3D Printing Business News: FIT AG Invests in EOS 3D Printing Systems, Nexeo and MakeShaper Release New Filaments
This week, German additive manufacturing solutions specialist FIT AG announced that it is investing in five M 400-4 3D printing systems from industrial 3D printing supplier EOS, in order to expand its industrial 3D printing capacities and manufacture metal components.
“The new generation of EOS systems not only convinced us with the outstanding quality of the components it produces, but above all with its open interfaces, which allow us to seamlessly integrate these machines in our quality assurance concepts – a further big step towards achieving the industrial-scale Additive Manufacturing of components,” said Carl Fruth, CEO of FIT AG. “It is our declared objective to supply our customers with components of exceptional quality from one single source. We intend to achieve this objective as we move forward with EOS as a dependable partner and long-term supplier.”
FIT specializes in additive manufacturing solutions with short lead times, and efficiently supplies companies from multiple industries with optimized, 3D printed components. In order to meet the growing demand in the market for high-quality products, FIT is turning to the 3D printing solutions offered by EOS. FIT already uses several EOS systems at its FIT Factory, and by the end of this year, the company plans to set up another AM factory, specially designed for industrial 3D printing serial production, to house the five new M400-4 machines.
EOS will also be a strategic supplier to FIT, which plans to use the new systems to make products for industries including aerospace, medical technology, and automotive.
“I am delighted that over 20 years of successful collaboration between EOS and FIT AG in the field of Additive Manufacturing of polymer parts are now being extended to include metal components,” said Dr. Adrian Keppler, CEO of EOS GmbH. “Carl Fruth of FIT AG is one of the most experienced pioneers in 3D printing manufacturing. We are therefore proud that he has placed his trust in EOS when it comes to establishing his AM factories. The investment in five EOS M 400-4 systems shows that our solutions are ideally suitable for an integrated large-scale AM production scenario.”
The metal M400-4 system has a large build platform of 400 x 400 x 400 mm for manufacturing metal components on an industrial scale, and its four lasers offer high part quality and increased productivity. FIT plans to automate its processes, and hopes to ramp up its manufacturing capacity by increasing “the diversity of the materials it can process in-house.”
Speaking of materials, the specialized 3D printing group of leading global chemicals and plastics distributor Nexeo Solutions has launched new 3D printing copolyester filaments, based on advanced Amphora 3D polymers by specialty chemical company Eastman.
Shawn Williams, SVP Plastics at Nexeo Solutions, explained, “Expanding the portfolio to copolyester-based materials, the most widely used in 3D printing, allows our customers access to a wider range of quality filaments created from world-class thermoplastic producers.”
Using Amphora polymers to make filaments increases the overall performance of 3D printed prototypes. Nexeo’s new transparent copolyester filaments, which are low-odor and free of styrene, are made with Amphora AM3300 and Amphora HT5300. The first, Amphora 3300, has excellent flow properties, along with low warping, good finishing, advanced overhang ability, and a large operational temperature up to 75° C.
Amphora HT5300 is based on Eastman’s Tritan copolyester, free of BPA and perfect for applications that need temperature resistance of up to 100°C. The material has high levels of toughness, durability, and dimensional stability, and allows for precise dimensions of 3D printing – Amphora HT5300 is a good choice for industrial designers or injection molders who need solutions for both durable parts and functional prototyping.
North Carolina-based 3D filament and supply company MakeShaper, a subsidiary of aftermarket imaging supplier and manufacturer Static Control Components, has also introduced two new 3D printing filament materials.
Its new Nylon filament is available for $55 in both 1.75 and 2.85 mm diameters, and is currently only available in a natural white color. Nylon is a popular 3D printing material due to its strength and durability, along with its chemical resistance and minimal flexibility. Nylon is often used in industrial, aviation, and automotive applications.
MakeShaper also released Acrylonitrile Styrene Acrylate (ASA) filament, available in 1.75 mm diameter only. Just as MakeShaper’s nylon filament is only available in white, ASA is only available in black, though you can contact MakeShaper if you need custom colors. Because it is highly resistant to UV rays and is able to hold up under weather elements, ASA filament is perfect for outdoor 3D printing projects; in addition, it also holds shape and color over lengths of time better than many other 3D printing materials. One kg of ASA filament runs $45, and 2.25 kg is $90. All MakeShaper filaments come in a vacuum-sealed moisture barrier bag with a desiccant.
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