Friday, 5 August 2016

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Rapid prototyping is a group of techniques used to quickly fabricate a scale model of a physical part or assembly using three-dimensional computer aided design (CAD) data. Construction of the part or assembly is usually done using 3D printing or "additive layer manufacturing" technology

Rapid Prototyping refers to the production of models and prototypes from 3D computer-aided design (CAD) data using Additive Manufacturing (AM), more commonly referred to as 3D Printing.

"For many years, “Rapid Prototyping” was the preferred, overall name for AM technologies. This however was simply a reflection of the times - these technologies then were better suited to the creation of prototypes. After huge developments in the field, it is now possible to produce exceptional end-use products as well, and we use the term “Rapid Prototyping” to refer solely to the creation of models and prototypes".

The famous Magics software by Materialise is the ideal solution for driving efficiency throughout your entire Rapid Prototyping process. From importing data to preparing platforms, RP professionals rely on the extensive tools in Magics for all of their software needs.

Complementary to Magics, our revolutionary Streamics™ product provides you with a user-friendly server based system which centralizes all of your customer project data, and which makes it easy to collaborate between your team-members and communicate with your customers. Streamics™ can also help to automate repetitive or complex part operations (such as support generation, file fixing, and part labeling). Plus, there is a perfect and complete integration between Streamics™ and Magics.
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3D printers usually make smaller parts.

Most 3D printers are limited to making parts that will fit roughly in a cube 8 inches on a side. On the other hand, rapid prototyping machines provide a build chamber at least 10 inches on a side, and some have build chambers approaching 3 x 3 x 2 feet and much larger. Being smaller on the outside means there’s less room to build parts inside. A smaller build envelope also means that it’s not possible to make as many parts at the same time. That’s lower throughput efficiency than an RP machine, but not usually a concern for the applications 3D printers are intended for.
3d Printing costs less

3D printers are cheaper to maintain and feed.

You can expect to spend several hundreds to a few thousand dollars per year to maintain a 3D printer and keep it fed with materials, but it costs several tens of thousands of dollars each year to maintain a rapid prototyping system. Simply replacing a laser in a stereolithography machine can cost $20,000, and filling a big vat with photopolymer can easily cost more than $50,000

Less Material choices for 3d Printers.

Although the list of materials is growing each month, 3D printers don’t provide the same range of materials as RP machines. Some classes of materials such as ceramics and metals are not available at all. But it’s possible to make adequately functional parts for many applications, and the materials available are certainly appropriate for concept modeling, a frequent use of 3D printers. At the hobbyist level some thermoplastic extrusion machines are actually capable of using a wide range of plastics and material costs are a lot lower. 

3d Printers are less complex, and easier to use

Usually 3d printers require much less or even no training at all in contrast to rapid prototyping machines. It’s possible to be making parts pretty much right out of the box with some professional-level technologies. And the simplicity comes at the price of flexibility. Unlike Rapid Prototyping machines, you may not be able to adjust or select many build parameters, or change them on the fly. Also, be forewarned that at the low-cost hobbyist level the equipment is not very “Plug & Play” yet. Some of what you save by buying one of these very low cost machines is likely to be offset by the extra time required to get the equipment running reliably and learning to use it.

Design iteratively

No matter what you design, you almost never achieve a flawless product right out of the gate. Rigorous testing, evaluation and refinement are the best means to assess what works and what doesn’t. Rapid prototyping with 3D printing provides the flexibility required to make this crucial trial and error process possible for physical products.

Reduce scrap and rework

In general, the later a problem is discovered, the more costly it will be to correct. Finding and fixing problems early in the design cycle is essential to preventing scrap, rework and retooling. Rapid prototyping with 3D printing allows industrial designers and engineers more revisions in less time, so they can test thoroughly while still reducing time to market.

Communicate ideas

Physical models convey ideas to collaborators, clients and marketers in ways computer models can’t. Rapid prototyping facilitates the clear, detailed feedback essential to product success, and lets designers quickly respond to input.

Test in the real world

Know exactly how your products will look and perform before investing in tooling. A wide range of 3D printing materials can produce tough functional prototypes for highly accurate performance testing, or realistic models that look and feel like your finished products. Photopolymers, thermoplastics, metals and composite materials provide a full spectrum of material properties, many of which withstand secondary processes like sealing, polishing, painting, metallization or electroplating.
- See more at: http://www.stratasys.com/solutions/rapid-prototyping#sthash.7NQCfwHS.dpuf

Design iteratively

No matter what you design, you almost never achieve a flawless product right out of the gate. Rigorous testing, evaluation and refinement are the best means to assess what works and what doesn’t. Rapid prototyping with 3D printing provides the flexibility required to make this crucial trial and error process possible for physical products.

Reduce scrap and rework

In general, the later a problem is discovered, the more costly it will be to correct. Finding and fixing problems early in the design cycle is essential to preventing scrap, rework and retooling. Rapid prototyping with 3D printing allows industrial designers and engineers more revisions in less time, so they can test thoroughly while still reducing time to market.

Communicate ideas

Physical models convey ideas to collaborators, clients and marketers in ways computer models can’t. Rapid prototyping facilitates the clear, detailed feedback essential to product success, and lets designers quickly respond to input.

Test in the real world

Know exactly how your products will look and perform before investing in tooling. A wide range of 3D printing materials can produce tough functional prototypes for highly accurate performance testing, or realistic models that look and feel like your finished products. Photopolymers, thermoplastics, metals and composite materials provide a full spectrum of material properties, many of which withstand secondary processes like sealing, polishing, painting, metallization or electroplating.
- See more at: http://www.stratasys.com/solutions/rapid-prototyping#sthash.7NQCfwHS.dpuf

Design iteratively

No matter what you design, you almost never achieve a flawless product right out of the gate. Rigorous testing, evaluation and refinement are the best means to assess what works and what doesn’t. Rapid prototyping with 3D printing provides the flexibility required to make this crucial trial and error process possible for physical products.

Reduce scrap and rework

In general, the later a problem is discovered, the more costly it will be to correct. Finding and fixing problems early in the design cycle is essential to preventing scrap, rework and retooling. Rapid prototyping with 3D printing allows industrial designers and engineers more revisions in less time, so they can test thoroughly while still reducing time to market.

Communicate ideas

Physical models convey ideas to collaborators, clients and marketers in ways computer models can’t. Rapid prototyping facilitates the clear, detailed feedback essential to product success, and lets designers quickly respond to input.

Test in the real world

Know exactly how your products will look and perform before investing in tooling. A wide range of 3D printing materials can produce tough functional prototypes for highly accurate performance testing, or realistic models that look and feel like your finished products. Photopolymers, thermoplastics, metals and composite materials provide a full spectrum of material properties, many of which withstand secondary processes like sealing, polishing, painting, metallization or electroplating.
- See more at: http://www.stratasys.com/solutions/rapid-prototyping#sthash.7NQCfwHS.dpuf