EnvisionTEC CEO Al Siblani explains why the SLCOM 1, a machine that does selective lamination composite object manufacturing and is in beta testing, is an important development in 3D printing: “There’s absolutely no limitation in terms of geometry in terms of what kinds of composite parts you can build—unless it’s a closed volume. Besides any closed volume, the SLCOM 1 allows you to additively manufacture parts that are 24 inches wide, 30 inches long and 24 inches deep. So what really makes the SLCOM an interesting product is its ability to print very large parts that could be used in some luxury automobiles as finished goods. It could also be used in a production capacity in aerospace companies.” In part because of automation, SLCOM 1 promises to reduce to two or three days a manual manufacturing process that now takes about 13 days: making one GE90 engine blade in composites.
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