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SLA 3D Printing Dubai

The vision laid out by the strategy aims to develop Dubai’s housing to include 25% of the housing made through 3D construction by 2030

SLA 3D Printing Dubai

With the rapid expansion of the 3D printing technologies around the world and particularly in the MENA region, the availability of both household and specialized products is set to grow drastically. The UAE, with its 3D printing hubs based in Dubai and Abu Dhabi is geared up to become a major node in the development of 3D printing technologies, and as has become apparent over the last decade the expansion of the industry commercially also means an expansion of the technological possibilities of this technology. At Apex Research Laboratories we envision many ways in which such technologies can help you in your everyday life, but also help you bridge critical requirements.

3D printing in Dubai

In 2016 the vice-president, prime-minister and ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al Makhtoum inaugurated the Dubai 3D printing strategy which aimed to develop these technologies for the service of humanity. The vision laid out by the strategy aims to develop Dubai’s housing to include 25% of the housing made through 3D construction by 2030. This also means the large-scale development of 3D modelling as a necessary tool to develop sustainable notions of architecture in relation to 3D printing. Another major part of the vision for the strategy is to expand 3D printing in the medical industry considerably. This is on the back of a predicted growth of the 3D printing industry by 2025 to 1 billion dollars.  3D printing in the MENA region expanded during the first outbreak of the covid crisis, coming to the aid of people through the production of face shields. This clearly shows that 3D printing in this region and particularly in Dubai is an industry with growing robustness and the increasing ability to respond to crisis and to contribute to increased production at times of need. This is an industry, moreover, that grows in nuance and skill with increased production, with the construction-based industry associated with 3D printing clearly demonstrating a reduction in both labor cost and errors with increased production. This latter feature is particularly apparent in smaller scale 3D printing, with the printers getting fine-tuned to producing accurate forms with increased production of a particular type and form.

The industry is set to grow not only in scale, and in the number of products manufactured but also with the degree of accuracy and durability of the products. This has also been accompanied by an expansion in the types of materials that can be used to produce 3D forms, moving from the earlier dependance, for example, in the construction industry on concrete- based manufacturing, which is ecologically damaging, to the use different types of natural products like clay and mud and potentially even sand, a material that there is an abundance of in the MENA region and particularly around Dubai. This ability to fold in both untapped industries and materials shows the high ceiling for growth that 3D printing technologies demonstrate.

SLA 3D Printing

SLA 3D printing was one of the first kinds of additive manufacturing invented with the first patent for SLA technology patented by Charles Hull in 1986 and remains still one of the best ways to produce fine-grained if, at times, brittle products. The technology produces artifacts at small scales and is ideal for crafting items that require a highly fine grain without any structural errors. SLA printing uses resin-based substances which are ultra-violet light sensitive and thus are sculpted by the exposure to light, allowing for very clean cuts and well-defined boundaries to even very complex shapes. Upon exposure to light, these resin-based substances form polymerizing monomers. The shape is brought to light by layered curing ideally used in items such as jewellery, for example, allowing surprising suppleness and malleability with form.

Products made

Most popularly and as an ideal example, resin-based 3D printing is used to create characters for table-top games and allows for all the fine-grain details that other printer such as FDM printers do not allow. Details such as a character’s hair or musculature come to life via this form of printing. Similarly, SLA printing forms an ideal type to construct architectural models and prototypes due to the high definition provided to boundaries and edges without the product developing hairs or blobs in critical sections of the piece is often the problem with other types of 3D printing.

The models for architecture we have developed clearly shows the level of detail our products can reach and thus form an ideal opportunity for architectural students to save time and energy usually spent making three-dimensional models manually. Instead, resin-based printing allows these models to be developed piece-by-piece and assembled into an array of complexity. While our FDM printers can also be used to make products highly durable, SLA printers might be more beneficial for models that require a highly refined geometric structure. The primary disadvantage with SLA printers, of course, is the product’s brittleness, which implies that such printers are not valuable for designing equipment and tools. For more on this, please refer to our page on FDM printers. On the other hand, SLA printers are renowned for revolutionizing the dental field, with the earlier reliance on guesswork and estimation to produce accurate moulds being bypassed entirely by the degree of detail these printers can produce.

With the expansion of 3D architecture in Dubai scheduled to reach 25% of the housing market, this also creates a major opportunity for the development of alternate architectural models, since as has been demonstrated one of the key benefits of 3D print based architecture is that it can produce even in housing complexes, variations in architectural form for every house constructed, with simple changes to the overall structure and materials. This means that the future call for architects is one that makes creativity and alternate modeling not just a dream but a necessity, and SLA based 3D models allow the detail, accuracy and grain that allow the most innovative ideas to develop into this growing market.

Advantages of SLA Printing

Disadvantages of SLA Printing

SLA printing allows the designer to create highly imaginative forms. It allows for considerable freedom with creative interpretation. At Apex Research Laboratories, we attempt to enable this creative process and give designers the impetus to produce their ideas clearly and with all the details they envisioned intact. We hope to not merely furnish a service but to collaborate with you so your vision is not compromised at any level.

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