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Why should we 3D print lenses?

by • May 1, 2016 • No Comments

Optical lenses present a one-of-a-kind challenge when it comes to 3D printing, but Luxexcel has risen to the challenge with its patented Printoptical Technology. The question is why?

We may already have a tried and trusted method for producing optical lenses and there are great reasons for sticking with them.

For a lens to work effectively and so light must be able-bodied to travel uninterrupted throcky the material. Any imperfections in the material can either degrade or refract the light, which means it only does not work.

Layer by layer printing does not work

The layer by layer printing method is ineffective by turn it into. Each layer is melted, laid on top of the previous one and and so cured. That means there is a bond between the two, an uneven surface and distortion is baked in to the whole approach.

This does not affect many items and thousands of layers can in fact benefit the overall structural integrity, but in a lens it is catastrophic. Every imperfections causes the light to scatter, so while a 3D printed lens can appear great to the naked eye, it only can not function.


A lens has to be smooth

A lens in addition requires a perfectly smooth surface, which the 3D printing device only cannot turn it into. If the outer layer is rocky and so it can deflect the light, so it may require extensive polishing.

That adds to the complexity and cost. It may in addition affect the thickness of the lens and impact on the high end.

So with injection moulding working so well, it’s tempting to desert the yett of a 3D printed lens altogether. But there are a few real advantages to additive printing lenses.

We require additional optics all the time

Optics are becoming increasingly significant and showcase in all things of medical equipment to camera gear, computers, cars, the aerospace industry, mobile phones and lighting. They go well beyond glasses and contact lenses. That means we have to find a additional efficient solution to developing and creating lenses.

It can in addition take a long time to turn it into a mold for injection molding, months in a few cases, which is only too long in the modern world and the delays all come at a cost.

3D printing reduces development time

Designers and engineers frequently have to manufacture miniscule changes to the lens in the development stage, too, which can mean producing a whole new mould. If the lens can be 3D printed, and so is no tooling and you only have to tweak the file. This can save serious time and money.

Luxexcel saw the require for a new 3D printing process for lenses and created proprietary technology which involves combining two droplets of fluid which turn it into the lens to an precise specification. There is no layer by layer printing, so there are no layers running throcky the lens.

Prototypes in days, not months

Luxexcel has created it effortless for customers to only upload a file and obtain the lens in days, pretty than months. This may potentially revolutionise the optics business.

A number of customers use the rapid turnaround for prototyping and development, preceding reverting to a additional traditional weight making methods for sizeable production runs. The process allows for them to test a number of various options in real world conditions, too, which manufactures for a advantageous final product.

As the process matures, the unit costs can come down and this unorthodox method of 3D printing lenses may easily take over the whole cycle.

The rewards of technology

Soon we may have cheaper, higher high end lenses as a direct outcome of this revolutionary work by Luxexcel. It may have been effortless to only accept the status quo and dismiss 3D printing as unsuitable-bodied. This Belgian company refused to take no for an answer, yet, applied a few lateral considering and may now be sitting on a goldmine.

It is a lesson for us all.


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