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Rapid Pro to Typing

Rapid Pro to Typing

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Published by sangeethsreeni
From art to part is the main theme of rapid prototyping. A CAD model of the part is
sliced and downloaded to a rapid prototyping system to get a three-dimensional print of
the part. Rapid prototyping was first introduced with stereolithography from 3-d Systems
in 1988. Since then, there has been numerous type of rapid prototyping system being
introduced into the market.
From art to part is the main theme of rapid prototyping. A CAD model of the part is
sliced and downloaded to a rapid prototyping system to get a three-dimensional print of
the part. Rapid prototyping was first introduced with stereolithography from 3-d Systems
in 1988. Since then, there has been numerous type of rapid prototyping system being
introduced into the market.

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Published by: sangeethsreeni on Oct 07, 2009
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1
Rapid Prototyping (RP)
Introduction
 From art to part 
is the main theme of rapid prototyping. A CAD model of the part issliced and downloaded to a rapid prototyping system to get a three-dimensional print of the part. Rapid prototyping was first introduced with stereolithography from 3-d Systemsin 1988. Since then, there has been numerous type of rapid prototyping system beingintroduced into the market.However, in most cases, due to the limitation imposed on the technology as aresult of the available materials and systems, rapid prototyping is utilized to shorten theart to part cycle rather than using the rapid prototyping part as a functional part. Thisstream of applications includes design verification, reverse engineering, sand casting andinvestment casting.When the RP was first introduced the prediction were that it would sweep throughindustries. The result however was that the rapid prototyping equipment produced only plastic models which cannot be used as functional parts. The first rapid prototypingmodels were brittle objects made fairly loose tolerances. The technology continued toevolve in the areas of process adopted, materials used as well as the role of rapid prototyping model is expected to play. Engineers no longer build rapid prototypingmodels simply to check geometry against prints.In this lecture we will cover the process used, the system running the process andthe available rapid prototyping materials.
Types of Rapid Prototyping
There are several types of RP available in the market currently. We will look at the mostwidely known rapid prototyping system and their process in this lecture. The systems are:1.
 
Stereolithography (SLA)2.
 
Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM)3.
 
Solid Ground Curing (SGC)4.
 
Selection Laser Sintering(SLS)5.
 
Laminated Object Manufacturing (LOM)
 
2
Stereolithography (SLA)
First introduced in 1988, the stereolithography (SLA) used a laser beam to solidify thelayer of resin. In the process, the designs created on a CAD system is converted into.STL format. In this .STL format, the object is sliced into two-dimensional cross-sectionwith a slice thickness ranging from 0.0015Ó to 0.005Ó.The work area is spread with a thin layer of photopolymer in which each cross-sectional layer of the model is formed using a laser beam to solidify the layer of resin, infigure 1. As each layer solidifies, an elevator platform lowers the work piece to allowanother layer of resin to be applied. A wiper smoothes the layer to a proper thickness andthe next layer is drawn, adhering to the previous layer. The process is repeated until the part is completed. Each layer is not fully cured by laser, but instead with a thin wall and ahoneycomb internal structure which trap the uncured resin. The top and bottom surfacesof the part are fully cured by repeated passes made by the laser in a pattern of overlapping lines called skin-fill. Approximately 96 % of the part are solidified before the post-curing process. Final curing is achieved by placing the part in the curing oven,which floods the part with UV light to complete polymer solidification process.
Advantages:1.
 
Unattended operation
This system is fully automated that is doesnÕt require any attentionduring the operation.
2.
 
Good accuracy
The SLA able to produce a very high accuracy
0.001Ó
3.
 
High detail
SLA is capable of producing an intricate design with high precision.
4.
 
Surface finish
The Òprinted partÓ has a very smooth surface.
5.
 
Industry presence
SLA was the first RP to be introduced into the market. It constituted71% of the worldwide market based on sales.
Disadvantages:1.
 
Post-curing
This process requires post-curing to complete the solidification process. Some area of the parts did not solidify during the laser  beaming process.
2.
 
War page
The part may melt if exposed to high temperature for a period of time.
 
3
Figure.1 The StereoLithography Process
3.
 
Limited material
This process is limited by the use of polymers. Only certain polymerscan be used for the process.
4.
 
Supports
Support is always needed when the parts being ÒprintedÓ. Often theremoval of these supports can be difficult.

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