WO1995015841A1 - Machine for making objects by selectively photopolymerising layered liquids or powders - Google Patents

Machine for making objects by selectively photopolymerising layered liquids or powders

Info

Publication number
WO1995015841A1
WO1995015841A1 PCT/FR1993/001218 FR9301218W WO9515841A1 WO 1995015841 A1 WO1995015841 A1 WO 1995015841A1 FR 9301218 W FR9301218 W FR 9301218W WO 9515841 A1 WO9515841 A1 WO 9515841A1
Authority
WO
Grant status
Application
Patent type
Prior art keywords
liquid
mask
active
device
machine
Prior art date
Application number
PCT/FR1993/001218
Other languages
French (fr)
Inventor
Lucas Goreta
Original Assignee
Finab Limited
Priority date (The priority date is an assumption and is not a legal conclusion. Google has not performed a legal analysis and makes no representation as to the accuracy of the date listed.)
Filing date
Publication date

Links

Classifications

    • GPHYSICS
    • G03PHOTOGRAPHY; CINEMATOGRAPHY; ELECTROGRAPHY; HOLOGRAPHY
    • G03FPHOTOMECHANICAL PRODUCTION OF TEXTURED OR PATTERNED SURFACES, e.g. FOR PRINTING, FOR PROCESSING OF SEMICONDUCTOR DEVICES; MATERIALS THEREFOR; ORIGINALS THEREFOR; APPARATUS SPECIALLY ADAPTED THEREFOR
    • G03F7/00Photomechanical, e.g. photolithographic, production of textured or patterned surfaces, e.g. printing surfaces; Materials therefor, e.g. comprising photoresists; Apparatus specially adapted therefor
    • G03F7/70Exposure apparatus for microlithography
    • G03F7/70216Systems for imaging mask onto workpiece
    • G03F7/70283Masks or their effects on the imaging process, e.g. Fourier masks, greyscale masks, holographic masks, phase shift masks, phasemasks, lenticular masks, multiple masks, tilted masks, tandem masks
    • G03F7/70291Addressable masks
    • BPERFORMING OPERATIONS; TRANSPORTING
    • B29WORKING OF PLASTICS; WORKING OF SUBSTANCES IN A PLASTIC STATE, IN GENERAL
    • B29CSHAPING OR JOINING OF PLASTICS; SHAPING OF MATERIAL IN A PLASTIC STATE, NOT OTHERWISE PROVIDED FOR; AFTER-TREATMENT OF THE SHAPED PRODUCTS, e.g. REPAIRING
    • B29C64/00Additive manufacturing, i.e. manufacturing of three-dimensional [3D] objects by additive deposition, additive agglomeration or additive layering, e.g. by 3D printing, stereolithography or selective laser sintering
    • B29C64/10Processes of additive manufacturing
    • B29C64/106Processes of additive manufacturing using only liquids or viscous materials, e.g. depositing a continuous bead of viscous material
    • B29C64/124Processes of additive manufacturing using only liquids or viscous materials, e.g. depositing a continuous bead of viscous material using layers of liquid which are selectively solidified
    • B29C64/129Processes of additive manufacturing using only liquids or viscous materials, e.g. depositing a continuous bead of viscous material using layers of liquid which are selectively solidified characterised by the energy source therefor, e.g. by global irradiation combined with a mask
    • GPHYSICS
    • G03PHOTOGRAPHY; CINEMATOGRAPHY; ELECTROGRAPHY; HOLOGRAPHY
    • G03FPHOTOMECHANICAL PRODUCTION OF TEXTURED OR PATTERNED SURFACES, e.g. FOR PRINTING, FOR PROCESSING OF SEMICONDUCTOR DEVICES; MATERIALS THEREFOR; ORIGINALS THEREFOR; APPARATUS SPECIALLY ADAPTED THEREFOR
    • G03F7/00Photomechanical, e.g. photolithographic, production of textured or patterned surfaces, e.g. printing surfaces; Materials therefor, e.g. comprising photoresists; Apparatus specially adapted therefor
    • G03F7/0037Production of three-dimensional images
    • GPHYSICS
    • G03PHOTOGRAPHY; CINEMATOGRAPHY; ELECTROGRAPHY; HOLOGRAPHY
    • G03FPHOTOMECHANICAL PRODUCTION OF TEXTURED OR PATTERNED SURFACES, e.g. FOR PRINTING, FOR PROCESSING OF SEMICONDUCTOR DEVICES; MATERIALS THEREFOR; ORIGINALS THEREFOR; APPARATUS SPECIALLY ADAPTED THEREFOR
    • G03F7/00Photomechanical, e.g. photolithographic, production of textured or patterned surfaces, e.g. printing surfaces; Materials therefor, e.g. comprising photoresists; Apparatus specially adapted therefor
    • G03F7/20Exposure; Apparatus therefor
    • G03F7/2002Exposure; Apparatus therefor with visible light or UV light, through an original having an opaque pattern on a transparent support, e.g. film printing, projection printing; by reflection of visible or UV light from an original such as a printed image
    • G03F7/2012Exposure; Apparatus therefor with visible light or UV light, through an original having an opaque pattern on a transparent support, e.g. film printing, projection printing; by reflection of visible or UV light from an original such as a printed image using liquid photohardening compositions, e.g. for the production of reliefs such as flexographic plates or stamps
    • GPHYSICS
    • G03PHOTOGRAPHY; CINEMATOGRAPHY; ELECTROGRAPHY; HOLOGRAPHY
    • G03FPHOTOMECHANICAL PRODUCTION OF TEXTURED OR PATTERNED SURFACES, e.g. FOR PRINTING, FOR PROCESSING OF SEMICONDUCTOR DEVICES; MATERIALS THEREFOR; ORIGINALS THEREFOR; APPARATUS SPECIALLY ADAPTED THEREFOR
    • G03F7/00Photomechanical, e.g. photolithographic, production of textured or patterned surfaces, e.g. printing surfaces; Materials therefor, e.g. comprising photoresists; Apparatus specially adapted therefor
    • G03F7/70Exposure apparatus for microlithography
    • G03F7/70375Imaging systems not otherwise provided for, e.g. multiphoton lithography; Imaging systems comprising means for converting one type of radiation into another type of radiation, systems comprising mask with photo-cathode
    • G03F7/70416Stereolithography, 3D printing, rapid prototyping

Abstract

A stereolithography machine using an 'active' mask directly controlled by a computer device as a source for selectively photopolymerising liquid or powdered resins in order to produce three-dimensional objects on the basis of computer data. The 'active' mask enabling an entire resin layer to be cured in a single step is particularly a liquid crystal device (9, 10) combined with a light source (8), an emissive video screen (11) or a laser diode or discharge tube device (12). An image of the mask may be projected through a focusing lens (13) onto a sheet member (14) immersed in a vessel (5) filled with liquid resin (4).

Description

"Making Machine objects by selective photopolymerization of liquids or powders in layers"

The invention relates to a machine for the manufacture of three-dimensional objects, usually of prototype parts, by selective photopolymerization of liquid or powder in layers.

The concept of rapid prototyping by solidifying a layer of liquid resin or powder, known by the term "stereolithography", appeared in the mid-1980s, as a new method for making objects from said computer files computer aided design (CAD). This technology allows to achieve the objects defined in CAD surfacigue guide or volumigue directly into a photopolymerizable resin, without machining, by solidification of a liquid or a powder.

For stereolithography, there are now several systems for solidifying successive layers of liquid or solid resins, or the creation of an object by depositing a layer of molten material.

The currently most common system in the world is designed and operates as follows: By using a focused UV source at a single point, in practice a laser, is polymerised in layers (with a descending plate in the resin liquid) and selectively, a portion of a photopolymerizable resin. The laser, controlled by two mirrors themselves enslaved by a computer system, scans the liquid surface with a tracing speed dependent deflection mirrors. The full tracing time a layer is dependent on the surface to solidify. In addition, the laser is generally controlled so as not to solidify a portion of the part to be produced (for example by drawing braces), to create a "load bearing" structure, the rest of the resin is then solidified in a oven called "Post Curing", with simple ultraviolet lamps. When a layer is fully illuminated by the laser, all parts of the resin thus exposed liguide began a polymerization reaction. Next, a squeegee system comes even out the surface, the plate on which is placed the piece during manufacture goes one step down in the liquid (not equal to the layer thickness to be solidified, is generally 0.1 0.2 mm). The process repeats itself until the completion of the play. Figure 1 of the accompanying drawing recalls the principle of such a machine: the y denotes the laser, the laser beam lb, 2 a set of mirrors for directing the laser beam (in the longitudinal and transverse direction of a horizontal plane, 3 the movable squeegee in translation above the surface of the liguide photopolymerizable resin 4 contained in a vessel 5, and 6 denotes the descending plate in the liquid as and when making the piece 7 being manufactured. the advantages of this technique over conventional methods for producing objects (machining numérigue control among others) are: - Elimination of the need to create toolpaths.

Full object creation (interior and exterior) simultaneously.

- Ability to carry one piece not directly machined parts.

- Relative Speed ​​of production of parts.

Direct connection via an interface to a surface or volume CAD file.

- Implementation of parts in a specific resin. As already mentioned above, this technology is currently widely distributed in the world, with many users, and virtually all computer-aided design software providers surface or volume types have the appropriate interface, interface dénommmée "STL" . However, this known process still has shortcomings. In particular, the parts working speed is limited, on the one hand because of their realization "point by point" (laser scanning) and on the other hand due to the principle used progressive descent of the workpiece (scope by a plate) during manufacture, involving intermediate travel time of this part and of the liquid surface stabilization waiting, after each elementary movement of the workpiece which inevitably creates tub.

The purpose of 1'invention is to create an improved machine for making articles by selective curing of liquid or powder in layers, allowing for much faster execution of these objects, avoiding some of the principles recalled above existing machines.

According to a first aspect of the present invention, the machine stereolithography gu'elle relates to uses, in place of the point method "laser" referred to above, an "active" masgue and a source of insolation of the liquid or powder behind the mask. It can be an ultraviolet source for light-curing resins currently available, or a source of another wavelength adapted to other resins which would harden, or an emissive active source , video screen type or laser diodes or plasma discharge tubes. In any case, the general principle applied is: In order to solidify a liquid layer, creating a mask. This mask represents the layer to solidify. More particularly, the transparent part of the mask passes the wavelength of photons adapted to the resin which is desired, be polymerized (ultraviolet wavelength in general, but may be different depending on the resins used as unworthy above . photons that will affect the photopolymerizable liquid will allow the chemical reaction to the change of state "liquid / solid". the dark portion of the mask prevents the passage of photons and therefore avoids the solidification of liguide in the corresponding area.

A mask that is associated with an optical focusing device, just like a slide projector or overhead projector (Fresnel lens), each mask being itself a kind of slide. This allows for a clear image on the surface of liguide and to solidify what has to be.

Different types of masks are possible, however, to be compatible with the operating speeds envisaged and gue for process flexibility, while mentioning them, we will not consider the type of masgues: photographic, electrostatic by toner layer deposition on glass, tracing on transparent film, plotter or photoplotter, these types of masks being termed "static" or "passive" since it takes extra work on each mask to change the (photography developing, toner delete and resubmit, Drawing a film plotters of different types). Rather, the proposed uses stereolithography machine, the first aspect of the invention considered here, the masks called "active" in that they are directly activated by a computer and electronic system, to change their status according to the layers to solidify. And the "active" masks can be emissive video monitors, liquid crystal devices absorbing a portion of radiation emitted by an ultraviolet source or other (liquid crystal display-type device or strip of liquid crystal), or diode devices laser or plasma discharge tubes emissive (also screen type laser diodes or plasma discharge tubes, or type diode array or tubes).

These masks "assets" are faster than previously qualified masks of "passive", since they are controlled directly and form a moving picture, the successive configurations correspond to the successive layers to solidify. Specifically:

In the case of the video screen, it displays a direct image of the parts to solidify (light portion) and portions not solidify (opaque portion of the screen). It is necessary that the photons emitted by the screen is suitable frequency and intensity to the photopolymerization characteristics of the photopolymerizable liquid resins used. Similarly, in the case of laser diodes connected in strips, it is sufficient to sweep the liquid surface by movement of the diode array by driving their illumination to reconstitute 1'image necessary for the desired polymerization, these diodes before work wavelengths compatible with caractéristigues photopolymerization of the photopolymerizable liquid resins used.

In all cases, rapid solidification is obtained a layer or solidifying in a single operation the whole of the layer (in the case of the screen) or the solidifying during one translational scanning movement or rotation (the case of the diode array). In addition, the transition from one layer to the next takes place instantaneously from the point of view of the mask, by a control of this "active" mask. The combination of these features provides great timeliness. current video screens, whatever their definition, have low UV component, which remains impractical in light of current progress 1'état of light-curing resins, but may nevertheless be used as masks "active" for any resin polymerizing at a wavelength that can be emitted by this type of screen, now or in the future. One can consider video screens black and white or color. When the "active" mask is a device of the LCD type, the device is illuminated by an ultraviolet lamp or a series of ultraviolet lamps, in the case of sensitive resins to ultraviolet radiation (or other type of lamp, depending on resins used). The radiation is focused by an optical device on the photopolymerizable resin, initially liquid. As in the previous case of the video screen, there occurs a complete polymerization and once all of the desired surface to form a complete layer.

Advantageously, the liquid crystal device is itself made up of several successive screens. Indeed, a single mask "active" of this type does not offer a greater than 70% contrast between the transparent portions left and those intended to be opaque to radiation. To increase significantly the contrast between the opagues parts and transparent to ultraviolet light or the like, is therefore mounted at least two screens, and preferably three liquid crystal displays one behind the other, with focusing optics between them as well as diaphragms. The transparent portion representing a very low intensity attenuation (except general attenuation due to the use of the diaphragm) compared to opagues parts, we get 89% attenuation of the opaque parts compared to the transparent parts, with two screens, and 97% with three displays, which is sufficient in both cases to obtain selective polymerization, as desired.

The principle is the same in the case of using liquid crystal arrays instead of screens. Diaphragms then used to refine both the contrast and sharpness by increasing the depth of field.

According to the wavelengths used, a liquid crystal device and a conventional projection optical may be used, or more specifically can be used in transparent materials to more VUV such as quartz.

In the case of laser diode arrays or plasma discharge tube strips, a diode array or tubes may comprise many hundreds or thousands of diodes or tubes of this kind, in the manner of webs used in laser printers. The diodes or tubes are arranged in line, and the strip is controlled to display an image line at a time, thereby lighting the resin along a line, either directly or with focusing by an optical device in order to increase accuracy. The strip is moved step by step, by translation or rotation, and the full image of the layer to solidify is transmitted to the strip line by line, in synchronism with its translational or rotational movement.

In the case of a screen with laser diodes or plasma discharge tubes, the screen being of defined dimensions greater than those of the layers to be solidified, the image of each layer is transmitted at once, without any movement.

In all cases, the display change of each layer is done directly, by controlling "active" mask by means of a computing device, without any mechanical manipulation. For the rest, the machine according to the invention for solidifying successive layers, may remain similar to existing machines; in particular, the part being manufactured may be based on a following tray vertically movable which descends by step in the liquid as to measurement of the formation of said part. However, this principle requires a liquid of the settling time (a few seconds) solidification of two successive layers, and passing a squeegee to equalize the surface.

In order to increase the speed of manufacture of the object, it is proposed according to a second aspect of the present invention, to have the image projected by the "active" mask and the optical device not to the liquid surface, but on the surface of a quartz glass or other material transparent to the wavelengths used, the glass being immersed in the liquid and rise as and measuring the formation of 1 * object to be produced. This eliminates the downward tray, the liquid surface stabilization problem and scraping, resulting in a further increase in speed of execution of parts, accompanying further mechanical simplification of the machine. In particular, the liquid being in direct contact with the glass, there is no possibility of ripples on the surface of the liquid, and any capillary effect problem on newly-solidified portions is removed by construction, since any remaining in the liquid.

The complete machine, incorporating the second aspect of the invention works as follows:

The glass, forming a projection screen is initially positioned at the bottom of the tank filled with liquid resin at a fair height equal to the thickness of the first layer to solidify (for example, 0.1 mm). The "active" mask, such a screen video or liquid crystal device or laser diode device or plasma discharge tubes, displays the image of the first full layer (or line in the case of diode-array or others). The light source will light, with an intensity and a lighting duration depending on the type of resin used, for example in the manner of a "flash" or a shutter system, which solidifies the first layer, which will become the bottom layer of the object.

The glass is then rebound to a height corresponding to the thickness of a layer (e.g. 0.1 mm), 1'interstice between this window and the first solidified layer remains filled with liquid by the effect of the pressure without need for leveling. The mask then displays the image of the second layer to be solidified, the light source nouvau sends its radiation to solidify the second layer, and so on jusgu'à obtaining the complete object. After the process, the glass is raised to the total height of the workpiece, and the "active" mask device has completed its work, the formed piece yet being totally immersed in the liquid. A tray with lifting means, originally located at the bottom of the tank was the finished part, completely solidified. This part is then removed from the plate, washed with a suitable solvent and made available.

The sizes of manufacturable objects by stereolithography machine 1 according to the invention are not particularly limited, the optimum being between 300 mm volume to the cube for smaller machines, and standard machines from 600 to 1000 mm cubed. Larger sizes are possible, possibly by multiplying the masks "active" or by moving a single mask, or, more wisely, successively illuminating several parts or areas of the object to manufacture, using only one but fixed mask combined with a special optical device, including a plurality of mirrors, some of which are movable for selectively directing radiation to different parts or zones of the in-process item.

As regards accuracy and manufacturing, it is entirely related to the precision of the illumination element, namely liquid crystal cell or pixel of the video display, or diode laser or discharge tube, multiplied by the magnification factor of optigue device. This optical device also makes it possible to illuminate different parts of the surface to solidify, and this several times (for example, a square of 30 cm side can be illuminated by nine "flashes" successive each covering a square of side 10 cm , and in this case, the accuracy will be that of the square of 10 cm side). In the case of a liquid crystal display 1000 by 1000 dots, and 200 mm side, the precision of each point is: 200/1000 mm, or 0.2 mm for a magnification factor of 1 and 0.1 mm for a magnification factor of 1/2 (1'image reduction of • a factor 2).

In the case of an array of liquid crystals, diodes or discharge tubes, this accuracy will be of the same order, according to the arrangement of the elements on the array (typically 300 to 600 dots per inch, or 25.1 mm to 300 to 600 points); direct precision therefore one magnification factor is 25.1 / 300 to 25.1 / 600 is: from 0.085 to 0.043 mm. In comparison, the accuracy of stereolithography machines currently provided by different manufacturers is not better than 0.2 mm on small objects.

Regarding the speed of work, currently available machines offer speeds of the order of a solidified layer every 40 seconds on average, this time is due, firstly, to the laser scanning speed, and secondly to the waiting time between layers (liquid stabilization and passage of the squeegee as explained above). The machine object of the invention eliminates the laser tracing time, stabilization of the liquid and the passage of the squeegee. As a result, the fabrication time per layer can pass to 2 seconds, for polymerization of 0.1 mm in depth, which allows to achieve an object of 10 cm high, regardless of its length, width, and its average thickness, in 2000 seconds or approximately 35 minutes.

Furthermore, the object of the invention machine is a relatively low cost, compared to the current cost of stereolithography machines, and it can affect corporate consulting firms, even small, making objects in the following industrial areas: automotive, aerospace, appliance, engineering, computer, electrical, electromechanical, electronic, telephony, packaging, glass products, sports equipment, toys, eyewear, medical equipment ...

Anyway, the invention will be better understood using the following description, with reference to the appended diagrammatic drawing representing, by way of non-limiting examples, some embodiments of this machine for producing objects by photopolymerization selective liquids or powders layers:

Figure 2 is a block schematic diagram of stereolithography machine object of the invention, provided with its variants;

Figure 3 is a schematic view illustrating various design modes contemplated a masgue "active" or "passive", in conjunction with the invention; Figure 4 is a vertical sectional view of a machine with LCD-based mask; Figure 5 is a perspective view of a liquid crystal module based mask machine;

6 illustrates a first possible po¬ sitionnement of Figure 5 of the liquid crystal device; Figure 7 illustrates a second possibility of po¬ sitionnement of Figure 5 of the liquid crystal device; Figure 8 is a perspective view of a strip of mask based on machine laser diodes or plasma discharge tubes; Figures 9 and 10 illustrate two possible positions of the laser diode arrangement or Figure 8 tubes;

Figure 11 is a vertical sectional view of a machine according 1'invention with diving glass into the resin vessel;

Figure 12 shows a variant of the machine of Figure 11;

Figure 13 is a perspective view showing a machine designed for producing large objects.

In Figure 2, which is a common principle diagram to all embodiments of the invention, 8 denotes the light source, used with an "active" mask 9 of the LCD type, or with a mask "active" array 10 of the type of liquid crystals. Alternatively, 11 designates an "active" mask type video display, and 12 an "active" mask consisting of a laser diode device or plasma discharge tubes (as screen or strips), masks these "active "he and 12 constituting themselves the light source, thus not requiring 1'intervention the separate light source 8.

Between the "active" mask 9,10,11 or 12, on the one hand, and the tank 5 containing the liquid photopolymerizable resin 4, on the other hand, is interposed an optical focusing device 13, which projects one image of • mask on a glass 14. the tank 5 includes a tank bottom plate 15, vertically movable, which is actuated at the end of process to exit the manufactured part (not shown here). The assembly 16 including the eventual illumination source 8, the mask "active" 9,10,11 or 12, the focusing optic 13 and the pane 14 constitutes a vertically movable part, sinking partially into the vessel 5. the sub-assembly 17, consisting of the focusing device 13 and the glass 14 is immersed (during operation) in the liquid resin 4 contained in the tank 5.

As 1'illustre in addition the figure 3, the mask used to define the portion of the resin to be solidified in the vessel 5, to form a horizontal layer of the object to be produced. The image of this part, as it appears on a screen 18 is shown in black in the upper right of Figure 3. The various possible methods for selectively solidify and layers, the photopolymerizable resin contained in the tank 5 are designated by Roman numerals I to VI:

(I) - Powder electrostatically deposited on a transparent substrate 19 by a device 20 (mask "passive" not retained by the present invention).

(II) - Slide or film 21 interposed between the light source 8 and the focusing optics 13 (another type of mask "passive" not retained by the present invention). (III) - A liquid crystal device including liquid crystal display 9 constituting an "active" mask.

(IV) - Video Monitor 11 constituting another kind of mask "active", incorporating the light source.

(V) - A device for laser diodes or plasma discharge tubes 12. (VI) - An apparatus using one of the masks

"Active" previous 9,11 or 12, but disposed in a vertical rather than horizontal plane and associated with at least one deflecting mirror 22 in an arrangement to be described in more detail below.

4 shows, in greater detail, a machine according to the invention with mask "active" based on liquid crystal display, arranged horizontally. Between the light source 8 and a first liquid crystal screen 9a there is interposed a diffuser 23 to ensure uniform distribution of light. There is further provided, here, a second liquid crystal display 9b, located below the first. Between the two LCD screens 9a and 9b are arranged a first diaphragm 24 and a first focusing optics 25. Under the lower 9b liquid crystal screen are arranged a second diaphragm 26 and a second focusing optigue 27. All these components are supported by a same frame 28. a plate 14 of glass or other material transparent to wavelengths of the radiation used is fixed to a waterproof case 29, sinking in the liquid resin 4 contained in the tank 5. the focusing optics 27 projects the image formed by the two LCD screens 9a and 9b, on the glass 14, with possibility of extension or reduction of the image. As to measurement of the formation of the solidified layers of resin, the glass 14 is raised. The end of manufacture, the shaped article itself is recovered and extracted from the still liquid resin, by moving the tank bottom plate 15.

Figure 5 shows a machine with "active" mask based on liquid crystal array comprising a mobile device 30 horizontally above the tub 5 according to the arrow F, the device 30 comprising, in a manner analogous to one • previous example, the light source 8, means 23 for uniform distribution of light, a first array of liquid crystal 10a, a diaphragm system 24, a focusing lens system 25 and a second linear array of liquid crystal 10b. 31 horizontal guide rails allow the translation of the device 30, over the entire useful length of the tank 5, to form "line by line" each layer of solidified resin, an electronically controlled device in the line display, driving the translation of the device 30.

According to a first possibility of positioning, illustrated by Figure 6, the "active masgue" constituted by the previously detailed device 30 is arranged directly in a waterproof case 29 with transparent plate 14 at the bottom, which is immersed in the resin 4 in the vessel 5.

Alternatively positioning illustrated in Figure 7, the device 30 to base web crystals liguides is located outside of the tank 5, behind a focusing optigue 13 type "zoom" with horizontal optical axis, a mirror 22 sending the image on the glass 14 of the waterproof case 29 gui immersed in the resin 4 in the vessel 5.

Figures 8,9 and 10 correspond respectively to Figures 5,6 and 7, but illustrate a machine with "active" mask device-based laser diode or plasma discharge tubes, here in particular a strip 12 of laser diodes or tubes discharge. The assembly 32 constituted by the bar 12 and by the associated focusing optics 13 is horizontally movable in translation along the arrow F, along guide rails 31, over the useful length of the tank 5 containing the liquid resin 4.

As above, Figures 9 and 10 illustrate the positioning possibilities of the assembly 32, or in a sealed box 29 dipped in the resin 4, or externally with the interposition of a focusing optic 13 type "zoom" and a reflecting mirror 22.

11 shows, in greater detail, a machine according to 1'invention with window 14 forming the bottom of a waterproof case 29 immersed in the resin 4, the mask device "active" (of any of the types described above) being located outside, and an image forming a focusing optics 13 and a mirror 22 used to project over the immersed glass 14, back to as solidification of successive layers of the piece 7 during manufacture.

Figure 12 shows a variant without reflecting mirror, but maintaining a waterproof case 29 with glass 14 immersed in the tank 5 4 photopolymerizable resin.

Finally, Figure 13 shows a machine for the realization of large objects, reference numeral 7 designating the already made part of such a piece, for example of great length, produced from a tank 5 of elongate shape, filled with resin . A waterproof case 29 with window 14, of corresponding shape, is immersed in the tank 5. The device "active" mask, for example with light source 8, liquid crystal display 9, and focusing optics 13, is arranged externally. A set of several mirrors 22a, 22b, 22c, some of which are pivotally mounted, allows to alternately send images of the mask "active" on several adjacent parts of the glass 14, so in different adjacent regions of the part being formed 7 , so as to achieve the complete part in successively illuminating several parts by which each layer is divided.

Claims

1. Machine for producing three-dimensional objects by selective photopolymerization of liquids or powders in layers, said machine for "stereolithography", allowing to solidify successive layers a photopolymerizable resin (4) liquid or powder contained in a vessel (5), from computer files, characterized in that it comprises at least one "active" mask (9,10,11,12) directly activated by a computer system and electronics, "active" mask emitting, or that selectively transmits, light radiation wavelength suitable for the resin to be polymerized, to display an image corresponding to a complete layer to solidify or to a line of this layer.
2. stereolithography machine according to claim 1, characterized in that the "active" mask is a liquid crystal device (9,10), absorbing part of the radiation emitted by a light source (8).
3. stereolithography machine according to claim 2, characterized in that the "active" mask is constituted by at least one liquid crystal display (9; 9a, 9b).
4. Machine for stereolithography according to claim 2, characterized in that the "active" mask is constituted by at least one web of liquid crystal (10; 10a, 10b) mounted mobile in translation (arrow F) or in rotation.
5. Machine for stereolithography according to claim 3 or 4, characterized in that the mask "active" comprises at least two liquid crystal displays (9a, 9b) or at least two strips of liquid crystal (10a, 10b) provided the one behind the other, focusing optics (25,27) and the diaphragms (24,26) being disposed between these screens or successive webs (9a, 9b; 10a, 10b).
6. stereolithography machine according to claim 1, characterized in that the "active" mask is an emissive video screen (11).
7. stereolithography machine according to claim 1, characterized in that the "active" mask is a laser diode device or plasma discharge tubes (12).
8. stereolithography machine according to Claim 7, characterized in that the mask "active" (12) is constituted by a laser diode or plasma screen or discharge tubes.
9. stereolithography machine according to Claim 7, characterized in that the mask "active"
(12) is constituted by a laser diode array or plasma discharge tubes, mounted mobile in translation (arrow F) or in rotation.
10. Machine for stereolithography according to any one of claims l to 9, characterized in that at mask "active" (9,10,11,12) is associated an optical device (13) of the image focusing on a plate or window (14) transparent to the radiation used, said plate or window (14) being immersed in the liquid resin (4) and lift the as of the formation of the object to be produced (7).
11. stereolithography machine according to Claim 10, characterized in that the device (30, 32) to "active" mask is positioned in or on a waterproof case (29), the glass plate or above
(14) constitutes the bottom.
12. stereolithography machine according to Claim 10, characterized in that the device (30,32) to "active" mask is positioned externally, a focusing optic (13) and at least one mirror (22; 22a, 22b, 22c ) being provided to return the image of the device to masgue "active" on the plate or window (14) of the waterproof case from the base (29).
13. stereolithography machine according to claim 12, characterized in gue for producing large objects, it includes a single "active" mask associated with a set of a plurality of mirrors (22a, 22b, 22c), some of which are movably mounted, for selectively directing radiation to different parts or areas of the object (7) during fabrication.
PCT/FR1993/001218 1992-06-05 1993-12-09 Machine for making objects by selectively photopolymerising layered liquids or powders WO1995015841A1 (en)

Priority Applications (2)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
FR9207158A FR2692053A1 (en) 1992-06-05 1992-06-05 Model prodn. by selective photopolymerisation of liq. or powder - using active liq. crystal mask or active light source controlled by computer instead of controlled movement focused laser
PCT/FR1993/001218 WO1995015841A1 (en) 1992-06-05 1993-12-09 Machine for making objects by selectively photopolymerising layered liquids or powders

Applications Claiming Priority (2)

Application Number Priority Date Filing Date Title
FR9207158A FR2692053A1 (en) 1992-06-05 1992-06-05 Model prodn. by selective photopolymerisation of liq. or powder - using active liq. crystal mask or active light source controlled by computer instead of controlled movement focused laser
PCT/FR1993/001218 WO1995015841A1 (en) 1992-06-05 1993-12-09 Machine for making objects by selectively photopolymerising layered liquids or powders

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WO1995015841A1 true true WO1995015841A1 (en) 1995-06-15

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GB2422344A (en) * 2005-01-24 2006-07-26 Univ Montfort Rapid prototyping using infrared sintering
EP1849587A1 (en) * 2006-04-28 2007-10-31 Envisiontec GmbH Device and method for creating a three dimensional object using mask illumination
WO2011005690A3 (en) * 2009-07-06 2011-03-24 3D Systems, Inc. Imaging assembly
WO2011020599A3 (en) * 2009-08-18 2011-04-21 Sintermask Gmbh Method and device for producing a three-dimensional object
US8048359B2 (en) 2008-10-20 2011-11-01 3D Systems, Inc. Compensation of actinic radiation intensity profiles for three-dimensional modelers
CN101063812B (en) 2006-04-28 2012-09-05 想象科技有限公司 Device and method for creating a three dimensional object using mask illumination
USRE43955E1 (en) 2004-05-10 2013-02-05 Envisiontec Gmbh Process for the production of a three-dimensional object with resolution improvement by pixel-shift
US8658076B2 (en) 2007-10-26 2014-02-25 Envisiontec Gmbh Process and freeform fabrication system for producing a three-dimensional object
US8708685B2 (en) 2009-11-25 2014-04-29 3D Systems, Inc. Imaging assembly
FR3000698A1 (en) * 2013-01-09 2014-07-11 Phidias Technologies Manufacture of an object by volume lithography, a spatial resolution IMPROVED
US8862260B2 (en) 2004-05-10 2014-10-14 Envisiontec Gmbh Process for the production of a three-dimensional object with resolution improvement by “pixel shift”
US9354510B2 (en) 2011-12-16 2016-05-31 Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, Ltd. EUV mask and method for forming the same
GB2538333A (en) * 2015-05-13 2016-11-16 Photocentric Ltd Method for making an object
US9527244B2 (en) 2014-02-10 2016-12-27 Global Filtration Systems Apparatus and method for forming three-dimensional objects from solidifiable paste

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US5026146A (en) * 1989-04-03 1991-06-25 Hug William F System for rapidly producing plastic parts
EP0484086A1 (en) * 1990-10-29 1992-05-06 E.I. Du Pont De Nemours And Company Solid imaging semi-permeable film coating
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US8862260B2 (en) 2004-05-10 2014-10-14 Envisiontec Gmbh Process for the production of a three-dimensional object with resolution improvement by “pixel shift”
USRE43955E1 (en) 2004-05-10 2013-02-05 Envisiontec Gmbh Process for the production of a three-dimensional object with resolution improvement by pixel-shift
GB2422344B (en) * 2005-01-24 2008-08-20 Univ Montfort Rapid prototyping method using infrared sintering
GB2422344A (en) * 2005-01-24 2006-07-26 Univ Montfort Rapid prototyping using infrared sintering
EP1849587A1 (en) * 2006-04-28 2007-10-31 Envisiontec GmbH Device and method for creating a three dimensional object using mask illumination
CN101063811B (en) 2006-04-28 2012-12-19 想象科技有限公司 Device and method for creating a three dimensional object using mask illumination
CN101063812B (en) 2006-04-28 2012-09-05 想象科技有限公司 Device and method for creating a three dimensional object using mask illumination
US8658076B2 (en) 2007-10-26 2014-02-25 Envisiontec Gmbh Process and freeform fabrication system for producing a three-dimensional object
US8048359B2 (en) 2008-10-20 2011-11-01 3D Systems, Inc. Compensation of actinic radiation intensity profiles for three-dimensional modelers
US8568646B2 (en) 2008-10-20 2013-10-29 3D Systems, Inc. Compensation of actinic radiation intensity profiles for three-dimensional modelers
WO2011005690A3 (en) * 2009-07-06 2011-03-24 3D Systems, Inc. Imaging assembly
CN102481728A (en) * 2009-08-18 2012-05-30 森特尔马思科有限责任公司 Method and device for producing a three-dimensional object
WO2011020599A3 (en) * 2009-08-18 2011-04-21 Sintermask Gmbh Method and device for producing a three-dimensional object
US9186847B2 (en) 2009-08-18 2015-11-17 Sintermask Gmbh Method and device for producing a three-dimensional object
CN102481728B (en) * 2009-08-18 2015-01-14 森特尔马思科有限责任公司 Method and device for producing a three-dimensional object
US8708685B2 (en) 2009-11-25 2014-04-29 3D Systems, Inc. Imaging assembly
US9354510B2 (en) 2011-12-16 2016-05-31 Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company, Ltd. EUV mask and method for forming the same
WO2014108473A1 (en) 2013-01-09 2014-07-17 Prodways Production of a volume object by lithography, having improved spatial resolution
FR3000698A1 (en) * 2013-01-09 2014-07-11 Phidias Technologies Manufacture of an object by volume lithography, a spatial resolution IMPROVED
US9632420B2 (en) 2013-01-09 2017-04-25 Prodways Production of a volume object by lithography, having improved spatial resolution
US9527244B2 (en) 2014-02-10 2016-12-27 Global Filtration Systems Apparatus and method for forming three-dimensional objects from solidifiable paste
US9975296B2 (en) 2014-02-10 2018-05-22 Global Filtration Systems Apparatus and method for forming three-dimensional objects from solidifiable paste
GB2538333A (en) * 2015-05-13 2016-11-16 Photocentric Ltd Method for making an object
WO2016181149A1 (en) * 2015-05-13 2016-11-17 Photocentric Limited Method for making an object
GB2538333B (en) * 2015-05-13 2017-12-06 Photocentric Ltd Method for making an object

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