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3D Systems premieres its revolutionary Figure 4 platform at IDS

Sat. 22. April 2017


In dentistry, the use of 3-D printers is an area of continual growth. With its recent acquisition of NextDent, 3D Systems now has the materials necessary to transform the 3-D printing industry.

The International Dental Show (IDS) in Cologne in Germany saw the company debut its Figure 4 digital production platform, which is designed to mass-produce customisable dental parts with maximal efficiency in time, money and material. The next-generation additive manufacturing platform allows printing of 40 crowns in fewer than 15 minutes—less time than it takes many milling solutions to produce one crown.

3D Systems has more than 30 years of experience in 3-D printing. Now, the company’s hardware and NextDent’s biocompatible materials have been combined in Figure 4, the industry’s first scalable, fully integrated additive manufacturing platform. According to 3D Systems, this platform for digital dentistry delivers better, faster and more predictable patient treatments. It is able to achieve improvements of up to ten times in total cost of operations, through significantly reduced fabrication times and substantial reduction in material waste, compared with conventional production of a range of indications.

Using NextDent’s 12 distinctly different clinical materials, it can produce at up to ten times the speed of conventional methods and many indications, including partial and complete dentures, surgical guides, crowns, bridges and orthodontic splints. Furthermore, Figure 4 is capable of manufacturing parts in hybrid materials that offer toughness, durability, biocompatibility, high-temperature deflection and elastomeric properties.

The ultra-fast additive manufacturing technology is offered in discrete modules. The platform therefore allows customers to tailor configurations, from single-print engine machines to fully automated, high-volume production systems with 16 or more print engines, automated material delivery and integrated post-processing, and to select materials for specific applications. The modular printer platform enables smaller laboratories to cost-effectively produce thousands of dental products per year and provides fully automated solutions for larger laboratories producing more than one million dental indications per year. According to 3D Systems, with all of these capabilities, the Figure 4 platform offers unparalleled versatility, productivity and effectiveness.

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