DSM Somos(R), one of the world’s leading suppliers of stereolithography (SL) resins to the rapid prototyping (RP) industry, reports that successful use of Somos SL resins in the ViperT Pro SLA(R) system is growing. The Viper Pro is the latest large frame stereolithography machine developed by the 3D Systems(R) Corporation. Capable of producing large prototype parts with outstanding SL accuracy and surface finish, the Viper Pro is the only large frame SL machine commercially available in North America and Europe and replaces all previous large frame models.
“Coupling the industry’s most advanced SLA system with some of Somos’ most advanced SL resins gives today’s RP user a powerful tool that can help shorten product development times and even cost-effectively manufacture end-use parts,” says DSM Somos Product Development Manager Brian Bauman.
DSM Somos offers 15 high-performance Somos resins that currently run on all previous generations of SL equipment. Four new RP resins, and one novel resin for rapid manufacturing and prototyping (DMX-SLT 100) have been commercialized in recent months. Installation of these new products in the Viper Pro SLA system, supported by DSM Somos technical service representatives, has proceeded smoothly in all circumstances.
Introduced in March 2007, DMX-SL 100 is Somos’ newest SL resin innovation. With a stiffness similar to standard ABS-like resins but as much as four times the impact strength, DMX-SL parts are already being considered as a cost-effective alternative to Selective Laser Sintering (SLS), Vacuum Casting and injection molding technologies for many applications.
Paris-based engineering and RP company Groupe Erpro reports running DMX-SLT 100 successfully on the Viper Pro SLA machine. “The Viper Pro machine was developed with rapid manufacturing in mind and, to this extent, DMX is the perfect match-both for small detailed parts as well as large ones,” reports Groupe Erpro Managing Director Cyrille Vue. “The installation ran extremely well, allowing us to produce commercial parts within just a couple of days.”
Introduced in 2006, Somos ProtoGenT O-XT 18120 and 18420 ABS-like resins are advanced all-purpose materials suitable for a wide range of applications including master patterns for RTV molding and fit-and-function models. ProtoGen O-XT resins produce highly accurate parts resembling molded plastics, with higher heat deflection temperatures than standard ABS-like resins.
When David Yarnell, Director of Rapid Prototyping for Dynacept, recently added ProtoGen to their ViperT Pro(R) machine, Somos sent a technical service support team to assist them. “Changing resins in the Viper Pro can be quite an undertaking due to its unique design and large vat size (up to 59 x 29.5 x 19.7inch),” says Yarnell. “But those guys did a wonderful job and we were building test parts with the 18420 resin a whole day sooner than expected.”
“Best of all,” he continues, “ProtoGen’s faster photospeed and lower shrink is allowing our technicians to run the machine at maximum speed and power.” This enables Dynacept to deliver highly accurate parts with large frame capabilities.
An industry favorite since its introduction in 2001, Somos WaterShed 11120 is a semi-transparent ABS-like material that produces highly functional parts with excellent dimensional stability. It is ideal for many applications which require optically clear prototypes, including QuickcastT patterning, concept & functional modeling, and fluid flow analysis.
Express Pattern, a supplier of rapid prototyping and manufacturing services located in Vernon Hills, IL -and one of the first to receive a Viper Pro SLA system in 2006-reports that they’ve been running Somos resins successfully on the machine from day one. “We currently run Somos WaterShed(R) 11120 on the Viper Pro and have never had an issue,” says Owner of Express Pattern Dave Flynn. “The Viper Pro is a good part maker and, when paired with Somos resin, creates repeatable parts with excellent sidewall quality.”
“In the near future we will begin running Somos ProtoCastT AF 19120,” Flynn continues, “and we don’t anticipate any issues. We’re committed to making parts of the highest quality for our customers and Somos resins enable us to do just that.”
The Viper Pro SLA system from 3D Systems allows for the accurate and efficient production of large parts, or a large number of parts. When coupled with high-performance DSM Somos resins, RP users are stretching the boundaries of stereolithography with terrific results. Companies interested in using the SL boundary expanding materials of DSM Somos in conjunction with Viper Pro equipment should consult their equipment representative.
For more information about using DSM Somos SL resins on the Viper Pro SLA system, contact Somos at: email@example.com