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Xact Metal has announced a relatively inexpensive, compact 3D printer for printing metals and alloys using selective laser sintering technology.
The Xact Metal startup was formed quite recently, at the beginning of this year, but is already ready to present its first product - a "budget" industrial-grade 3D printer capable of working with metal powders. Affordability is a relative concept, but the XM200 is priced at $ 120,000, making it perhaps the most inexpensive printer in its class.
The team consists of experienced professionals: the CEO is Juan Gomez, a 25-year-old manager who previously worked for General Electric, Chief Engineer Matt Woods has moved to the company from SpaceX, and the scientific adviser is the professor of mechanical engineering at the University of Pennsylvania Tim Simpson. It was this university, together with the investment company Ben Franklin Technology Partners, that provided all the necessary technical and financial support for such a rapid development.
The device is capable of sintering powders from stainless steel, and, in the future, from maraging steel, nickel, titanium and aluminum alloys into products up to 127x127x125 mm in size. Sintering is carried out by a 250 W fiber laser system with a patented high-speed positioning mechanism that provides a beam incidence at every point perpendicular to the surface and a scanning speed of up to 1.5 m / s. The dimensions of the device are rather modest, only 610x610x1295 mm.
“The XM200 is designed with consumers in mind. The large work area provides the flexibility you need to print a variety of products. The system is as easy to use as possible, with intuitive software and visualization of the user interface. The compact size allows you to save floor space by installing multiple units in tight spaces, ”says Matt Woods.
Although the system itself is already complete, production has not yet started.