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Ricoh Finds First Customer for SLS 3D Printer – ENGINEERING.com

by • July 7, 2016 • No Comments

Large, mainstream createers have increasingly entered into the 3D printing space, aiming to leverage years of experience and brand recognition to grab a slice of the expanding market. Among those companies is Japanese multinational tech giant Ricoh, that has begun selling industrial 3D printing equipment under the RICOH brand and has may already discovered its initially customer, German laser experts Laser Zentrum Nord (LZN).
In a partnership with Japanese selective laser sintering (SLS) createer Aspect, Ricoh rebranded Aspect’s large-format SLS machine as the RICOH AM S5500P. The company is now in the process of marketing the process in Europe, that has led Ricoh to its initially customer, LZN.
With the RICOH AM S5500P, of left to right: Greg Plowman, director of the European AM Business Group for Ricoh Europe; David Mills, chief executive officer of Ricoh Europe; Claus Emmelmann of LZN; and Peter Williams, executive vice president of Ricoh Europe. (Image courtesy of Ricoh.)With the RICOH AM S5500P, of left to right: Greg Plowman, director of the European AM Business Group for Ricoh Europe; David Mills, chief executive officer of Ricoh Europe; Claus Emmelmann of LZN; and Peter Williams, executive vice president of Ricoh Europe. (Image courtesy of Ricoh.)
LZN has purchased the S5500P machine as a means to speed up the company’s 3D printing, research and making capabilities. First, Ricoh can install the process at LZN to train staff and provide technical assist. So, LZN can cooperate with Ricoh to create new materials and applications for the innovation.
With a significant create volume of 550 x 550 x 500 mm (21.7 x 21.7 x 19.7 in), the S5500P is capable of 3D printing polyamide 12 and polyamide 11 (PA12, PA11), and a glass bead-reinforced polyamide (PA6GB), as well as flexible, durable polypropylene (PP).
Through the use of eight infrared lamps and the heating of the create chamber on all six sides, the process is capable of maintaining tight thermal control, resulting in greater print high end and the aptitude to use the aforementioned PA6GB and PP powders. The S5500P showcases dual powder distribution as well.
LZN has previously demonstrated its expertise in laser innovation by laser welding a 3D-printed modular frame for EDAG’s many new concept car and it in addition manages a service bureau dedicated to 3D printing called Bionic Production. Through Bionic Production, LZN performs part screening, prints parts on demand and actually performs serial production. The division can now use the S5500P process to 3D print components for the aerospace and car industries.
To additional market the process throughout Europe, Ricoh opened its initially RICOH Rapid Fab facility in Telford, England. There the company can provide create, 3D printing, post-processing and inspection services as well as consulting and training. The showroom can in addition enable future customers to learn additional of 3D printing overall.


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