China-based Zhuhai CTC Electronic Co. announced its foray into the industrial 3D printing market by launching Riverbase 500, its first industrial SLA 3D printer featuring laser galvanometer scanning technology.
Recent data from US-based market research, analysis and advisory firm IDC showed that sales of industrial equipment and applications contributed to 70 percent of the sales in the 3D market, a trend that led to global leader 3D SYSTEM’s retreat from the desktop printing market at the end of 2015. Also, during the year, HP announced that the company will kick off an industrial inkjet 3D printer in the near future without involving itself in the desktop 3D printing market. As an industrial 3D printer outweighs a desktop peer in terms of technology requirements and market value, it was only a natural next step for desktop 3D printer leaders to expand into the industrial side of the market.
CTC’s new square-shaped printer is 1.75 meters in length, 1.10 meters in width, and 1.95 meters in height. With a basic brown-green color, it has a flexural inner panel and a box spanner that allows for a higher level of customization. The printer also comes equipped with stereolithography 3D printing functionality.
Stereolithography 3D printing is one of the most wildly used materials deposition-based 3D printing technologies for industrial applications. According to preliminary statistics, over 50 percent of industrial 3D printers installed across the world are stereolithography ones.
The Riverbase 500 laser stereolithography 3D printer features include: stable operation and mobility of high precision-screw rails; negative pressure-and-adsorption-based system enabling reliable and uniform coatings; automated optimization of software-designed scanning paths, which allows for faster processing; online measurement of laser power; setting and optimization of technological parameters; automated liquid level control, which ensures precision of product processing; solid design; and high level of automation, which supports fully automated control and 24-hour unattended processing.