Originally, the Delta technology was invented in 1985 by Doctor Reymond CLAVEL of the Polytechnic School in Lausanne. This technology was patented but is now off-patent and in the public domain.
Quickness and stability
In a traditional 3D printer, a motor governs all the movements of an axis (forwards/backwards, left/right). It also has to control inertia generated by the carriage (and, more often than not, inertia exerted by the extruder motors) when inverting directions, which significantly reduces speed and accelerations.
With the Delta technology, the three axis carriages move simultaneously which combines motor torque and complement each other. In the image shown, when the head moves along an axis (e.g. following the red arrow), the three carriages move vertically and collectively (following the green arrows). The three motors simultaneously supply torque for a movement along one single axis.
This means less moving mass. A traditional 3D printer is often composed of a carriage that moves another carriage which supports the extruder head (and also the extruder motor in many cases). With the SpiderBot printer, only the extruder head and the cooling fan are mobile.
Movements in the Z axis are almost 50 times more rapid. In the majority of traditional 3D printers, Z movements are performed using threaded rods and nuts which limit speed in the Z axis to about 300mm/min. Thanks to the Delta technology, we can attain Z axis speeds similar to those of the X and Y axes, in other words, greater than 20,000mm/min.
The part support heating plate and the part itself are stationary, only the extruder head is mobile.