Dimension’s DragonFly technology to assess the possibilities of the process. Then, in January 2019, the companies revealed a joint project to advance and develop new applications for electronics 3D printing, especially in relation to HENSOLDT’s sensor business.
One of the issues identified by HENSOLDT when using the electronics 3D printing method was that the system required a “high amount of personal care” to keep running smoothly. Nano Dimension clearly took this feedback in stride when developing its latest system. HENSOLDT also provided vital feedback by generating reference circuits in the development of the LDM system. These tests indicated a number of improvements in the system, including higher print times of about 40%.
“The DragonFly LDM is a necessary evolutionary setup up from the DragonFly Pro, enabling low-volume manufacturing of electronic circuits fast and easy to do in-house, with minimal operator time,” said said Andreas Salomon, project leader for 3D printed electronics at HENSOLDT. “It will be a great addition for Hensoldt, enabling us to develop innovative applications faster and with far better machine availability and lower maintenance than ever before.”
Amit Dror, CEO and Co-Founder of Nano Dimension, added: “The DragonFly LDM is designed to help our customers prepare for Industry 4.0. and stay competitive in a world that demands electronic devices with increasingly sophisticated features. Like its predecessor, the DragonFly Pro, it’s the first of its kind on the market, carefully designed for both ease-of-use and even more agile, faster and affordable 3D printing of functional circuitry. We’re confident that the LDM system will provide best in class additive manufacturing of printed electronics on the market, making it possible for companies to be more innovative, improve productivity and reliability, lower costs and reduce time-to-market.”
The new electronics 3D printing system is now available through Nano Dimension’s global sales channel.