LPE have become the first 3D Printing bureau in the UK & Ireland to offer HPS (Hybrid Photosynthesis) – the groundbreaking new additive manufacturing technology by Axtra3D.

The first AM process to combine both laser and light technologies, HPS offers the ‘best of both worlds’ in terms of the SLA and DLP processes. Inventor Gianni Zitelli said the goal of the technology was to end the trade-off that product developers and manufacturers are usually forced into when selecting an AM process to use.

Traditionally, taking advantage of the precision and aesthetic accuracy of SLA would mean compromising on material functionality. Meanwhile, DLP offered a plethora of production-grade materials but with a very limited build frame. HPS offers the precision, surface quality and superior build size of hi-res SLA, with the production-grade materials of DLP.

In addition, the machine (the Lumia X1) is opensource, meaning it can run a far wider range of materials than other AM machines. We are starting off with 3 materials, 2 of which are designed for ultra-high temperature production applications. Going forward, we will be introducing new materials on an ongoing basis, to meet a range of different functional application requirements.

Asked about what opportunities this new technology will offer our customers, Sales Director Campbell Evans said: “It will allow customers to scale up and sharpen up their plastic production. HPS parts are not only substantially bigger than DLP parts, they’re also precise, with production-grade surface quality right off the machine. We expect that clients across a range of industries will take advantage of this, including the medical, aerospace, motorsport, and consumer sectors.”

HPS is the latest of a series of investments aimed at expanding and optimising production capabilities for customers. Other investments have included advanced new 3D Scanning technology, the building of an in-house quality-testing lab, DyeMansion post-processing technology, high-speed CNC machining capabilities and a 4th metal printing machine. We are also currently in the final stages of AS9100 certification which will enable us to manufacture critical parts for aerospace. “There’s no question, the future of additive manufacturing lies in production” says Engineering Director Patrick Walls, “At LPE we are committed to making investments to ensure our customers continue to avail of the absolute latest AM production technologies”


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