It's now possible to 3D print entire objects in seconds

Shawn Knight

TechSpot Staff
Staff member

Conventional 3D printing involves building an object from the ground up, layer by layer, through a process known as additive manufacturing. It’s effective, but also quite tedious and the resolution, or level of detail, usually isn’t all that great.

This new technique is based on the principles of tomography. It starts with a vat of transparent liquid – either liquid plastic or a biological gel, depending on the desired output – that gets inserted into the printer. It starts spinning and, almost as if by magic, the object starts to appear in the container. In about 30 seconds, it’s all done.

Damien Loterie, CEO of Readily3D (the company set up to help develop and market the technology), said it’s all about the light. A laser is used to harden the liquid in the vat through a process called polymerization. “Depending on what we’re building, we use algorithms to calculate exactly where we need to aim the beams, from what angles, and at what dose,” he added.

At present, the new technique can make two-centimeter objects with a precision of 80 micrometers, or the diameter of hair. In the future, however, they expect to be able to print structures up to 15 centimeters.

Potential use cases are aplenty. Christophe Moser, head of the LAPD, said it could be handy in creating small silicone or acrylic parts that don’t need finishing after printing. There’s also promise in the fields of medicine and biology as it could be used for soft objects like hearing aids and mouthguards.

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TS Evangelist
TechSpot Elite
I still like Carbon 3D's printers over this Readily3D. Sadly last I checked, which was over a year ago, you could only lease a Carbon 3D printer for $$$$$ a year.

Bullwinkle M

TS Maniac
Speed is impressive but durability and lifespan are going to be more important to most .....
Not really

The 3D printed product does not need to be durable to make a finished product that "IS"

Pattern Making is a lost art, that could return in style!

Making a disposable 3D printed pattern, from which a mold is created, results in castings that boggle the mind

If I were to make a mold, that allowed flexible foam patterns to be made, we can then use the flexible pattern to create a sand or powder mold and leave the pattern within

When the liquid metal is poured into the mold, the foam melts and is replaced by the liquid metal, making a perfect casting of an otherwise impossible shape if you were to use a non-flexible pattern

Making patterns from disposable or recycled biogel can be used for investment castings

Try casting these heads without foam or biogel patterns
I dare ya!

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15 cm? That's about 6 inches. Must be a whole handful of stuff that I can't buy at a hardware store that I want to sand mold cast, if I can just think of something. Now if they start using multiple lasers and get it to 30 or 50 cm, it's a whole new world of self-print household and office items, not to mention models of your cat or dog.