Tri-D Dynamics is bringing metal additive manufacturing to the mass production scale through identification of scalable applications.
Area of Research: Manufacturing
Location: San Francisco
Additive manufacturing has been limited in widespread adoption due to its initial push to be used as a do-all, be-all fabrication technology. Tri-D Dynamics is a company changing that in the field of metal additive manufacturing by identifying scalable applications in which their technology is the best solution for. The team is advancing a novel technique they have been developing, termed Cold Metal Fusion (CMF). CMF is a powder-based, solid-state, metal additive manufacturing process where geometries can be created without melting of the material. Because of this, the process features unique advantages including depositing material at high speed, fabricating dissimilar materials on top of each other, and adding metal to a number of substrate types without damaging or altering them. Tri-D Dynamics is exploring new workflows that allow for lower costs, quicker manufacturing, and more optimal product functionality.
Tri-D Dynamics launched after the team worked on advanced forms of metal 3D printing with NASA. As residents at the Autodesk Technology Center in San Francisco, Tri-D Dynamics was able to take their idea and transform it into reality. After the team designed the CMF printer, they learned fabrication and assembly best practices for the machine from the technology center’s workshop specialists. They completed a prototype with all of the necessary valves, plumbing, and integrated electrical functionality to enable remote operation. After months of speaking with potential users to find the most optimal and scalable applications, the team believes they have identified their first use case. They are now focusing on embedding sensors and cables into the walls of metal parts to capture critical data from tools that operate in harsh environments, and thus require a protective barrier for those electronics to function. By using Cold Metal Fusion to augment parts, Tri-D Dynamics can bring higher digital functionality and “smart products” to a number of industries, helping to build a world where the digital and physical seamlessly meet to create an optimized, dynamic environment.
Tri-D Dynamics is opening up the possibility for metal 3D printing to become a viable manufacturing process, marking a significant step in the field. They see a future where machines don't limit creativity in design but rather enable enhanced functionalities in a myriad of products.
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