Saturday, May 18, 2024

UltiMaker Launches Factor 4 Industrial-Grade 3D Printer

NEW YORK, NY, USA and GELDERMALSEN, The Netherlands, May 13, 2024 – UltiMaker, a global leader in 3D printing, announces the release of the UltiMaker Factor 4 industrial-grade 3D printer, designed to take manufacturing to new levels of efficiency and reliability. Factor 4 is an end-to-end 3D printing solution for light industrial applications.

The UltiMaker Factor 4 3D printer is engineered for the development and production of process-critical tools and components. With support for engineering materials, direct drive dual extrusion, onboard print quality reporting, temperature-controlled build volume, and other innovative features, it delivers high levels of predictability and minimal variance. Built on over a decade of dedication to openness and accessibility, the machine will support one of the widest material portfolios on the market for a variety of applications, including end use parts, functional prototyping, manufacturing tools, and small batch manufacturing of auxiliary components and spares.

Factor 4 offers a temperature-controlled build volume of 330 x 240 x 300 mm and uniform bed heating, ensuring consistent performance across the entire build plate. Designed for manufacturing and industrial sectors, it launches with a new high-temperature print core that allows engineers to print up to 340°C, enabling a broader range of high-performance, temperature-resistant, and durable materials, such as the new UltiMaker PPS CF, a high-temperature composite material. The machine efficiently uses the heated bed and actively controlled chamber airflow to manage the build volume temperature up to 70°C, ensuring optimal material-specific processing conditions and consistent part quality wherever the 3D printer is located.

Thoroughly tested to achieve over 95% print completion success and dimensional accuracy within ± 0.2 mm or ± 0.2% of the feature nominal length,[1] Factor 4 is designed to deliver consistent results across multiple machines—optimal for producing validated parts for distributed manufacturing. The printer’s versatility, reliability, and ease of use make it ideal for industries looking to optimize their production workflows and accelerate development. The latest print profiles for Factor 4, available on UltiMaker Cura 5.7.1, enable engineering materials, such as PET-CF and Nylon, to be printed with productivity levels similar to Tough PLA and PETG, effectively doubling print speed when compared to the UltiMaker S series.[2]

Michiel Alting von Geusau, CEO at UltiMaker, said: “Our commitment to customers goes beyond providing just a 3D printer; we offer a full 3D printing ecosystem, including hardware, software, materials, and support. With our comprehensive support, we help customers navigate through the complexities of 3D printing and identify opportunities. There is untapped potential in the light industrial market, and we believe that Factor 4 will enable customers to further explore the application possibilities in this space. With its efficiency and versatility, Factor 4 promises a quick return on investment, allowing businesses to capitalize on the benefits of 3D printing.”

Key features of UltiMaker Factor 4:

Industrial-Grade Performance

Constructed from robust steel, aluminum, and glass, Factor 4 is built for the factory floor. The printer features a triple-insulated build volume, closed loop and direct drive dual extrusion, automatic inductive bed leveling, and a PEI-coated flexible build plate, ensuring consistent production output, even on complex and challenging designs. These features combined with the all-new H-bridge gantry and a rigid all metal frame allow for high-speed movement and accuracy.

Automatic Material Handling and Storage

The integrated, low moisture material handling system allows engineers to reliably manage their print jobs. The material station is climate controlled, with humidity levels kept below 15%, and holds up to six spools of filaments in their prime condition. It features an automatic material change capability, which seamlessly switches between spools, eliminating downtime and ensuring uninterrupted printing, for those printing a single part that may require several days or multiple spools.

Expanded Material Diversity

The printer expands the range of high performance, industrial-grade materials, enabling production of structural integrity verified parts, from flexible materials to high-temperature composites, such as the UltiMaker PPS CF. UltiMaker PPS CF is a semi-crystalline thermoplastic material, reinforced with carbon fiber. The material has a temperature resistance greater than 230°C and is flame retardant. It provides a high-performing alternative to steel or aluminum for less-demanding parts, enabling users to unlock new industrial applications.

Seamless Workflow Integration

The UltiMaker Cura 5.7.1 release has new print profiles for Factor 4, customized and fine-tuned for optimal print quality and performance. With automatic recognition of UltiMaker materials and print cores in Cura, Factor 4 offers a smooth 3D printing experience. The printer is also compatible with major CAD software.

Powerful Onboard Print Process Reporting

The machine has a 7” capacitive touch screen and a suite of sensors in the print head, build volume, and automated material loading system that monitors real-time data on printer and material performance and delivers in-depth reporting after every print job, ensuring easy part validation and quality control.

Modular System for Simplified Maintenance

The printer offers a modular design that allows for easy repairs and maintenance, minimizing downtime and maximizing productivity.

Andrea Gasperini, Product Manager, B2B Solutions, at UltiMaker, stated: “With Factor 4, we are introducing a reliable industrial-grade solution that provides a solid long-term investment. Our focus remains on releasing products that can meet current needs and adapt and improve over time. Factor 4 delivers the reliability that UltiMaker products are known for, while also being able to seamlessly integrate alongside other industrial machinery and production processes.”

Materials that will be available for the Factor 4 at launch include the new UltiMaker PPS CF, other UltiMaker-branded materials, such as PLA, Tough PLA, nylon, PETG, PET CF, and PVA, and validated materials from BASF Forward AM, Kimya, Polymaker, LEHVOSS, Jabil, and more. Factor 4 will be compatible with materials on the UltiMaker Marketplace, with 250 pre-tuned print profiles. Factor 4 supports 2.85 mm filament.

The printer comes equipped with an integrated HEPA filter and a large red STOP button, ensuring safer 3D printing anywhere in factory or office environments.

Availability

The Factor 4 is expected to begin shipping in May 2024. Reach out to a certified UltiMaker partner to find a Factor 4 showroom near you.

For more information on the UltiMaker Factor 4, visit ultimaker.com/factor-4/.

About UltiMaker

UltiMaker is a global leader in 3D printing, focused on shaping the future of manufacturing, product development, and education. With a wide range of cutting-edge 3D printing solutions, including the popular S and Method series, one of the widest portfolios of 3D printing materials on the market, and leading 3D printing software platforms–Cura and Digital Factory, UltiMaker is paving the way for innovation across industries.

UltiMaker also offers the MakerBot sub-brand and Sketch series for educators and students, providing one of the most comprehensive 3D printing ecosystems for classroom learning and advancing education.

With a focus on reliability, precision, and innovation, UltiMaker is empowering customers to push the boundaries of what’s possible.

Learn more at www.ultimaker.com.

Nitin Patil
Nitin Patil
Editor and Director of Content, DailyCADCAM.com. Nitin completed his Master's in Mass Communication & Journalism and having 13 years of work experience as an editor, content writer with renowned international technical magazines and media companies. He is associated with CAD,CAM industry since 2008.
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