What is SLA/SLS Rapid prototyping?

EBI CNC machining parts Manufacturer and trader. Supplying cnc shaft parts,custom cnc parst, 3d printing, Injection Molding.

Rapid prototyping is divided into SLA and SLS by material.

SLA is a process that uses the principle of Stereolithography, also known as selective curing of photosensitive resin. It is the earliest rapid prototyping technology.

The resin bath is filled with a liquid photosensitive resin which cures rapidly under the irradiation of an ultraviolet laser beam. At the beginning of the forming process, the lifting table is at the height of a section thickness below the liquid level, and the focused laser beam is scanned along the liquid surface according to the cross-sectional profile under the control of the computer to make the scanned area The resin is cured to obtain a resin sheet of the cross-sectional profile. Then, the workbench is lowered by a layer of the sheet, and the cured resin sheet is covered with a new layer of liquid resin for the second layer of laser scanning curing, and the newly cured layer is firmly bonded to the front layer. Repeat this until the entire product is formed. Finally, cleaning, support, secondary curing, and surface cleaning are performed.

The photosensitive resin selective curing rapid prototyping technology is suitable for the production of small and medium-sized workpieces, and can directly obtain products of resin or similar engineering plastics. SLA rapid prototyping has good surface quality, high system resolution and high molding precision.

SLS is processed in a similar manner to SLA technology, but replaces the liquid photopolymer with a powdered material and acts on the powder material at a certain scanning speed and energy.

During the forming process, the laser parameters, as well as the characteristics of the powder and the sintering atmosphere, are important factors influencing the quality of the sintering. SLS rapid prototyping can produce the hardest hand, and can use a variety of raw materials, such as most engineering plastics, wax, metal, ceramics, etc., the construction speed of the parts is high, no need to post-correct the parts, no design and construction support.

So, what is the difference between SLA and SLS?

There are some common denominators, for example, both use a laser to trace out and build individual layers. For SLA a liquid resin is cured, whereas in SLS powder is selectively fused together.

Comparing the techniques isn't easy as they both have pros and cons. If we were limited to a single sentence summary, it would have to be that SLS is generally tougher and lower in cost, whilst SLA produces parts with tighter dimensional tolerances and have a better surface finish more akin to injection moulded part.

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