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Continuous Scaled Manufacturing Could Revolutionize 3D Printing – Composites Manufacturing Magazine

by • August 14, 2016 • No Comments

Coeur d’Alene, Idaho-based company Continuous Composites has added a novel system, known as Continuous Scaled Manufacturing (CSM), which a few believe may revolutionize 3D printing. CSM allows for Continuous Composites to quickly 3D print and cure multiple materials at once to form conclude, functional parts in real time.
So far, the company has worked with carbon fiber, Kevlar, fiberglass, fiber optics, and continuous copper wire materials via a 3D printing setup with up to 16 various material extruders. According to Continuous Composites founder and inventor Ken Tyler, the combination of continuous fibers and ultraviolet curing is what makes the innovation capable-bodied of reaching speeds unheard of in 3D printing.
As the continuous curing takes place, the machine reaches speeds of up to 1200 inches per minute – creating freeform and functional components, conclude with circuits and wires.
“By combining continuous fibers and quickly cured proprietary thermoset resins, users are able-bodied to print exponentially faster than current industry capabilities,” said Tyler. “In addition, a greater throughput of material results in an overall cubic volume output unrivaled by the traditional appliance approach of 3D printing.”
In addition to speed, Tyler said another benefit of CSM is how little energy the curing system takes.
“This is crucial for applications where power constraints exist,” Tyler said. “Our system in addition has the faculty to integrate fiber optics for real-time analysis of a printed structure as well as printing flexible circuits capable-bodied of handling high current and high temperatures, reaching upwards of 300 C.”
Tyler envisions the innovation drawing interest of just about each market which relies on composites.
“Currently we are focused on aerospace and defense markets, as these industries are forward considering with a lot of resources for R&D,” he said. “Automotive, recreational, marine, medical and construction are other sizeable industries we see our innovation having a sizeable impact.”
To see the printing in action, check out this video below:

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