Electronic Alchemy, an American 3D printer manufacturer has developed a 3D printer called “eForge” capable of printing both electronics and mechanical materials. It is designed for makers, students, and professionals and can be used in space also.
The printer’s primary elements include a moveable, heated platform bed (front and center) the extruder block and the LCD touch screen.
The device uses up to 8 independently controlled extruders simultaneously, printing composite polymer materials with different properties. eForge 3D printer is intended to print and manufacture electronic sensors. Yes, fully functional electronic devices come out of this printer.
That means it can manufacture pressure sensors, vibration sensors, optical sensors, temperature sensors and plenty of other sensors exactly how you need them. It also prints standard filaments like ABS and PLA with precision. But there is more, as the eForge has 8 extruders and 8 hotends, so you can print with up to 8 different materials.
The company works together with NASA since 2016. The first prototype of the printer was delivered to NASA, which is also one of the project’s sponsors, in June this year. This industrial-sized FDM (fused deposition modeling) printer, designed to work in space, can on demand new proprietary filaments that were developed from research sponsored by NASA.
This easy-to-use tool can allow astronauts to create the items they need on-demand, including mission-critical devices and components such as sensors.
It is the only 3D printer capable of printing fully-functional electronics. Each of the hotends can work up to temperatures of 265° C, so it is prepared for almost any material on the market, while the bed temperature can warm up to 120° C. The eForge’s build volume is 10.75″ x 7.85″ x 11.8″, XYZ resolution: Down to 20 Microns, and the print speed is around 80 mm³ /s.