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Desktop Metal: Metal 3D Printing for Manufacturers

According to Forbes, there’s a new kid on the block – and it’s 3D printing in metal!  Desktop Metal, which is a startup based in Massachusetts, has just announced “the release of two new metal 3D printing systems aimed at engineering and manufacturing firms.”

“First, in September, the company’s studio system will hit the market – enabling engineers to create small parts and to make prototypes out of metal quickly.  Then in 2018, the company will release its full production system, which will enable manufacturers to quickly print metal parts.”

Desktop Metal CEO and Co-Founder Ric Fulop explains “part of the motivation for starting [the] company in 2015 was out of frustration…the current state of metal 3D printing [was] slow and expensive…it seemed like the only way to improve the performance of metal printers was to make them more expensive.  I felt like that was the wrong direction.”  Desktop Metal’s other Co-Founder, Ely Sachs, “literally coined the term ‘3D printing’ during the technology’s nascent years.”

Fulop and Sachs “highlighted a number of advantages they think [Desktop Metal] has over what’s currently at market.  For one, their process doesn’t involve any hazardous materials, nor does it require any laborious cutting processes.  That means that their systems can be housed without the need for more expensive facilities…another advantage…is that they use a wider variety of metals – and house them in easily swappable cartridges.”  Desktop Metal’s 3D printing process also took its inspiration from the world of plastic 3D printing with their “bound metal deposition” extrusion process.

Other advantages of Desktop Metal are speed of the 3D printing process and price.  “A full studio system, including printer and furnace, will cost $120,000.  The production system will cost $360,000, with furnaces available for $60,000 apiece.  That’s 10 times less than what’s on the market.”

“The company has raised nearly $100 million in venture funding to date, with contributions from BMW i Ventures, GE Ventures, Kleiner Perkins Caulfield & Byers, 3D printing company Stratasys, and more.”

Image and Quotes Courtesy of Forbes

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