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Instantly understand 3D printing and see the magic of this technology

Author:QINSUN Released in:2024-01 Click:42

The concept of 3D printing can be traced back to the late 19th century, when the first industrial revolution was coming to an end, and the United States developed photographic sculpture and landscape shaping techniques.

So, some people began to think about whether there could be a printing technology that could print objects in three dimensions. Afterwards, the core manufacturing concept of 3D printing emerged.

In 1978, American scientist RF Householder obtained a patent for a technology similar to rapid prototyping (3D printer application), but it had not yet been widely applied by companies.

In 1989, C R. Deckard has developed the Selective Laser Sintering (SLS) process and obtained a patent, which is the core technology of 3D printers and marks the entry of 3D printing into the market.

Finally, in the late 1980s, American scientists invented a printer that could print three-dimensional effects and successfully pushed it to the market.

From then on, 3D printing technology has increasingly entered people's lives.

3D printing technology is presented by 3D printers, and conversely, the level of development of 3D printers also symbolizes the level of development of 3D printing technology.

A 3D printer, also known as a 3D printer (commonly known as 3DP), is a machine for rapid prototyping technology that uses a manufacturing method of layered printing and cumulative molding.

A 3D printer divides the target item layer by layer and uses adhesive materials such as special wax, powdered metal, or plastic to print layer by layer, then accumulates and finally prints the target item.

Printing technology is an important factor in distinguishing the types of 3D printers, and there are many types of printing technologies: LCD selective area transmission principle (LCD), melt deposition (FDM), digital light processing (DLP), etc.

The structural composition of a 3D printer can be divided into two major parts: hardware and software. Among them, the hardware part can be divided into mechanical part and electronic part.

Software part: equivalent to the command program of a drone, the 3D printer uses a layered printing and cumulative forming method for printing. The function of the printer software part is to divide the established target model layer by layer, providing coordinate instructions for the hardware part to be printed.

Mechanical part: refers to the physical composition of the printer, which is also the part used by the printer to execute software commands, equivalent to the body, tail, and other components of a drone. The mechanical part of the printer consists of components such as a motor, bracket, conveyor belt, support platform, and screw rod. These components form a three-dimensional space inside the printer casing, denoted as the XYZ axis, and the printer positions the printing based on these three axes during printing.

Electronic part: equivalent to the monitoring, storage, and other parts of a drone. It is a bridge that connects the software part and the mechanical part, mainly composed of control circuits, data processing circuits, input and output modules. Plays a role in providing data storage for software and driving, temperature control, and other functions for hardware.

Although divided into three parts, when printing, the three parts require deep collaboration to complete the printing.

The specific operation process of a 3D printer is as follows:

The first step is to use CAD software on the computer to model the target object.

The second step is to use removable storage tools such as USB drives to store the already built model in a 3D printer. The file format transferred through the removable storage tool must be STL or STP file format.

Step three, the printer reads the cross-sectional information (such as dimensions) of the model in the file and prints layer by layer using adhesive materials such as special wax, powdered metal, or plastic.

Step 4, stick the cross-sections of each layer together in an appropriate way and complete the printing process.

The printing process of 3D printers is not much simpler than traditional manufacturing, but 3D printing has many advantages over traditional manufacturing. Here are three prominent advantages of 3D printers:

The 3D printer utilizes the three axes of XYZ to locate every position in the printing space, enabling precise printing. By utilizing this technology, 3D printers can eliminate the need to worry about the complex process of the target item, and as long as there is a model of the target item, it can be printed, which is something that traditional manufacturing processes cannot compare to.

Compared to traditional processes such as injection molding, 3D printers use a combination of adhesive and materials. This method only requires no adhesive to be added in areas that do not require printing, so that unusable materials do not bind to the target item. After printing is completed, these unusable materials can be easily cleaned out, saving a lot of time. Moreover, the cleaned materials can be reused, and the material savings are much higher than traditional processes.

Due to the fact that 3D printers use raw materials such as various plastics, metals, and ceramics, some printers can combine these different materials to produce objects with different properties (such as hardness and strength) in different places, which traditional techniques cannot achieve.

In addition, 3D printers have many advantages over traditional processes, such as shorter production cycles and higher reliability.

The design of 3D printers using various advanced technologies such as CAD, CAM, CNC, precision servo drive, optoelectronics, and new materials is one of the manifestations of the new high dimensions in the integration of technology models.

In recent years, with the rapid development of 3D printing technology in the field of design, 3D printers have also begun to enter people's lives. However, due to their high prices, it is still difficult to promote them on a large scale.

With the continuous iteration of technology, it is believed that in the near future, the field of 3D printers will become an unprecedented large market, just as the Chinese Internet of Things School Enterprise Alliance calls it: "The ideas of the last century, the technology of the last century, the market of this century.".