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3D Printer Can Rapidly Prototype PCBs, Company Says
The DragonFly 2020 is reported to be “the world’s first 3D Printer for professional multilayer PCBs
(Photo Credit: Yoram Reshef).
DragonFly 2020 is designed to produce professional, multilayer PCBs in a matter of hours
SANTA CLARA, Calif.—The capability to rapidly produce functional, multilayer PCB prototypes using 3D printing is new to the printed electronics design and manufacturing industry. So it’s not surprising that Nano Dimension would cause quite a stir at the Printed Electronics USA 2015 conference last November, when the company revealed what it claims is “the world’s first desktop-sized 3D printer designed specifically for the production of professional, multilayer printed circuit boards (PCBs).” Nano Dimension’s DragonFly 2020 3D Printer, targeted for commercial availability during the second half of 2016, reportedly will allow users to build functional, multilayer circuit board prototypes in-house in a matter of hours.
Subtractive manufacturing, the current standard for manufacturing PCBs, is a multi-stage, labor- and material-intensive process that is costly and time consuming for electronics designers requiring prototypes. Nano Dimension’s 3D printer, however, can print a complete multilayer PCB, including all interconnections between layers, using its inkjet printer and highly conductive nano-inks, according to a press release from the company. Sophisticated proprietary software accepts industry standard Gerber design files and manages the precise print process. The DragonFly 2020 3D Printer also gives users the option of testing on-the-fly, testing a range of designs, and exploring new circuit geometries.
The DragonFly 2020 3D Printer is a three-axis inkjet printer that is said to reduce PCB design and test cycles from months or weeks to days, minimize costs, and allow electronics designers to inexpensively evaluate design alternatives and creative ideas. By allowing sensitive design information to stay in house, the DragonFly 2020 safeguards the security of intellectual property, the company says.
“For designers and engineers looking for ultra-rapid prototyping of PCBs, our 3D printer is a significant leap forward,” said Simon Fried, chief marketing officer at Nano Dimension, in the release. “The DragonFly 3D Printer eliminates the frustration they face when they reach the prototyping and testing stage. Moving their work from design to a prototype at an off-site printing facility might take weeks for the PCB to be ordered, produced, and shipped. If further iterations are needed, it’s back to the prototyping house for another cycle. In today’s competitive electronics markets, unforeseeable and costly delays during PCB development can significantly slow time-to-market. That’s the development risk and bottleneck that we’re eliminating with the DragonFly 2020.”
Nano Dimension Ltd., founded in 2012, focuses on the development of advanced 3D printed electronics systems. The company’s products also include advanced nanotechnology-based conductive and dielectric inks.
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