A search of the USPTO database reveals a new trademark by Desktop Metal: “FLEXCERA”.
A trademark is an official registration for the use of a term or symbol for a product or service provided by the owning company. Typically companies create trademarks to prevent others from misleading clients to think they’re getting official products when they’re not.
Most companies own several trademarks, typically their logo and for a few brand names. Desktop Metal already owns these, among others:
- Bound Metal Deposition
- Single Pass Jetting
- Desktop Metal (obviously)
- Studio System
- Molten Modeling
- Live Parts
- Fab Flow
- Desktop Health
Readers may recognize some of the above as company products, processes and software tools. “Desktop Health”, however, is a relatively new trademark that just appeared a few weeks ago, coinciding with an announcement that the company is entering the healthcare market. They’re intending on providing personalized 3D prints of various items to optimally serve patients through the new Desktop Health business.
Only a few days ago these trademarks appeared on Desktop Metal’s list:
These have do not yet appear to have corresponding product announcements from the company, so it may be that the trademark registration provides us with a slightly early glimpse into Desktop Metal’s plans.
Based on the “crown” trademarks, it would seem that Desktop Metal is to enter the dental market with some type of process that would presumably make dental crowns in only 30 minutes.
That itself could be a breakthrough product, as most dental work occurs in a batch cycle where patients must return to the dentist after their appliance is made by a lab over the course of days. If the dental office could produce a usable crown in only 30 minutes, then that almost falls within the wait time a patient could endure. In other words, this could cut out the dental lab delay entirely.
But how will Desktop Metal (Desktop Health?) do this? Will they announce a new machine and materials to do so?
The Desktop Metal 3D printer portfolio includes industrial machines. Usually dental 3D printers use a resin process.
However, Desktop Metal has no resin equipment — or they didn’t, anyway, until they recently acquired EnvisionTEC and its entire, extensive portfolio. Including, yes, resin 3D printing equipment and dental expertise. This was all highlighted in the introduction of Desktop Health.
Then there’s “FLEXCERA”. What could this be? The trademark description says:
“Mark For: FLEXCERA™ trademark registration is intended to cover the categories of resin for use in 3D printing applications including medical applications, dental applications, artificial teeth, artificial gums, orthodontic application and vision-based applications.”
It’s going to be a line of materials, likely made from a mix of ceramic and flexible materials.
When will this be announced? It would seem imminent, as trademark registration usually occurs only days before public showing of the product.
Watch for something from Desktop Metal in coming days.