In a move to expand the use of Optomec’s Aerosol Jet 3D printing technology for 3D printed electronics, the company has entered a global sales partnership with Delcam, an Autodesk company that develops advanced CADCAM software platforms for the manufacturing industry. Under the partnership agreement, Optomec will sell and support Delcam software products with their Aerosol Jet five-axis manufacturing systems used to 3D print electronics, sensors and antenna. The two companies started to work together in early 2015 to develop and enhance Delcam’s FeatureCAM software so it would be capable of supporting Optomec’s Aerosol Jet five-axis manufacturing system.
The partnership will allow industrial manufacturing companies to purchase Optomec’s industry-leading 3D printed electronics technology along with Delcam’s robust and popular additive manufacturing software. The new Delcam software is capable of creating additive five-axis tool paths for the Aerosol Jet systems. These tool paths can be used to 3D print sensors, antennas and other functional electronics onto 2D or 3D plastic, ceramic, or metallic surfaces using commercially-available conductive, dielectric, semiconductor or biologic inks. This eliminates the need for traditional hard tooling photomasks or stencils and allows changes to the design to be quickly implemented just by modifying the 3D design file.
“The core synergies between Delcam and Optomec will help us achieve more than we could if working independently. Together, we are placing an emphasis on innovation and collaboration to solve next generation manufacturing challenges of smart devices for consumer electronics, automotive, medical and industrial internet of things (IoT) applications,” said Optomec’s Director of Aerosol Jet Product Management, Mike O’Reilly.
The Optomec Aerosol Jet 3D printing technology can be used to easily and quickly 3D print traditionally complex electronic components. The Aerosol Jet technology has been used to successfully print resistors, capacitors, antennas, sensors, and thin film transistors. These components can be printed onto both 2D surfaces, or directly onto 3D surfaces, like antennas and sensors that will conform to any shape, such as the inside of a cell phone. This will eliminate the need to manufacture a second component, which will reduce the eventual size of the product, as well as the weight and thickness.
“Through this collaboration, Delcam and Optomec have developed and are delivering world-class, production ready additive manufacturing solutions to meet next generation printed electronic product challenges. We are excited about the possibilities,” said Delcam VP of Western US Sales Christian Briscoe.
This new partnership grew out of the initial strategic investment that Optomec received from Autodesk as part of their Spark Fund. The $100 million investment fund was created to support and help develop new ideas that would push the boundaries of 3D printing and help companies bring their ideas to market. Because the Spark Fund was created to provide more than financial support, Optomec was able to access Autodesk’s full portfolio of companies and products, which is how their partnership with Delcam began. The result was a new software solution that enhanced the already impressive Aerosol Jet technology capabilities, and allows companies who already have access to Delcam FeatureCAM software to seamlessly integrate the Optomec technology into their existing workflow. Discuss this partnership further in the Optomec & Delcam Furthering 3D Printed Electronics forum over at 3DPB.com.