SolutionAbout PFT IDProPFT IDPro is a technology department incorporated into the Lycée Polyvalent Aragon Picasso Se
About PFT IDPro
PFT IDPro is a technology department incorporated into the Lycée Polyvalent Aragon Picasso Secondary School to help students and teachers develop advanced manufacturing skills. In addition to its educational mission, the center works closely with local companies to explore how new technologies such as additive manufacturing can help develop mechatronic products and systems.
With the increasing popularity of mechatronics products, many companies are eager to explore the field and turn to IDPro's expertise. As a school, IDPro must ensure that students enter the workforce with the skills they need. In addition to its educational mission, IDPro works closely with local companies to provide technical guidance and a variety of fabricated parts for the development of electromechanical systems, from test parts to custom mold tooling. To help address these challenges, IDPro turned to the Desktop Metal Studio System.
As an educational tool, Studio System has played an important role for IDPro. While the center already has a variety of 3D printers, including laser-based systems for producing metal parts, none use a melt extrusion-based printing method like the Studio System.
Unlike other metal 3D printing systems that rely on metal powders, the Studio System uses binding rods - metal powders held together by a polymer binder. The rods are heated and extruded layer by layer, similar to the Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF) method commonly used in plastic printers.
By investing in Studio System, IDPro ensures that students gain the broadest possible hands-on experience with metal 3D printing techniques, which can then be applied to the workplace. For IDPro's corporate partners, the system fills a different field. The tool-free nature of the Studio System allows companies to produce functional parts in just a few days, rather than the weeks or even months of traditional manufacturing.
The Studio System also prints parts at significantly lower cost and with fewer logistical challenges than the center's laser printers, such as handling potentially hazardous metal powders or requiring machining to remove build plate supports. The combination of low cost and high accessibility opens the door to new manufacturing environments where printing many parts in metal can be justified. The system also allows for more design iterations. Rather than producing one or two prototypes, companies can quickly produce a variety of parts, each with a slightly different design, and test each to produce a final part that meets their exact needs.
why Why choose Desktop Metal ？
IDPro decided to invest in Studio System for a number of factors. While the system contributes to the center's goal of training students in various aspects of advanced manufacturing technology, the safety of the Studio System is also an important factor. The Studio System's office-friendly design, using no loose metal powders or lasers, also eliminates the need for special facilities or breathing PPE. The system's safety and ease of use make the system ideal for school settings and allow students to quickly get their hands on the metal parts.
Parts Fabrication and Comparison
① Gears: Gears are some common mechanical parts, and there are thousands of options when choosing gears. Even with thousands of options available, there are still many situations that require or benefit from custom gear. These custom gears are difficult to produce in small batches with traditional manufacturing methods and require advanced machining methods. The desktop metal studio system makes it easy to print these gears because it just builds them layer by layer. By printing, IDPRO can also combine other features into gears that are traditionally produced separately and then fastened or welded to off-the-shelf gears.
②Lever Arm: This lever arm is a replacement part for the alarm system. To print the lever arm, students simply upload the part design to the printer, press print, and the part is ready for sintering in less than three hours. Printing lever arms also enables students to produce parts at significantly lower cost and lead time than traditional manufacturing methods.
③Shifter: This shifter was designed by IDPro students for the Écurie Piston Sport Auto (EPSA) racing team. Printing the part allowed students to incorporate cutouts inside the part that could not be created by any manufacturing method other than 3D printing, helping to reduce weight, a key consideration for racing teams, and then quickly manufacture it without the need for expensive tooling.