Shanghai Union Technology Corp. (UnionTech; Shanghai) launched its Pilot commercial series at the recent TCT show in Birmingham, UK. The product line targets additive manufacturers seeking high-quality equipment with surface aesthetics, a range of applications and ease of use at an affordable price, said the company.
UnionTech stereolithography (SL) equipment has evolved in a highly competitive environment consisting of direct technology competitors as well as significant cost pressure from a well-entrenched CNC machining industry.
Since a 2016 expansion into international markets, UnionTech (with offices in St. Charles, IL, and Frankfurt, Germany) has identified a large segment of 3D-printing users that would benefit from the versatile capabilities of stereolithography but are limited in their choices because of cost. This unmet need in the marketplace has led UnionTech to develop the Pilot series.
The Pilot 250 features a 250 x 250 x 250 mm platform, while the Pilot 450 series offers a 450 x 450 x 400 mm build platform. The Pilot series features open design for materials and build preparation software and has all the “industrial strength” capabilities of UnionTech’s RSPro production series. Typical features include scan speeds up to 12 m/s, layer thicknesses as low as 0.05 mm and accuracy of +/- 0.1% over part length. Many customers successfully use DSM Somos resins with this equipment, said the company.
While the SL process is capable of directly producing prototypes across a broad spectrum of toughness, temperature resistance, and strength and stiffness properties for fit and function evaluations, there are broader ranges of SL applications that include prototype tooling for injection molding and patterns for investment casting.