Ultimaker Looks Up with Cloud and Material Announcements

By on February 21st, 2019 in materials, Software

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 Ultimaker S5s ready for action [Image: Ultimaker]
Ultimaker S5s ready for action [Image: Ultimaker]

Two Cura-centric announcements from Ultimaker today mark ongoing progress for the company.

First, Ultimaker Cloud.

Set to launch next month with Cura 4.0, the new “future-ready platform” marks what Ultimaker CEO Jos Burger describes as “a crucial next step in our journey to speed up the world’s transition to local digital manufacturing.”

Cloud-based software is becoming ever more popular — and ever more powerful. Ultimaker Cloud is set to continue the company on its track to streamline and simplify workflow. The company notes that the first features of Ultimaker Cloud to be launched will be:

  • Backups: Keep your Ultimaker Cura settings in the cloud and conveniently retrieve them for use anywhere, on any computer

  • Marketplace: Get exclusive access to print profiles configured by material experts from leading brands, choose the ideal material for your application, and instantly get optimized settings in Ultimaker Cura for the best results

  • Marketplace ratings: Share your opinions and experiences with plugins in the Marketplace

  • Remote printing: Send print jobs to network-enabled Ultimaker printers from anywhere and stay informed of print progress

Ultimaker Cloud and Cura 4.0 are set for release on March 19. We were impressed with the beta version of Cura 4.0, which has already been available to preview the new features.

The second announcement today is an addition of three new companies’ material print profiles.

In the autumn, Ultimaker introduced print profiles for materials from several producers in the newly formed Ultimaker Material Alliance Program.

“This alliance will continue to give more professionals access to high-end materials for all kinds of use cases and industries and will give each Ultimaker S5 in the field an extra upgrade,” Burger said upon the September launch of the materials alliance.

Several big names were in on the initial introductions of print profiles, all set to continue to open Ultimaker to more capabilities.

“We are open since the beginning, and focusing on applications. For a specific purpose, you need the right material for each or it will not work,” Ultimaker Co-Founder and CTO Siert Wijnia told me a few months ago. “Now materials from DSM, Owens Corning, Clariant, BASF, and DuPont are all tuned for our S5. We created this software tool internally, and it looked good enough that we took it external. We are all for taking away as many hurdles as possible.”

Companies Ultimaker is working with have noted their optimism about the relationship — and that optimism is now expanding with the addition of three new print profiles.

Available for download now in Ultimaker Cura, the new profiles include:

  • Essentium

    • Ultrafuse Z PCTG

  • eSUN

    • PETG

    • ePA-CF

    • HIPS

  • Polymaker

    • PolyMide PA6-CF

    • PolyMide CoPA

    • PolyCast

These new profiles ensure that users have immediate access to accurate parameters for advanced materials. Essentium’s material is interesting here in that it was developed itself through a partnership with BASF; now with both BASF and Essentium represented in these profiles, we can see growth in the overall collaborative environment.

Collaboration, an open mindset, and a simplified workflow: today’s introductions are all strongly in line with the messaging Ultimaker has been underscoring for some time. It’s always heartening to see a 3D printing company live up to its personal vision and actively deliver. Ultimaker Cloud will be an interesting one to keep an eye on — and it seems like only a matter of time before we’ll see more materials introductions through this thriving young alliance format.

Via Ultimaker

By Sarah Goehrke

Sarah Goehrke is a Special Correspondent for Fabbaloo, via a partnership with Additive Integrity LLC. Focused on the 3D printing industry since 2014, she strives to bring grounded and on-the-ground insights to the 3D printing industry. Sarah served as Fabbaloo's Managing Editor from 2018-2021 and remains active in the industry through Women in 3D Printing and other work.