The sudden proliferation and adoption of relatively inexpensive Blu-ray players led to the availability of low cost near UV laser diodes capable of curing liquid resin, and the designers and engineers at Full Spectrum Laser (aka; FSL3D) have seized the moment for their vision of a high quality 3D printer, The Pegasus Touch.
As they'd already used their software and electronics technology to develop laser cutting and engraving products, Full Spectrum Laser decided to create an affordable, high quality laser-based Stereolithography (SLA) 3D printer they say "sets a new standard for desktop 3D printing."
Starting at a price point below $2000 on Kickstarter, Pegasus Touch produces what the company says is "by far the best quality 3D printing output for its price."
And it's all about the speed.
Full Spectrum Laser say controlling lasers properly takes years of experience, and the Pegasus Touch's advanced control electronics can pulse its laser source at over 500kHz while moving the laser beam at 3000mm/sec. It's done using the same special FSL real-time laser processor used in $100,000 scanning laser systems.
Faster laser control allows the Pegasus Touch to tune and cure resin more quickly without sacrificing quality, and it amps up the output speed to more than 10 times the rate of FDM printers and by some three to five times the speed of most other SLA printers.
Most current desktop 3D printers which sell below $3000 use FDM technology, but it's laser-based SLA technology which, according to Full Spectrum Laser, that "sets the gold standard for quality since it was invented in the 1980s."
Many low cost printers transfer several gigabytes of post-processed data from a tethered PC, but the Pegasus Touch includes an on-board Linux computer capable of doing 3D processing computation on the printer itself.
Another innovation is the inclusion of a full internet-connected touchscreen computer in the printer itself, and FSL say that allowed them to build in a 3D Printer App Store which streamlines the process of finding high quality, pretested models right from the printer itself.
The Pegasus Touch features 405nm scanning galvo laser liquid resin stereolithography, a build area up to 7" x 7" x 9", a case which takes up only 11" x 14" x 22.5" on the desktop, a built-in 1GHz Linux computer with 512mB memory and 4.3" Touchscreen LCD Interface.
Also included are Ethernet, USB, WiFi (with the purchase of an optional USB dongle), the built-in, on-board Internet Connected 3D Printer App Store, and integrated multi-touch capable desktop software with automatic slicing and automatic breakaway support generation for Windows PC. The company has plans to add Mac support in the future.
FSL3D will have a display booth at the 3D Printer World Expo in Burbank, Calif., Jan. 31-Feb. 1.