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  • StrataSys 3D Printing and Production Systems Case Studies

    Dimension Case Study Paradise Valley High School

    Production floor trends: justifying additive manufacturing through jigs & fixtures

    According to three owners of Stratasys Fortus machines, one-year profit gains ranged from $60,000 to $230,000 from just a few fixture-related applications.

    There is an often-overlooked additive manufacturing (AM) application with potentially huge financial returns. Savings can be so large that they can justify the purchase of an AM (or 3D printing) system in far less time than the typical three- to fiveyear payback period the financial officer will demand. The application is jig and fixture making — which also includes gauges, organizational aids and other manufacturing devices. AM produces these tools by adding material in an automated, layer-by-layer process rather than removing material with a cutter or forming it in a mold.

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    Dimension Case Study Paradise Valley High School

    Medical Device Firm Creates Complex Production Parts

    "There are so many benefits to using FDM parts, but it has to become a mindset." — Dave Scott, Acist Medical Systems

    Acist (Advanced Contrast Imaging System Technology) is a medical-device company that specializes in developing contrast injection systems in the fields of cardiology and radiology. Acist’s devices infuse dye into the vascular system, letting physicians visualize anatomies. Acist uses Stratasys’ FDM (Fused Deposition Modeling) technology to maximize efficiency beyond rapid prototyping alone.

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    Dimension Case Study Paradise Valley High School

    CREST Engineering Program Emphasizes Precision Design Skills

    The Dimension 3D Printer gives them a chance to touch and feel the designs they've created. Not only do students possess a better understanding of the entire process, but they also enjoy an immense sense of pride in their accomplishments. — Phil Howardell, Paradise Valley High School

    Phil Howardell loves to watch his young engineers solve problems. As the lead instructor in charge of Paradise Valley High School's Center for Research in Engineering, Science and Technology (CREST), Howardell takes pride in giving kids a solid foundation for careers in engineering. For many CREST students, Howardell's Introduction to Engineering Design course is their first exposure to basic engineering principals and practices. It's easy for him to visualize the wheels turning inside his students' heads…and occasionally grinding to a halt.

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    Fortus Case Study Hyundai

    FDM Dashboard Prototype Holds Tight Tolerances; Improves Design

    Dimensional accuracy and dimensional stability were critical for design verification. FDM gave us both. - Tae Sun Byun, Hyundai Mobis

    Korean-based Hyundai Mobis makes original and aftermarket equipment for the automotive industry, including Hyundai and Kia. In its drive to be best in class and a global top 10 supplier, it depends on prototyping for design verification, airflow evaluation, and functional testing. The company uses a Fortus FDM (fused deposition modeling) system for components such as instrument panels, air ducts, gear-frame bodies, front-end modules, and stabilizer-bar assemblies.

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    Fortus Case Study Instrumentation Labs

    Move from Virtual Prototyping to Rapid Prototyping
    Cuts Manufacturing Costs $7.2 Million

    FDM helped us achieve a manufacturing cost reduction of 40%. That's 10% more than the traditional approach would have offered. — Scott Notaro, Instrumentation Laboratory

    Instrumentation Laboratory is a worldwide manufacturer of in vitro diagnostic instruments, related reagents and controls for use primarily in hospitals and independent clinical laboratories. The company's product lines include critical care systems, hemostasis systems and information management systems.

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    Fortus Case Study, Joe Gibs Racing

    FDM Carbon Monoxide Filter Takes the Heat

    We are now very comfortable producing quality production parts using our Fortus system. — Brian Levy, design engineer, Joe Gibbs Racing

    When it comes to safety, the Joe Gibbs Racing (JGR) design engineers don't leave anything to chance. Thanks to a new SR-100 soluble support material used with Fused Deposition Modeling® (FDM) from Stratasys, they can now create complex carbon monoxide filter housings for their cars using polycarbonate (PC) material, which has a higher temperature rating than the previous material used.

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    Fortus Case Study, Polaris

    FDM Technology Helps Reduce Tooling Costs
    By $60,000 Per Part

    FDM Technology Helps Reduce Tooling Costs By $60,000 Per Part – Randy Larson, Polaris

    Polaris snowmobiles have achieved an unparalleled record of performance, winning 60% of the stock class titles during the 2008 World Snowmobile Championships. Polaris has built this amazing record through painstaking attention to detail. The attitude of company engineers is "Every part must be perfect."

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    Fortus Case Study, Rocket Crafters

    Hybrid Rocket Engines Use Additive Manufacturing to Combine the Advantages of Solid and Liquid Propellants

    Additive manufacturing technology has been the key to producing fuel grains with higher consistency at a lower cost and shorter leadtimes than was possible in the past. — Ron Jones, President and Chief Technology Officer, Rocket Crafters Inc.

    Today, solid rockets dominate most military applications because they take up relatively little space, can be launched on a moment's notice and offer a high thrust-to-weight ratio. Meanwhile, liquid bipropellant rockets enjoy the lion's share of orbital launch vehicle and spacecraft propulsion system use because they are more fuel efficient, offer a higher specific impulse and can be throttled and restarted when needed.

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    Fortus Case Study, UCF

    FDM Helps UCF Win Best New Design

    The frame had to be strong, yet it's so complex it would have cost a fortune to machine. FDM gave us the ability to economically rapid manufacture just one. - Christopher Sprague

    Each year the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) challenges students to design and produce underwater vehicles that operate without any human control. University of Central Florida (UCF) accepted the challenge and entered the ninth annual Autonomous Underwater Vehicle Competition. Leveraging the advantages of fused deposition modeling (FDM®), the university's robotics laboratory manufactured "Scout" and walked away with the honor of best new design.

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    SSYS Case Study, Pedal Brain

    FDM Helps Get Cycling Computer to Market Faster at a Lower Cost

    FDM lets our creative side run wild by trying as many different ideas as we want without worrying about the cost and time of making prototypes. — Matt Bauer, President, Pedal Brain

    Pedal Brain produces an iPhone accessory that logs a wide range of data for competitive cyclists and also uploads it onto the web where it can be viewed by coaches and teammates. Pedal Brain goes far beyond simpler applications that rely only on the phone's GPS for data by using the ANT+ technology to collect data on speed, distance, heart rate, cadence and power from ultra-low power wireless sensors. The Pedal Brain application runs on the iPod to show how the cyclist is performing in realtime and the cyclist can log into the Pedal Brain site later to get more detailed analysis. Pedal Brain offers an integrated platform for coaches who can track the cyclist's progress and plan his or her workouts. Teammates and fans can view the position of racers from a computer or iPhone.h

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    SSYS Case Study, Silgan Plastics

    FDM Models Reduce Time to Market for New Spoonable Zero-Calorie Sweetener

    FDM models play a critical role in our design process by allowing customers to evaluate a 3-Dimensional model to take the guesswork out of the design process. — Stephen Kocis, Creative Design Services manager, Silgan Plastics

    Silgan Plastics is a leader in the design and manufacture of plastic bottles, jars, tubes, caps and fitments for the food, health care, personal care and household markets. Silgan Plastics is an operating company of Silgan Holdings, a leading manufacturer of consumer goods packaging products with annual net sales of $3.1 billion in 2010.

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    SSYS Case Study, Thogus Products

    61-Year-Old Company Re-Invents Itself With FDM

    We save in excess of $150,000 per year with FDM. I can't imagine not having this technology in a manufacturing setting. It is as critical to our business as e-mail. — Matt Hlavin, President, Thogus Products

    Established as Master Mold & Die in 1950 by Jack Thompson, Thogus Products (Thogus) is a 61-year-old manufacturing company foundationally rooted in injection molding. In 1997, 56% of sales came from automotive clients. A decade later, feeling the pressure of a poor economy and recognizing the threat of limited diversification, Thogus decided to search for new sources of revenue.

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    SSYS Case Study, Urbee

    Stratasys 3D Printers Build Urbee, First Prototype Car to Have Entire Body Created with an Additive Process

    FDM technology made it easy and efficient to make design changes along the way. — Jim Kor, KOR EcoLogic

    "We should want to own and drive a clean, energy-efficient car," said Jim Kor, president and senior designer for the Winnipeg-based engineering group of KOR EcoLogic. His passion for the environment led him to design the principles of sustainability into a new car code-named Urbee and created with the 3D printing capabilities of Stratasys. The two-passenger Urbee, which stands for Urban electric with ethanol as backup, was designed to use the least energy possible. It is capable of reaching more than 200 mpg on the highway and 100 mpg in the city. And now, it is the first prototype car ever to have its entire body printed with an additive process.

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