Autodesk Revamps Meshmixer; Simplifies Multi-Material 3D Printing

By CIOReview | Thursday, January 28, 2016
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FREMONT, CA: The 3D printing community acknowledges the resourcefulness of Autodesk’s free triangle mesh software since its market existence. Autodesk has introduced a new “complex objects” feature in its latest version of the software called Meshmixer 3.0 to simplify 3D model preparation for multi-material 3D printing. The latest release of the revamped software coupled with the additional features strives to resolve all the issues encountered in the earlier versions.

Meshmixer 3.0 features multi-material design, enabling users to manipulate and deconstruct 3D models in an entirely new way. Users can select internal regions of a 3D model which are treated as separate fragments of the same object. These independent parts can be altered in specific ways, without compromising on the shape of the object as a whole. This latest addition of the software helps save users’ effort on storing an assembly of distinct parts. Furthermore, Meshmixer 3.0 automatically infers the multi-material decomposition of the 3D model based on the markup of the surface. The remarkable fact about the new integration stresses on its ability to print with multi-material 3D printers such as the Stratasys Object Connex.

“Meshmixer 3.0 has new features that make it easy to 3D print objects consisting of multiple materials,” said Scott Sheppard, Program Manager, Autodesk Labs. “You can group subsets of mesh points into collections called complexes and then assign different materials to those complexes.”

Meshmixer 3.0 also introduces an array of new features for users working with laser cutters. Users can flatten 3D surface patches into their constituent 2D faces with the new “Unwrap” tool, after which those flattened patches are exported as SVG (Scalable Vector Graphics) file to be sent to printers or laser cutters. Additionally, the new “Units/Dimensions” option allows precise scaling of a 3D model and lets the user to input any known measurements for specific regions of the 3D model for the software to calculate appropriate measurements of other regions. This feature particularly comes handy when working with photogrammetry projects.