Stereolithography – SLA
Stereolithography (SLA) is an additive manufacturing technology that converts liquid materials into solid parts, layer-by-layer, using a light source to selectively cure each layer in a process called photopolymerization.
- Engineering: Helps engineers and product designers conceptualize, prototype, test, and manufacture final products. With material characteristics like tough, durable, flexible, or temperature resistant these resins are used to create functional parts from assemblies to injection molds, soft-touch surfaces, and consumer products.
- Dental: Allow dental labs and practices to create a range of personalized dental products in house. These parts are based on the patient’s scan intraoral, or CBCT scan, and designed for the treatment. Specific applications include orthodontic, diagnostic, and educational models as well as biocompatible parts like surgical and pilot drill guides.
- Jewelry: Prototyping and casting jewelry with intricate details. Standard modeling resins are recommended for prototyping to create an inexpensive “fitting ring” or “try-on” piece to create excitement and deliver peace of mind to clients before casting. Castable resin is designed for direct investment casting, allowing jewelers and casting houses to go straight from digital design to a 3D print.
- Model making and development: STL helps engineers and product designers quickly verify the look, feel, and function of a design. Mechanisms and assemblies can be tested and easily modified over the course of a few days, helping drastically reduce product development time and avoid costly tooling changes.
- Education: SLA has one of the most forgiving design specifications of all 3D printing technologies, which is adequately suited for educational use. Depending on part geometry, positive and negative surface features can be produced at 300 microns or less. Prototypes can be designed with the manufacturing process in mind, which allows for a seamless transition from prototype to traditional manufacturing, such as machining or injection molding.