Axtra3D announced their new X1 series of 3D printers that use the company’s highly unusual HPS 3D printing process.
Previously we’ve learned a bit about HPS, which by the way is short for “Hybrid Photosynthesis”. The idea of this resin 3D printing process is to overcome the resolution challenges of laser systems and the size challenges of DLP/MSLA by simply combining the two into a single system.
Axtra3D explains HPS:
“This patented technology combines two different light sources – DLP and laser – to leverage the best of each without the tradeoffs of either. HPS brilliantly coalesces the energy from the two light sources, DLP and laser, creating a harmonized light engine that efficiently harnesses the power and competencies of the two sources.
HPS delivers the speed of DLP and LCD processes with the ultrafine resolution of SLA, all without familiar aliasing defects, anisotropy, or tiny build volumes. The large build area of Axtra3D’s HPS-powered systems produce isotropic parts with fine feature finish.”
The company revealed their work with HPS only a short time ago, but had not specified any equipment that made use of it. Of course, they were, and we’ve been waiting for an announcement. Now that announcement has occurred.
In addition to HPS, the company also has developed “TruLayer” technology. This tech relates to the resin tank used with HPS. The main feature is that the surface is chemically designed to not stick to resins, making print speeds quite rapid and maintaining tank membranes far longer. TruLayer also somehow allows very wide cross-sections to be printed, even with viscous resins. I’m quite interested in this technology and want to learn more about it.
Finally, the Axtra3D technology includes something called “Intelli-Cartridge”. This is said to be a “spill-proof” system for resin handling that both delivers AND receives material from the resin tank.
You might suspect that the Intelli-Cartridge system would be yet another proprietary material play, but in fact it turns out that the Intelli-Cartridge system can be used for both closed and open materials. This is quite revolutionary, as most 3D printer manufacturers tend to keep the “goodies” with their own proprietary materials.
Axtrad3D announced two systems that use HPS, TruLayer and Intelli-Cartridge: the Lumia X1 and Revox X1.
Specifications for the two devices were not yet released at the time of this writing, but Axtra3D said the Lumia X1 offers a print volume larger than “any 4K DLP” machine, while retaining high resolution.
The Revox X1 is similar in almost all respects to the Lumia X1, except that it doesn’t include the HPS light engine. This means the Revox X1 is available at a budget price. Why buy this machine? It does include the TruLayer technology, which speeds up printing, and does allow for a future upgrade to the HPS light engine.
The machines are now available for pre-order. Axtra3D did not indicate when they will ship the equipment, however.