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Graphic analysis of the difference between various light-curing 3D printers

How to choose an industrial 3d printer

3D printing is becoming more and more popular. When it comes to light-curing 3D printing, most people may only know the molding method of sla, but they also think that this kind of printer should cost tens of thousands of yuan. When the name of light-curing is heard, it will be cured by light The meaning of molding.

Most of the consumables used for photocuring are photosensitive resins, which are a mixture of photoinitiators, monomer polymers and prepolymers. This material can be cured under specific wavelength UV light focusing.

Now photosensitive resin materials are generally used in SLA, DLP, and LCD models. The model printed with photosensitive resin material has a smoother surface, high printing accuracy and high molding quality.

Next, let’s talk about the difference between the three types of light-curing SLA, DLP, and LCD machines.

The core of every light curing technology is a solution to the problem of light source, from the SLA of laser scanning, to the DLP of digital projection, to the latest LCD printing technology. We can understand the characteristics of light curing technology. Light curing technology, in addition to SLA laser scanning and DLP digital projection, has formed a new technology that uses LCD as a light source. The simplest understanding of LCD printing technology is that the light source of DLP technology is replaced by LCD.

Thirty years ago, when 3D printing came out, it started with light curing technology SLA (laser scanning) stereolithography technology. So light curing is the boss of 3D printing technology. LCD mask technology has been developed since 2013. If you are interested, you can find the earliest makers used ordinary computer LCD monitors to remove the backlight board, and add 405 LED lamp beads as backlight, and try to print uv resin.

Next, I will give you a detailed introduction to the forming principles of the three machines.

What is LCD?

LCD is the abbreviation of Liquid Crystal Display. As the name implies, it is a liquid crystal projector. It is a three-color liquid crystal panel of red, green and blue, which is magnified by a lens and transmitted through a mirror. The light source in the LCD projector is a metal halide lamp or UHP (cold light source).

What is DLP?

DLP is the abbreviation of “Digital Light Processing”, that is, digital light processing, that is, the image signal must be digitally processed before the light is projected. The principle is to pass the cold light source emitted by the UHP bulb through the condensing lens, homogenize the light by Rod (light rod), and pass the processed light through a color wheel, dividing the light into RGB three, (or RGBW Wait for more colors), and then project the color on the DMD chip by the lens, and finally reflect the image on the projection screen through the projection lens.

What is SLA?

SLA is the abbreviation of “Stereo Lithography Apparatus”. The laser beam outlines the shape of the first layer of the object on the surface of the liquid photosensitive resin, and then the production platform is lowered a certain distance, and then the cured layer is immersed in the liquid resin. This is repeated until the printing is formed. Finally, after the prototype is taken out of the resin, it is finally cured, and then polished, electroplated, painted or colored to obtain the required product.

In addition to light curing technology, the core problem of light source, there are many supporting problems in software, automation, application and industry. Another core issue, light curing resin, is also a core technology.

From the perspective of the principle of light curing rapid prototyping and the materials it uses, light curing rapid prototyping has the following characteristics:

LCD advantages:

  1. High accuracy: It is easy to reach a plane accuracy of 100 microns, which is better than the first generation of SLA technology and is comparable to the current desktop DLP technology
  2. Low price: Compared with the SLA and DLP of the previous generation technology, this cost performance is extremely outstanding.
    Simple structure: Because there is no laser galvanometer or projection module, the structure is simple, easy to assemble and repair.
  3. Universal resin: Due to the 405nm backlight, all DLP resins or most light-curing resins are theoretically compatible. Only be careful with some SLA special resins, which may not have good compatibility, mainly because of underexposure.
  4. Fast printing speed: print multiple parts at the same time without sacrificing speed, because this is the same as DLP technology, it is a surface forming light source.
  5. It is small in size, light in weight, and very convenient to carry. It is the mainstream product in the projector market, so it is gradually popularizing in home entertainment and small shopping malls at lower prices.

Advantages of DLP projector:

  1. From a technical point of view, DLP projectors mainly have three characteristics: high native contrast, miniaturization of the machine, and closed optical path;
  2. The DMD chip adopts a mechanical working method, the movement of the lens is more controllable, and the higher native contrast is expected;
  3. The DLP projector adopts the reflective principle, which is more thoughtful for eye protection;
  4. The DMD chip uses a semiconductor structure, and the lens is not easy to change too much when operating at high temperatures, so the DLP projector uses a closed optical path to reduce the probability of dust entering;

Advantages of SLA processing:

  1. High processing precision, which can reach 0.1mm;
  2. It can manufacture parts with complex shapes (such as hollow parts) and particularly delicate (such as jewelry, handicrafts, etc.). It is suitable for making mobile phones, radios, walkie-talkies, mice and other fine parts and toys, as well as high-tech electronics industry casings, home appliances casings or Models, motorcycles, auto parts or models, medical equipment, etc.;
  3. The manufacturing speed of the parts is fast, and the layered scanning of 0.1-0.15mm can be carried out;
  4. The surface quality is good, can make very fine detail thin wall structure, and the post-processing is easy;
  5. The processing is in place, and many details that cannot be processed by CNC can be processed, thereby reducing the workload of post-processing.

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