DoTX Control Solutions' 5-Axis slicer software for multi-axis printers is pushing the boundaries of what 3D printing can do. EIT Manufacturing will help them access both the markets and the financial means to move the company forward.
The issue with three-axis printers is that that models have to be printed in flat, horizontal layers. Most of the existing slicers accommodate those printers. As a result, you are facing trouble. For instance, if the overhang angle exceeds its limit, supports will have to be printed that you have to remove later on. This is a major problem in metal printing, for example. Our 5-Axis Slicer software can actually generate toolpaths for 3D printers that have five or more axes, allowing to print virtually any model without overhang. This unlocks exciting possibilities.
Jan Schuurmans, Director at DotX Control Solutions
The 5-Axis Slicer software enables the printing of complex shapes without any support structures. And printing on top of other objects is now an option. “You can basically print anything with our 5-Axis Slicer” affirms Jan Schuurmans. “What this means for industrial customers is yet to be seen, but so far, we have seen most interest from metal 3D printing. One of the applications is metal dye repair. The damaged dye is scanned first, and converted into what we call a base model. Then, the operator draws the print model in CAD. Both models, base and print model, are imported in our 5-Axis Slicer which then calculates the toolpath for the welding torch.”
The DotX Control Solutions team, Jan Schuurmans, Jelle Kalsbeek, and Pieter van Klaveren, all have a background in control systems from TU Delft. “For our customers, we analyse where problems or challenges lie. We usually model the process or product first and can then find out how to set up the control system algorithms,” says Jan Schuurmans. “We then convert our algorithms into software.”
The wind turbine controller is another of their developments. The control software contains algorithms that reduce manufacturing costs and maximise electricity production. It is applied to wind turbines all over the world.
There are many good reasons to take DotX Control Solutions into our start-up portfolio. The company is printing in directions where more strength is needed to create objects that are stronger and lighter than existing production methods. In addition, they are able to adjust the slicer to customer needs. This customer orientation will let them scale their business.
Wolfgang Kniejski, Senior Business Creation Manager of EIT Manufacturing