ZHUHAI, China, June 24, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- With the growing popularity of desktop 3D printers, the inexpensive FDM version is currently the mainstream option of the market. However, a growing number of users are demanding 3D printers with a higher level of accuracy and optimized performance. In response to this trend, the desktop SLA 3D printer, based on laser irradiation liquid injection molding, is quickly becoming the preference among 3D printing professionals. The commonly used resin plate of existing equipment, such as the Form 1, is extremely vulnerable and the molding efficiency is low, which, to a large degree, have ruined user experience and held back buying. This new solution is providing an opportunity for a turnaround.
Zhuhai CTC Electronic Co., Ltd, a prominent China-based 3D printer manufacturer, has announced that the company will soon unveil the Riverside Photocuring 3D Printer equipped with a resin plate with the longest longevity to date at China (Qingdao) International Software Convergence & Innovation Expo 2015 in early July.
It will be the world's first high resolution 3D printer that is truly affordable for the ordinary user, with the price point set at USD1,480 in the U.S. and RMB13,800 in China, a price point quite a bit lower than that of MakerBot. Similar to other popular SLA printers, the printer uses a specially-made liquid resin that is sensitive to the 405nm UV wavelength and that can be shaped into a monolayer slice, and subsequently accumulated into a three-dimensional object.
As the printer is aimed at high usability, Riverside's minimum layer thickness is 0.1mm, rather thanthe 0.025mm commonly adopted by other printers. The designers are of the opinion that the excessively thin layer has little effect on the outer surface yet greatly prolongs the duration of the printing process as well aslowers the likely success of the printed output from 95% to less than 40%. When printing the maximum allowed size forthree-dimensional objects (135mm x 135mm x 180mm), the printer provides for highly refined detailing and a smooth surface! It is expected that the most commonly used material will be resin and the entire printing process can be executed quite quickly. Zhuhai CTC has stated that its software kit provides interfaces for most leading CAD software, enabling easy transition to printing after the molding. The entire printing process is expected to become as simple and convenient as printing out text on a piece of paper from an ordinary printer.
On the software side, Zhuhai CTC has developed slicing software and a high-performing operatingsystem based on open-source Cura Engine and Repetier Host in tandem with CTC Riverside proprietary firmware to control the laser and the scanning galvanometer mirror positioning system.
Riverside has not only reduced ownership cost, but also aggressively lowered the printing cost by revolutionizing the resin plate. A special thin film has replaced the transparent silica gel as the resin plate's medium. This special thin film can effectively separate curing resin and the base and can handle a much larger volume of printing before needing to be replaced. These revolutionary improvements extends the plate's service life from a mere dozen or so days to several months, greatly reducing the printing cost.
He Siyi, Head of Public Relations at CTC Electronic, said, "Our goal is to allow the designer to have access to an affordable and reliable tool and provide an all-new product-verification solution."
Riverside will be available in the U.S., China, the E.U. and Australia starting this July. The official distribution channel is www.ctcprinter.com. Clients can also purchase the printer through known E-business providers including eBay and Amazon.
CTC Riverside 3D Printer specifications
- Molding technology: SLA
- Operating system: Repetier-Host
- Slicing software: Cura
- Firmware: CTC Riverside 1.0
- Printing supplies: liquid light-sensitive resin
- Print size: 135 x 135 x 180mm
- Print layer thickness: 100micrometers (minimum)
- Document format: STL
- Printer overall dimensions: 35 x 38 x 55cm
- Weight: 10 kg
SOURCE Zhuhai CTC Electronic Co., Ltd