HP Jet Fusion 3D Printer Could Signal New Stage in Manufacturing

HP announced in 2014 that they were going to move into the 3D printing arena, and just this month have revealed their Jet Fusion 3D Printers for which they are now taking orders. This is by no means a consumer product (the price tag for one model is $132,000), but it could mark a new phase in the evolution of 3D Printing.

Two main problems in 3D Printing that HP has set out to solve are those of speed of printing, and quality of the produced problems, and they claim to have made progress in both areas. They claim these printers can produce “functional parts” at up to 10 times the speed of current printers.

Here are a couple of videos that HP has put out that provide an overview of what their printers can do.

Regardless of the claims of how superior this new line of 3D printers are compared to others, HP getting into the 3D printing field to this extent shows that the investment levels are high, and most likely will spur greater competition in the field.

It seems to me that there is much more potential for HP in 3D printing than with traditional 2D printers. Printing on paper has its limits, and is getting less necessary these days. Anyway, I added a new world to my vocabulary today: voxel — it’s the 3D equivalent of a pixel. In one of the videos it explains that individual voxels will be able to be printed its own properties like color, material and flexibility.

More information is here: https://www.technologyreview.com/s/601472/can-hp-make-3-d-printing-into-a-mass-manufacturing-technique/

  • Curbina

    As all technical matters, 3D printing will evolve as fast as the market lets It. In the movie Tomorrowland there’s a scene in which a building is being 3D printed by autonomous machines working in tandem. I think we are far from It but It will get there at some point.

  • Omega Z

    3-D printers will never replace mass production.

    However, it will have many a niche uses and custom products. Even mass produced products need prototype development that can be quite costly. 3-D will save both time and money. Also, due to the current cost of building prototype products, many changes or products never make it to market at all. The cost out ways the risk.

    There’s also a lot of things people may think of as mass produced, but aren’t. They produce a lot of turbines, but they are of a large variety and constant change thus they are all made up of limited production runs.

    An area where 3-D printers may become very important is growing transplant body parts. Should they be able to print the callagen scaffolding for stem cell implantations to grow.

    ->”Collagen is the most abundant protein in the human body and is the substance that holds the whole body together. It is found in the bones, muscles, skin and tendons, where it forms a scaffold to provide strength and structure.”

    • pixelblot

      Never is quite a strong word. I can easily see the process being part of an assembly line when we get more robust advances.