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Ellen Zeng

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rapid prototyping china


rapid prototyping china


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How does SLA 3D Printing Work?

2020-12-12 02:02:20

3D printing is a process of manufacturing a three-dimensional solid object or assembly part from a digital 3D CAD model. It is an additive manufacturing process where an object is created by depositing, laying down, or solidifying successive layers of material to transform a digital file into a 3D object under a computer-controlled process. Different technologies and methods such as material extrusion, vat polymerization, bed fusion, and Stereolithography are used for 3D Printing.

Stereolithography or SLA 3D printing is one of the most advanced and accurate printing processes to create three-dimensional objects using digital CAD files. It is an additive manufacturing technique that uses a high-powered laser to harden liquid photopolymer resin to form a desired solid shape. As a widely recognized industrial 3D printing process, SLA 3D printing is used to manufacture complex models, assembly parts, and prototypes with high accuracy and excellent surface finish.

How does it work?

The basic components of an SLA 3D printer include a tank filled with the photopolymer resin, a perforated platform, an ultraviolet laser, and a computer interface to complete the whole process. The SLA 3D printing workflow combines the three basic processes – design, printing, and post-process to create a physical object.


In any additive manufacturing process, 3D designing is the first step using CAD software. A CAD engineer or 3D designer incorporates every detail, measurement, and specification as per the requirements to design a 3D model in the digital format. After designing the concept using CAD software, the CAD files are exported in a 3D printable digital file (STL or OBJ file).

STL (standard tessellation/triangle language) files are the most preferred digital file formats for 3D object printing. STL digital files every detail of the object such as the geometry of the 3D object and other required attributes.

SLA 3D Printing:

A standard SLA printer includes a3D slider software to configure the pre-printing settings to feed an STL file for generating G-code language for 3D printers. It is an important step to slice the digital model into layers for additive printing. Once the initial settings and setups are completed, the printing software sends the instruction to the SLA printer to begin the layered printing process.

The high-powered lasers in the 3D printer solidify each layer of the digital model using the photopolymer resin until the whole object is created. The laser solidifies the liquid resin where it hits as per the uploaded design into the software. A computer interface controls and manages the laser to design the appropriate coordinates as per the digital feed.


Once the 3D printing process is completed, any uncured or excess resin is removed from the object surface using isopropyl alcohol. Post-curing is the next step that enables the object to achieve the highest possible accuracy, strength, and stability. Post-processing also involves some additional steps depending on the material type and part to get a high surface finish as per the industrial requirements.

So, this is how the SLA 3D printing process is done that requires a high level of skill, knowledge, and expertise at all levels to create a highly accurate and high finish object. If you are looking for Industrial additive manufacturing, you should look for a reputed and experienced company that has expertise in SLA 3D printing in China for your applications.

A professional and qualified team can help you out with your 3D designs and feeds to get the right settings for 3D printing your industrial applications. They ensure to meet your expectations with every little detail right from designing to post-processing to achieve the best results.

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