December 5, 2018
3D Systems recently extended its DMP (Direct Metal Printing) platform series with its introduction of the DMP Flex 350 and DMP Factory 350 metal additive manufacturing systems. Both, 3D Systems says, are engineered for repeatable 24/7 metal part production for R&D, application development and production. The company adds that these 3D printers are optimized for scalability, high throughput and low total cost of operation. In related news, the company introduced an aluminum alloy material called LaserForm AISiMg0.6(A).
3D Systems describes its DMP metal 3D printing technology as designed for volume production of components in diverse applications in such industries as aerospace, healthcare and transportation. Possible usages include lightweight designs, orthopedic implants, conformal cooling and topology optimization. The DMP platform design also enables users to scale from the DMP Flex 350 to the DMP Factory 350 as their production needs evolve.
The DMP Flex 350—the successor to 3D Systems’ ProX DMP 320 metal 3D printer—is said to enable more efficient production of very dense, pure metal parts. 3D Systems says that the DMP Flex 350 offers an improved print productivity of 15% compared to its predecessor. This, the company says, provides users with such benefits as a faster time to market and lower total cost of operation.
The DMP Flex 350 deploys an improved gas flow technology for more uniform part quality across the entire build area. Additionally, 3D Systems notes that the unit's quick-swap build modules and fast powder recycling speed up production operations.
Among the DMP Flex 350's specifications are:
- Build volume: 10.82x10.82x14.96 in. (275x275x380 mm)
- Layer thickness: 10μm – 100μm; preset: 30 and 60 μm
- Typical accuracy: ± 0.1% to 0.2% with ± 50 μm minimum
- Minimum feature size: 100 μm
The field upgradable DMP Flex 350 comes with 3D Systems’ 3DXpert 14 software solution for the metal additive manufacturing workflow. Options include an external powder management unit and real-time process monitoring software.
The DMP Factory 350 offers the same features of the DMP Flex 350 combined with an integrated Powder Management Unit (PMU) that provides high-performance sieving and automated powder conveyance. The PMU's in-unit viewing panel enables users to visually inspect the ultrasonic sieve to help ensure incident-free operation.
In addition to 3DXpert 14 software, the DMP Factory 350 also includes 3D Systems’ DMP Monitoring real-time process monitoring software. This toolset, the company explains, allows users to analyze and optimize parameters for higher quality final parts.
3D Systems' new LaserForm AlSi7Mg0.6(A) aluminum alloy material is compatible with both the DMP Flex 350 and DMP Factory 350. The company reports that this new aluminum alloy material is designed to produce lightweight parts without the need for casting. It's also said to be designed for parts that enable improved fuel efficiency for transportation and other weight-sensitive applications. The company adds that the material’s corrosion resistance, high-thermal conductivity and electrical ductility as well as its good “weldability” are suitable for such applications as housings, mold inserts, impellers and heat exchangers.
Both new systems can work with a broad range of materials and support tested process parameters for the LaserForm family of materials. The DMP Flex 350 and DMP Factory 350 are targeted to be available shortly, according to 3D Systems. Starting prices are $575,000 for the DMP Flex 350 and $763,000 for the DMP Factory 350.
See why DE's Editors selected the DMP Flex 350 and DMP Factory 350 metal 3D printers as their Pick of the Week.
Sources: Press materials received from the company and additional information gleaned from the company's website.