08-APR-17 - 110.76 - ¥/$ Up
    About   Health   Business   Technology   Drones   Entertainment   Gaijin Journal   JPN on RakutenFM   JAPAN Trade News

New 3D Printer Set to Reshape Market
By Brad Frischkorn

Still in its infancy, 3D printers are fast beginning to look like some of the artwork they produce. For newbie 3D printer company Apparatus, it could be the wave of the future.

Simplicity and elegance perhaps best define Apparatus' new Arc desktop machine, which looks a bit like a triangular ice chest without the sides, and definitely unlike any other 3D printer. Company co-founder and engineer Jon Buford brought a pre-production model to the Global Sources Electronics Show held in Hong Kong in mid-April.

"We started with end-use considerations--what problems users have, what inconveniences they face, and what are the core features that they really use," Mr. Buford says.

The end result was a 150mm, 2kg device that seems a good deal smaller and lighter than conventional 3D printers of comparable output. The Arc also features a full servo motor control feedback system that can 'sense' when problems arise, such as if the filament is not in place, if an object is blocking the production mechanism, or if the user forgets to install the print surface.

"Calibration, such as getting the printer bed at the right height and level, has been one of the 'black arts' of the industry for a long time, and takes practice to master," he says. "We hope to eliminate that and thereby make the machine much easier to use."

The Arc's design also allows for a longer than average printing bed, and can operate on laptop computer-level power, affording a measure of portability if absolutely necessary. Its compact size and weight means easy storage, while the semi-open source operating system should allow for a measure of customization.

The trend lines for the 3D printer industry are indeed bullish. Wohlers Associates estimates that the global industry grew to over $5 billion in 2015, a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of almost 26%. In 2014, the industry grew 34.9%, its highest rate in 17 years.

Sales of industrial-use 3D printers have been soaring, but desktop 3D printer growth also remains strong, with nearly 300,000 machines sold since the start of 2015.

"While not quite yet resonating with general consumers, desktop 3D printers remain an important gateway technology for the evolution of the 3D printing industry," says Chris Connery, VP for global analysis at market research company CONTEXT. "Today's young engineers, students, and hobbyists need to become exposed to the concepts necessary to allow them to properly design products for an additive manufacturing environment and low cost, entry level personal 3D printers allow for this learning to take place more rapidly."

Apparatus is targeting professionals and educators as its primary customer base. The Arc is in its final design stage, with mass production slated for July. The company is busy lining up its first buyers now and will sell directly to most areas of the world. For Japan, however, the firm is looking for a local partner while contemplating crowd funding possibilities.

"With all its technological capabilities, we think Japan will be huge market," says Mr. Buford, who is a veteran tech entrepreneur, and has helped to co-found other ventures such as BootHK, Hardware Massive, and StartupsHK. A U.S. expat, he has been living in Hong Kong for the last 12 years.

Read more:

http://www.globalsources.com

http://www.3ders.org/articles/20160405-wohlers-report-2016-reveals-1-billion-growth-in-3d-printing-industry.html

https://www.contextworld.com/news

https://twitter.com/jonbuford https://wohlersassociates.com


Apparatus 3D printer prototype

“We started with end-use considerations--what problems users have, what inconveniences they face, and what are the core features that they really use." -- Mark Buford

Related Links

Apparatus





GAIJIN Journal and News Front Page

94

MOBILITY TECH
The Smartwatch Goes ‘Mod’

“The GPS module is currently the most popular single sensor. People seem to need the most help in finding out where they are.” -- Arvin Lagaso



BUSINESS
Virtual Keyboards: Strokes of Genius

“Laser keyboards are a good solution for so-called ‘fat finger’ typists who can appreciate a little extra key area. -- Micheal Wu



HEALTH
Scaling up the Indoor Garden

“People are coming to realize the many benefits of growing key food items at home: no pesticides or toxins, better freshness, taste, and nutrition. Modern growing systems are getting more economical, and more fashionable, too.” -- Tracy Guo



HEALTH
'Oshibori' on the Rise: Reinventing the Hand Towel

“A mildly alluring, maybe even mysteriously pleasant aroma, can be a powerful memory stimulant.” -- Naoki Ootsuka



LED TECH
New LEDs Lead Convenient Camping Wave

“There are still some campers out there who prefer to ‘rough it,' but convenience is addictive, and people want to take their gadgets with them.” -- Harrison Smiddy



INDUSTRIAL USE
Miniaturization is Big Biz for Micro Tubes

“If you’ve ever found yourself in a hospital stuck with a catheter, or even receiving a routine vaccine, chances are good that our parts are inside the tip of the instrument." -- Kazuki Kuwahara



 
08-APR-17 - 110.76 - ¥/$ Up
    About   Health   Business   Technology   Drones   Entertainment   Gaijin Journal   JPN on RakutenFM   JAPAN Trade News
The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2016 - Japan Press Network KK. All websites are published in Japan and are solely subject to Japanese law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. JPN, AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Japan Press Network, Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Japan Press Network KK on any Web page published or hosted by Japan Press Network KK. Privacy Statement All images and articles appearing on Japan Press Network KK have been edited or digitally altered in some way. Any requests to remove copyright material will be acted upon in a timely and appropriate manner. Any attempt to extort money from Japan Press Network KK will be ignored and reported to Australian, American, Japanese, Russian and Global Law Enforcement Agencies as a potential case of financial fraud involving the use of a telephonic carriage device or postal service.