SLM Solutions announced the NXG XII 600E, an even bigger version of the company’s massive metal 3D printer.
The NXG XII 600 was announced two years ago to the surprise of the industry. The massive machine includes not two, not four, but TWELVE 1kW lasers for incredible print throughput. The large build volume permits building of huge metal parts not possible on most other LPBF metal 3D printers.
Now they’ve somehow expanded this concept to an even bigger build volume with the NXG XII 600E.
The new machine has a build volume of 600 x 600 x 1500 mm, whereas the original NXG XII 600 is “only” 600 x 600 x 600 mm. This seems to be accomplished by extending the Z-axis upwards.
It makes sense to extend the build volume in that way because it means the lasers won’t have to increase their strike angle, which can cause challenges in the consistency of the prints: as the angle increases, the laser dot becomes more oval and energy per area unit varies.
However, that won’t be the case on the 600E as the angle of the laser dots should actually decrease with the added height. I suspect print quality could be better on the 600E.
Why make such a big machine? It turns out that SLM Solutions had a customer request to create a machine with the larger build volume for a specific, undescribed project.
But having built the 600E for one client, it is now available for others to acquire as a normal product. In fact, SLM Solutions said they will offer an upgrade path for existing 600 clients who wish to have the bigger build volume.
There are several other interesting features on the 600E, including:
- An external cooldown system that could allow more machine throughput — with only one hour between jobs
- An “open architecture” that allows operators to tweak print parameters as required for optimum results
- Support-free printing with the Free Float feature that dramatically reduces post processing efforts
- Automatic part quality documentation at job conclusion
Of course, the main feature is still the twelve lasers that work in parallel to dramatically increase job speed. Other LPBF machines typically max out at only four lasers, and I’m aware of only one other system that has more than four, but their nine is still less than twelve.
SLM Solutions said the 600E is able to fuse up to 1,000 cubic centimeters per hour, which is quite incredible. That’s 24l of metal per day, or in terms of stainless steel, around 180kg of metal printed object(s) per day.
With the increased interest in metal additive manufacturing by certain industries, especially aerospace, the 600E is certain to get a long look by manufacturers. SLM Solutions has already sold several 600s, and it’s probable they’ll sell multiple 600Es — if they haven’t already done so.
Via SLM Solutions