VELO3D has received its largest order yet for its Sapphire metal 3D printers. According to the company, it is preparing to deliver an additional four Sapphire units to an existing customer in the aerospace industry. Once the recent 3D printer order is completed, the undisclosed client will be operating a total of nine Sapphire systems. The delivery of the systems will reportedly commence immediately and will be completed by the end of the year.
The California-based 3D printing company released the Sapphire system almost exactly a year ago, when it impressed the AM industry with its support-free metal 3D printing capabilities. Though many of VELO3D’s customers—including its leading aerospace client—have been working with the technology discretely, Boom Supersonic recently revealed it was utilizing the technology for its supersonic demonstrator aircraft. Stratasys Direct also invested in the technology this year, adding the Sapphire to its metal AM portfolio.
“We are excited to see customers ramping with Sapphire’s SupportFree capabilities,” commented Benny Buller, CEO of VELO3D. “It is clear from customer feedback on our first deliveries that the demand for SupportFree, production ready, Sapphire metal 3D printers is strong and that we are exceeding expectations for the technology.”
The Sapphire system takes laser fusion metal 3D printing to a new level with its capability to print parts with overhangs lower than 10° and large inner diameters without the need for supports. The system is also characterized by a build envelope of 315 x 400 mm and an integrated in-situ process metrology that enables closed-loop melt pool control.
We recently spoke to Richard Nieset, Chief Customer Officer at VELO3D, who gave an in depth look at the company’s Sapphire system and its Intelligent Fusion technology. Throughout the interview, Nieset identified three key elements that set VELO3D’s technology apart from other laser fusion systems: software, closed loop control and the recoater process. The recent interview can be read in full here.