3d printing moves align technology toward $1.3 billion in sales
From the consumer\'s point of view, the painful process of replacing a traditional braces made of metal or ceramics and wires seems to be a dunk, a home run, or any other exaggerated statement you can imagine. It would be thought that dentists and orthodontic doctors would flock to the new method called visalign, which is Align Technology Inc. created. But their story is not a story that is immediately adopted, far from it. Considering that Align Technology estimates that there are 10 million orthodontic cases per year, and that the Invisalign product applies to 6 million of them, they have only 9% of them. This leaves us a lot of room to grow-especially when you find them creating these aligning devices on a bunch of 3D printers. If you can\'t watch the video above, you can see it directly on YouTube. With the company approaching a market value of $15 billion, this is probably the best year to date-more than $1. 3 billion of sales are 2017-they are making big strides. Bring a custommade, FDA- Approval products that are promoted and grown to the market at this rate is not an easy task. The company\'s sales in the first quarter of this year were $0. 31 billion, compared with $0. 356 billion in the second quarter. 91% of their income comes from clear matching; Their iTero 3D scanning system allows the dentist to quickly scan and model the patient\'s teeth. What impressed me was that they had quietly built a factory of dozens of high-end 3D printers. From the video, I estimate that there are 50 to 60 machines on the factory floor of about 20,000 square feet. While this is still small in terms of most manufacturing facilities, it is one of the largest, if not the largest, dedicated 3D printing production spaces available today. If you \'ve been to a larger trader Joe specialty grocery store, you\'ll know how much space Align Technology has to produce more than 220,000 clear aligners a day, nearly 8 million a year Clarification-Align is not creating 220,000 standard products per day, but 220,000 custom products Make products every day. Each clear alignment is completely different from the one on the printer platform. This is the real mind. bending part. They bring a lot of manufacturing methods for individually designed products. To be clear, this is not one of the desktop 3D printers mentioned in the media, but a high If you watch the video, including adding a terminal system for the robot arm, it helps keep the process moving quickly and efficiently. This is a great feat. The company uses stereo printing (SLA) 3D printers from 3D Systems, one of the industry\'s pioneers, make these clear alignment possible. Many people will simply call them plastic, but they are an advanced medical device. grade, FDA- Approved polymer. ( Click the Continue button below to enter the second page. ) In fact, Srini kza, vice president of product innovation at Align, explains that material science is a big focus for the company. \"A key area in which the field is rapidly evolving is the development of highly innovative materials. Early materials may be fragile, but today\'s polymers have advanced by leaps and bounds. \"These emerging material formulations will even exceed the quality we see now, enabling the industry to print more versatile and bio-compatible parts directly in the printer,\" he said . \". According to the video, I guess they are using the 3D system Figure 4 additive manufacturing platform, or some variant of it; They are most likely the early adop of the technology. There are also several iPro 8000 machines on the floor. This helps explain how the company shipped 0. 327 billion total coordination units ( They have accumulated total since they started the company)to 4. 5 million patients Although certain patents are about to expire, the combination of 3D printing manufacturing capabilities, material science advances, is willing to maintain the well-known advantages of startups-and may keep technology at the forefront of an industry field, in fact, invented and prepared for serious growth.