TechWeb

Survey Copter Flies to Stratasys for 3D Printing of UAV Systems

May 22, 2013 (10:05 PM EDT)
URL: http://www.techweb.com/show-press-release/enUK201305233104/survey-copter-flies-to-stratasys-for-3d-printing-of-uav-systems.html

MINNEAPOLIS and REHOVOT, Israel, May 23, 2013 /PRNewswire/ --

Dual 3D print line-up increases responsiveness and reduces costs for aerospace firm's Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV)

Stratasys and Survey Copter to exhibit at forthcoming Paris Air Show (17th - 23rd June, Paris, France)

Stratasys Ltd. (NASDAQ:SSYS), a leading manufacturer of 3D printers and production systems for prototyping and manufacturing, has announced that remote control systems manufacturer, Survey Copter, is successfully using its 3D printing technology to produce prototype and short-run component parts for mini-unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) systems, also known as drones.

     (Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130523/614242-a )
     (Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130523/614242-b )
     (Photo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20130523/614242-c )

France-based Survey Copter, a subsidiary of the European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company N.V. (EADS), specializes in the design, production and integration of complete remote systems for surveillance photography and video service applications for UAVs and other airborne craft, as well as for sea and overland vehicles.

Having previously outsourced its prototyping requirements, Survey Copter turned to Stratasys for an in-house solution that could reduce costs and ensure greater efficiency and autonomy, granting the company the means to rapidly produce very small quantities within 24 hours. Via Stratasys' French distributor, CADvision, Survey Copter subsequently installed two 3D printing solutions - a Stratasys Dimension Elite 3D Printer and Stratasys Fortus 400mc 3D Production System, which offers nine production-grade engineering thermoplastics using Stratasys' patented Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM) technology.

"Effectively meeting our 3D printing needs can only be achieved via machines that are capable of producing quality parts with high reliability," explains Jean Marc Masenelli, managing director, Survey Copter. "Stratasys' reputation for delivering 3D printers that meet these criteria head-on made them the logical company to partner with."

Spearheading Survey Copter's prototyping and short-run manufacturing activities, the Stratasys Fortus 400mc and Dimension Elite 3D Printers are deployed in the production of component parts for the company's mini-UAV systems, including both helicopter and fixed-wing variants weighing up to 30kg and 10kg respectively. Ranging from a few millimetres up to parts measuring 40cm x 10cm, these components comprise mechanical structures for optical turrets, structural elements of aircraft, battery compartment housing, supporting structure, as well as scale models.

High Performance Materials Engineered for Aerospace

For Masenelli, the ability to utilise different materials according to specific application needs offers key advantages for producing durable 3D printed parts. Such materials include FDM thermoplastics polycarbonate, ABS and high performance ULTEM 9085 which boasts superior strength and lightweight properties, as well as other desirable characteristics including FST (flame, smoke and toxicity)  rating. This safety standard, particularly valued within the aerospace and transportation industries, ensures a material won't promote a fire, release harmful smoke, or emit toxic fumes.

"That we are able to print production-grade materials such as high-performance FDM thermoplastics like ULTEM, which is qualified for aerospace applications, is a definite plus for our operations," he explains.

"The Stratasys 3D Printer can produce parts with complex shapes - for us a highly sought after requirement and a principle differentiator that sets Stratasys' proposition apart from that of other providers," he adds. "This specific capability enables us to produce parts of wide-ranging dimensions and hollow forms, as well as full honeycomb structures."

Featuring two material bays for maximum uninterrupted production, the Stratasys Fortus 400mc 3D Production System produces accurate, durable, repeatable 3D parts with superior throughput. It is available in two configurations: the basic system which builds parts as large as 355 x 254 x 254 mm, and an optionally upgraded system which builds parts as large as 406 x 355 x 406 mm. With four layer thicknesses to choose from, users can fine-tune their desired balance between FDM's finest possible feature detail and the fastest build.

The Stratasys Dimension Elite 3D Printer features the finest resolution of any Stratasys Design Series Performance 3D Printers and produces nine colors of real ABSplus thermoplastic. When the finest dimension resolution of 0.178 mm is not required, the Dimension Elite allows users to accelerate printing with a layer thickness of 0.33 mm.

Stratasys/CADvision will be exhibiting at the forthcoming Paris Air Show (17th - 23rd June, Paris, France) on stand 3-E54.

About Survey Copter/Cassidian

Survey Copter is a specialist in the design and manufacture of turn key remote systems working in critical and severe environments/conditions (sea, air, over ground). These systems involve Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV), robots, tanks, complex turret systems as well as data transmission and target tracking devices. The company is a subsidiary of Cassidian, which is the defense and security division of the EADS group and a major provider of global security solutions, lead system integration and aerial, land, naval and joint systems.

About Stratasys Ltd.

Stratasys Ltd. (Nasdaq: SSYS) is the corporate entity formed in 2012 by the merger of 3D printing companies Stratasys Inc. and Objet Ltd., based in Minneapolis, Minn. and Rehovot, Israel. We manufacture 3D printers and materials for prototyping and production. Our patented FDM® and PolyJet® processes produce prototypes and manufactured goods directly from 3D CAD files or other 3D content. Systems include affordable desktop 3D printers for idea development, a range of systems for prototyping, and large production systems for direct digital manufacturing. Since June 2012, our range of over 130 3D printing materials is the widest in the industry and includes in excess of 120 proprietary inkjet-based photopolymer materials and 10 proprietary FDM-based thermoplastic materials. We also manufacture Solidscape 3D Printers and operate the RedEye On Demand digital-manufacturing service. Stratasys has more than 1100 employees, holds more than 500 granted or pending additive manufacturing patents globally, and has received more than 20 awards for its technology and leadership. Online at: http://www.stratasys.com or http://blog.stratasys.com.

Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward-Looking Statements

Statements regarding Stratasys' beliefs, intentions and expectations, including without limitation statements regarding the development and performance of our products, are forward-looking statements (within the meaning of the United States federal securities laws). The statements involve risks and uncertainties, both known and unknown, that may cause actual results to differ materially from those projected.  Actual results may differ materially due to a number of factors, including the risk and uncertainty that the businesses of the two companies may not be integrated successfully; the risk that the merger may involve unexpected costs or unexpected liabilities; the risk that synergies from the merger may not be fully realized or may take longer to realize than expected; the risk that management's focus on and disruptions arising from the merger make it more difficult to maintain relationships with customers, employees, or suppliers.  Stratasys' ability to achieve the results presented in any forward-looking statement will depend on numerous factors, including its ability to penetrate the 3D printing market; its ability to achieve the growth rates experienced in preceding quarters; its ability to introduce, produce and market both existing and new consumable materials, and the market acceptance of these materials; the impact of competitive products and pricing; its timely development of new products and materials and market acceptance of those products and materials; the success of Stratasys' recent R&D initiative to expand the DDM capabilities of its core FDM technology; and the success of Stratasys' RedEye On DemandTM and other paid parts services. This list is intended to identify only certain of the principal factors that could cause actual results to differ.  These and other applicable factors are discussed in this presentation and in Stratasys' Annual Report on Form 20-F for the year ended December 31, 2012, as well as other filings that Stratasys, Inc. has made with the SEC and that Stratasys Ltd. has made and will make with the SEC in the future.  Any forward-looking statements included in this presentation are as of the date they are given, and Stratasys is not obligated to update them if its views later change, or to reflect the occurrence of unanticipated events, except as may be required by law.  These forward-looking statements should not be relied upon as representing Stratasys' views as of any date subsequent to the date they are given.

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SOURCE Stratasys Ltd.