After developing a unique quality control package, Riven has expanded its capabilities for producing quality parts with 3D printing. The company’s new re-scaling tool automatically re-scales models for 3D printed parts so that they can more accurately match the as-intended CAD file.scaling
Riven is among the few firms focusing on a low-cost and easy method for validating part designs before they head to final manufacturing. Through a subscription plan, customers get a desktop 3D scanner and Riven’s software package that makes it possible to 3D scan and validate parts during the early stages of production. Once a prototype is made—whether via metal injection molding, 3D printing, or other manufacturing process—the component is scanned and checked against the original CAD file to look for discrepancies. These models can then be addressed, saving money, time, and labor before heading to production.
The new 3D re-scaling tool automatically repairs some of the issues that may be discovered with the 3D scanning process of Riven’s workflow. After Riven’s software checks a test part, it re-scales portions of the model to compensate for distortions that may occur during 3D printing. The company claims that this applies to parts made with fused deposition modeling, vat photopolymerization, powder bed fusion, and most metal 3D printing.
The process is said to take only a few minutes and can aid in quickly repairing files after changing materials, print settings, or printing in a different location within the print envelope. The company states that it can also be used to calibrate the complete build volume for binder jet systems and other industrial 3D printers. Other tools that Riven’s software includes are its Push-button CAD-Compare, Digital Go/No Go, Click-to-Measure, and Automatic Scan-to-CAD reverse engineering software.
There are a variety of traditional quality control companies that provide tools for validating parts during the production process, but very few that have a focus on 3D printing or are able to do automatically repair files. These range from traditional coordinate measuring machine manufacturers, which can be particularly limited when it comes to the complex geometries of 3D printed parts, to much more complex and expensive software like CADIQ.
For 3D printing specifically, there are firms working to improve models before they are printed, such as ANSYS and VELO3D, as well as those that perform quality control during the 3D printing process, like Sigma Labs and Additive Assurance. As for validating parts once they’re printed and then repairing them, I believe the closest competitor would be Geomagic from 3D Systems. How they compare is another story, however. From what I gather, Riven is geared toward quick and easy repairs, whereas Geomagic may be a bit more complex. Either way, don’t expect this space to be too small for too long. Now that 3D printing is increasingly industrialized, quality control and post-processing will be getting a lot more attention.
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