new technology

From: Elaine Hunt (
Date: Fri Jan 15 1999 - 22:36:23 EET

Cockroft will evaluate a low cost high speed, high resolution hybrid
resin for rapid prototyping (RP). In polymer-based RP systems, the laser
subsystem is the major bottleneck in throughput and is the principal
cost driver. Twin innovations will serve to minimize these effects: (1)
a novel resin system that cures upon exposure to infrared (IR) radiation;
and (2) replacement of a single-beam UV laser with an inexpensive
linear array of IR lasers having tens of thousands of emitters. Instead of
   a flying spot driven by a modulator and deflection mirrors, a linear
array can be shuttled across the work surface, completing one layer per
sweep. Instead of varying the dwell time to control shrinkage, the output
intensity of individual emitters will be variably controlled. Potential
commercial applications include all present and future polymer-based
rapid prototyping systems. Markets include new equipment sales, retrofits
to existing systems, and after market sales of resin and replacement
parts. Instead of employing a $100,000 UV laser with a lifetime less
than 5,000 hours, one IR array with a lifetime in excess of 100,000 hours
can be employed at only slightly greater expense. The net result is a
significant reduction in subsystem complexity and cost of ownership,
coupled with order of magnitude increases in throughput and reliability.
Opinions, suggestions, and other controversial matter VOID where prohibited.
Elaine T. Hunt, Director
Clemson University Laboratory to Advance Industrial Prototyping
206 Fluor Daniel Bldg. Clemson, SC 29643-0925
864-656-0321 (voice) 864-656-4435 (fax)

For more information about the rp-ml, see

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