Protolabs launched a DfAM analysis tool

Automated Design Feedback Tool for 3D-Printed Parts

July 12, 2023
Protolabs has launched an instant manufacturability analysis tool with expanded material and finishing options for 3D printing.

Product developers and engineers make quick work of product designs when they access a manufacturability analysis tool from Protolabs.

Protolab’s design for additive manufacturability (DfAM) analysis tool is an optimization suite that is integrated with its quoting platform. The tool provides automated feedback that enable users to fine-tune additive designs before parts are printed. The process accelerates product development and is touted for reducing costs associated with engineering complex parts, thereby avoiding unnecessary production costs.

“Protolabs was one of the first digital manufacturing companies to launch automated manufacturability analysis on molded and machined parts—a tool that quickly became essential for our customers during their iterative design process,” said Oleg Ryaboy, chief technology officer, Protolabs. “We’re excited to expand our design for manufacturability suite into 3D printing so customers can take advantage of the same speed and cost-reduction benefits.”

Read More: How Design for Excellence (DfX) Intersects with Rapid Prototyping

More Benefits with DfAM Analysis

The objective of DfAM is to minimize risk of errors when creating a part or tool. The DfAM method and process optimizes performance and function at the design phase. In additive manufacturing applications, DfAM exploits key traits that are endemic to 3D printing, such as wall thickness, shrinkage, part orientation, overhangs and layer height.

Further benefits associated with using the DfAM process are:

  • Additive manufacturing is a digital process, which aligns with advanced engineering and automation tools.  
  • Increased complexity in design does not translate to increased costs.
  • Mass customization and tooling is more accessible, as producing components with slight variations in design don’t significantly affect the price. 

Read More: A Peek Inside Proto Labs’ 3D-Printing Facility

A Single Manufacturing Source

Protolabs noted that DfAM analysis is available globally on parts uploaded online at for any of the company’s plastic and metal 3D printing technologies. When design engineers receive their quotes, the analysis highlights potential manufacturability advisories concerning thin walls, small gaps and parts that exceed maximum size restrictions. 

The company noted that the digital toolkit can produce low-volume parts within days, while their digital network of manufacturing partners, powered by Hubsopen up advanced capabilities and volume pricing at higher quantities.

Sponsored Recommendations

How BASF turns data into savings

May 7, 2024
BASF continuously monitors the health of 63 substation assets — with Schneider’s Service Bureau and EcoStruxure™ Asset Advisor. ►Learn More: https://www.schn...

Agile design thinking: A key to operation-level digital transformation acceleration

May 7, 2024
Digital transformation, aided by agile design thinking, can reduce obstacles to change. Learn about 3 steps that can guide success.

Can new digital medium voltage circuit breakers help facilities reduce their carbon footprint?

May 7, 2024
Find out how facility managers can easily monitor energy usage to create a sustainable, decarbonized environment using digital MV circuit breakers.

The Digital Thread: End-to-End Data-Driven Manufacturing

May 1, 2024
Creating a Digital Thread by harnessing end-to-end manufacturing data is providing unprecedented opportunities to create efficiencies in the world of manufacturing.

Voice your opinion!

To join the conversation, and become an exclusive member of Machine Design, create an account today!