Wematter upgrades its thermal-control software in its fleet of Gravity machines through over-the-air updates.
Since Wematter’s founding in 2014, the company has striven to make global production smarter by delivering accessible SLS solutions. One of the company’s main goals for its Gravity print system is to output high performing 3D printed components. To achieve this goal, the founding team, consisting of material scientists and engineers, have focused heavily on thermal design when designing machines. This focus has yielded great results. One of the unique selling points of Wematter Gravity is in its high-density SLS prints. These prints have more isotropic properties thanks to the 3D printer’s thermal design.
Data collection through machine learning, qualified research, and know-how
After years of data collection, machine learning using the collected datasets, and creating advanced algorithms, the company issued a major software and hardware update to its machines in 2020.
Creating a more stable fusion process
The update consists of improved parameters developed during testing, as well as several software improvements. The updates strengthen previously performed work and lower the temperature deviations both at the surface of the powder bed and throughout the entire building chamber. The upgrades are free of charge, and are part of Wematter’s unique business model, which includes renting machines to clients. This way, the machines get better as they are adjusted and serviced during and between rentals, rather than the traditional business model of selling a fixed product which then degrades over time.
Wematter has built all SLS Gravity machines from spring 2020 onward with new hardware. This leads to improvements in the thermal properties of the fusion process. The new hardware can achieve a more accurate reading during printing thanks to an improved sensor array. This improvement has reduced print deviations by 400%. It also provides a much narrower temperature window. These performance updates allow the machines to handle other, more difficult materials.
“The goal for the thermal design, the sensor array redesign, and the new software updates is to narrow down deviations in temperature as much as possible. These improvements create a balanced and stable environment during the fusion, also known as the sintering process. This is a requirement for some new materials we are currently researching,” says founder and CEO Robert Kniola.
As a result, the Gravity system can process several advanced materials. Different grades of PP (polypropylene) or fiber-reinforced polyamides (PA), to mention a few examples. Going forward, Wematter is investigating more high-performance materials, such as PEKK (Polyether Ketone Ketone), and PEEK (Polyether Ether Ketone).
Wematter manufactures advanced office-sized selective laser sintering 3D printers. The company exists to accelerate the move towards additive manufacturing by lowering barriers to entry. Its innovative 3D-printing SLS technology lets companies quickly prototype ideas, which increases overall design and engineering efficiency.
Wematter’s Nordic roots suffuse the company’s creative cycle. The team focuses on balancing user experience, ease of use, sustainability, and performance in all of its activities. The resulting quality and reliability are testaments to not just a client focus but to corporate responsibility in the face of a changing environment and industrial landscape.
Wematter attracts top customers like Siemens, Volvo, and Husqvarna. The company was founded by design engineers working with FDM SLA and FDM 3D printers, injection molding, and CNC-milling. Since its inception in 2014, Wematter has delivered 3D printers and 3D-printed components to car manufacturers, hospitals, and aerospace clients.