Xact Metal announced the XM300G metal 3D printer series.
Xact Metal has been developing lower cost metal 3D printing solutions for several years, and their offerings have continually been improving in power and performance.
The company’s emergence attempted to fill a niche created by the traditional metal 3D printer manufacturers, which offered hugely expensive — but very capable — equipment. While terrific machines, they were effectively unaffordable by many organizations, including research units, institutions and smaller businesses. Xact Metal’s low cost solutions opened the door for LPBF metal 3D printing for many of these operations.
The latest entry in the Xact Metal portfolio is the new XM300G, which adds to the innovations of prior models from the company.
The most notable feature of the XM300G is that it can use multiple lasers. This is a feature that typically is found only on high-end LPBF offerings from the traditional 3D printer manufacturers, and at great expense.
The idea of having multiple lasers is to either increase build speed and/or increase build volume.
Typical LPBF equipment uses a galvanometric mirror at the top of the build chamber to bounce powerful laser beams down onto the powder bed. However, as the build volume increases, the angle of that reflected beam becomes so oblique that it affects the shape of the meltpool. This is why some LPBF machines are extremely tall, but it’s also a reason why multiple lasers are used: each laser can take on a portion of the build volume.
The XM300G can be configured with one, two or four lasers, with either 400W or 700W fiber lasers available. These work within the 300 x 300 x 350 mm build volume, which is somewhat small as compared to the “big guys” with their multi-laser LPBF systems.
The reason for this is that the XM300G’s lasers have “100% overlapping print zones”. This means that all lasers are working within the same build volume at all times. In other words, a print could be two or four times faster if using dual or quad laser configurations because there are “more hands” doing the work.
Xact Metal has set the MSRP for the XM300G at about US$200K, which is higher than their original equipment’s lower price. That’s understandable, because the XM300G is a far more powerful device as it includes features found only on much more expensive systems.
For those seeking a low cost, but fast running metal 3D printer with moderate print volume, the XM300G could be a good choice. Look for its release in Q3 of this 2023.
Via Xact Metal