With the new Ultimaker Alliances Program, users will be able to load preconfigured material profiles and 3D print settings from leading material manufacturers.
Here’s a second big announcement from Ultimaker; the 3D printing company is embarking on a series of collaborative alliances with a number of global material companies to meet demand for 3D printer engineering materials.
“High quality 3D prints are the result of an optimized alignment of hardware, software and materials,” said Jos Burger, CEO of Ultimaker.
“The strategic alliances formed […] open up the use of the most sophisticated engineering plastics on Ultimaker printers. customers of the companies and Ultimaker fully embed 3D printing in their existing workflows. With these alliances, more 3D printing users are getting access to sophisticated materials for all kinds of use cases in different segments and industries.”
Partners of the alliance program include DSM, BASF, Dupont Transportation & Advanced Polymers, Owens Corning, Mitsubishi, Henkel, Kuraray, Solvay and Clariant.
Additionally, Ultimaker will offer its software and material knowledge to help partnering companies to generate and maintain their material profiles. In return, this ensures that customers are using reliable materials with their Ultimaker 3D printers.
Furthermore, the new material profiles let users print automatically and use preconfigured settings available in Ultimaker Cura software. In the future, the partnerships could also help nurture more advanced applications.
Alliances Program to Benefit Rapid Protoyping Stages
Global spending on 3D printing technologies is forecast to reach almost $12 billion by 2018, according to research company IDC. With 3D printers popular with enterprise businesses, there’s a higher demand for materials usable throughout the product development process.
For example, a car manufacturer may use a certain plastic to develop most of their parts. At the same time, they could use the materials to print 3D prototypes or end user parts.
The Ultimaker 3D printers have been a key part of Decathlon’s Add Lab, which has been trying to make sports more accessible through improving production and lower prices. Julien Guillen, Leader Additive Manufacturing at the company explained that the Ultimaker S5 allows them to print footwear and helmets.
“Due to the open filament system, we can print […] objects with the materials we prefer – we can test, fail, and improve,” he said.
“We can change the way we prototype, the way we create. This allows us to speed up innovation and evaluate new concepts in an earlier stage, which reduces time and costs. The Ultimaker S5, combined with Ultimaker Cura software, seamlessly fits in our development chain. usability the Decathlon Add Lab’s team deliver the right products for our users, at the right time.”
Source: Press Release