Every January, CES is a gathering place for companies introducing the newest and coolest technology, as well as for spectators who want to get a first look at that technology. There are always plenty of 3D printing revelations at the show, and one of the biggest at CES 2017 was the Metal X, Markforged‘s first metal 3D printer. The 3D printer leverages the company’s brand new 3D printing technology, Atomic Diffusion Additive Manufacturing, or ADAM.
ADAM 3D prints parts from metal powder contained in a plastic binder, which is removed after printing. At that point, the 3D printed part is sintered, which allows metal crystals to grow through the printed layers, giving the part superior strength. The technology is fast, inexpensive, and capable of 3D printing parts with complex geometries that other technologies cannot handle. ADAM was built upon Markforged’s carbon fiber 3D printing technology, and can create metal parts with the same quality as competitors at a fraction of the time and cost. The technology is part of the team’s vision for a future of scaled up metal additive manufacturing.
Since its early 2017 introduction, the Metal X has been a major focus for Markforged as the systems have gotten closer to market. This week, Markforged announced that it has begun shipping Metal X 3D printers to customers and resellers. The company has also completed the first installation of the full Metal X system – Metal X 3D printer, Sinter-1 and Wash-1 – at STANLEY Infrastructure Innovation Center, a division of Stanley Black & Decker.
STANLEY Infrastructure is the world’s largest handheld hydraulic tool manufacturer and a market leader. It offers over 150 handheld hydraulic tools and over 30 mounted impact tools. STANLEY turned to Markforged looking for a quicker and more cost-effective way to manufacture complex, low-volume parts. STANLEY tested the performance, life cycle and durability of two metal parts 3D printed on the Metal X, and estimated more than 95% cost savings as well as 50% reduction in the weight of the parts.
“For our team, the Markforged Metal X printing system requires minimal capital and time investment to make the parts we need,” said Harry Zhong, Technical Lead, STANLEY Infrastructure Innovation team. “With Markforged, we believe that we can save thousands of dollars per year per part while retaining the quality and reliability we expect from traditionally machined parts. These kinds of innovations from Markforged are going to fundamentally change the way we think about manufacturing.”
“Markforged systems, such as the Metal X, are changing the way businesses produce strong parts while dramatically impacting the delivery times, cost, and supply chain logistics,” said Greg Mark, Founder and CEO of Markforged. “We’re thrilled that STANLEY Infrastructure recognizes the value in the acceleration and cost savings that 3D printing low volume metal can add to traditional manufacturing processes.”
STANLEY Infrastructure and other customers of Markforged can produce high-quality parts at much lower cost, and in reduced time, on the Metal X. You can learn more about the Metal X, and request a quote, here.
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