Just over a year ago, HP CEO Meg Whitman promised the company would deliver a 3D printer that service providers could wield by the middle of 2014. Now the company has made a lie of that claim by revealing that the Multi Jet Fusion printer won’t be available for another two years.
“Multi Jet Fusion” looks to be the name of the printing process HP will use and the name of future printers. HP says the process works as follows:
“HP Multi Jet FusionTM technology starts by laying down a thin layer of material in the working area. Next, the carriage containing an HP Thermal Inkjet array passes from left-to-right, printing chemical agents across the full working area. The layering and energy processes are combined in a continuous pass of the second carriage from top-to-bottom. The process continues, layer-by-layer, until a complete part is formed.”
The company speaks of using “fusing agents” and “detailing agents”. The former cause inks to bond together, the latter will be used “ where the fusing action needs to be reduced or amplified.” Detailing agents would help to determine whether a printed object is rough or smooth to the touch.