Trade shows are always great showcases for new products, either as they’re officially launching or before they go on the market, and formnext in November was certainly no exception. At that time, Renishaw introduced the new RenAM 500Q four-laser 3D printing system, a machine that, thanks to its four lasers, speeds up the production process by up to four times. This week saw the RenAM 500Q officially go on the market, bringing improved productivity to the most commonly used platform size in metal 3D printing.

The 500Q is named for its 500W lasers, which enter the build area through four channels, where they are dynamically focused and directed into a single, thermally controlled galvanometer mounting. The mounting houses four pairs of digitally controlled guided mirrors, which direct the lasers to cover the entire area of the powder bed. Because of the additional process emissions caused by the four lasers, an inert gas recirculation system including a cyclone pre-filter and gas intercooler preserve filter life and create consistent clean processing conditions throughout the build.

Showcasing the benefit of a four-laser system at formnext 2017 [Photo: Sarah Goehrke]

The 500Q also incorporates dual SafeChange filters with automated changeover, minimizing the need for manual intervention and maintaining powder condition for maximum reuse.

Because it speeds up the process by up to four times, the RenAM 500Q creates new applications for new industries, reducing the cost per part while maintaining the quality and precision of a standard single-laser system.

“Renishaw’s additive manufacturing machines and optical systems are designed, engineered and manufactured in-house, giving us exceptional control over system performance,” said Robin Weston, Marketing Manager at Renishaw’s Additive Manufacturing Products Division. “Using innovative design of the optical system and by incorporating digital controls and dynamic focussing, all four lasers can address the powder bed simultaneously – improving the speed, productivity and capability of the machine. Additive manufacturing is a key enabler of the optical system. It allows tighter packaging of mirrors and the incorporation of internal conformal cooling channels to maintain precise thermal stability.”

The RenAM 500Q isn’t all that’s new for Renishaw this week. Chief Executive Sir David McMurtry is stepping down from his position and will be handing the reins to William Lee, effective today. McMurtry will remain with the company as Executive Chairman responsible for group innovation and product strategy.

Lee has been with Renishaw for more than two decades, joining the company in 1996 in the area of new product research. He then headed up the laser and calibration product line and the machine tool product line before being appointed to the Board as Group Sales and Marketing Director in 2016. He has a degree in physics from Oxford University and an MBA from Bath University.

“I am delighted that Will has demonstrated to me the leadership capabilities to continue to develop the Renishaw business and as result I am pleased to hand over my role as Chief Executive,” said McMurtry. “I am confident that Will can inspire the next generation to build on Renishaw’s heritage and we are looking forward to working closely together.”

Discuss this and other 3D printing topics at 3DPrintBoard.com or share your thoughts below.

[Images: Renishaw]

 

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