The development of scientists at the University of Michigan will increase the speed of 3D printing
The low speed of 3D printing slows down its mass implementation. The technology has already proved its effectiveness in various fields, from production to medicine. Specialists have already managed to achieve good quality and functionality of finished products. But sometimes it takes too long to wait.
Experts from the University of Michigan have found a solution to this problem. According to the researchers, their technique can speed up 3D printing 100 times.
How to increase the speed of 3D printing
The essence of the method proposed by experts is to use special resins. In this way, you can not only speed up the process, but also increase the strength and durability of the finished product. This became known from a press release published on the official website of the University of Michigan.
3D printing is already being actively introduced in industries that require the production of relatively small batches of products. For example, if you need to make up to 10 thousand items, this technique is ideal. In addition, thus it is possible to significantly save on molds, which can cost the company tens of thousands of dollars. However, modern 3D printing capabilities are insufficient. Objects are created in layers, but it is impossible to restore the layer in a short time. Therefore, it is difficult to meet the standard deadline of 14 days.
To implement the new method, a special resin is used, solidifying under the influence of two light sources. They are adjustable, so that specialists can independently choose the points at which the material will harden. It is possible to leave it in liquid form.
During the tests, the researchers produced a 3D-bas-relief. It managed to be done at a time, without the need for applying one-dimensional lines. In addition, scientists have created several more figures, including a lattice, a small boat, as well as the letter "M" – a symbol of the University of Michigan.
The authors of the study argue that it is one of the first models that can be called a full-fledged 3D printer. Experts also explained why it is necessary to use two light sources. The first is used to start the solidification reaction of the resin, and the second stops it. Thus, researchers have the opportunity to control the operation of the device not only in time but also in space.
However, the method proposed by scientists at the University of Michigan is also not ideal. It has some shortcomings. In particular, the material can crystallize on the glass, through which the light from the sources passes. Therefore, the printing will stop and the item will need to be replaced. However, if you need to create a large area, but do not need to solidify the resin, this solution will be ideal.
In addition, this material has another important advantage over ordinary plastic threads. Products that a 3D printer prints out of resin are more reliable. Cast objects have no weaknesses, and analogues made of plastic threads tend to collapse at the boundaries of the layers.
Specialists of the University of Michigan believe that this method is the future. They are confident that after completion, the technology will be of interest to manufacturing enterprises from various fields.