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3D Printing News Briefs: February 12, 2020

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In today’s 3D Printing News Briefs, we’ve got materials news, then some collaborations and an education story to share. First, KRAIBURG TPE is examining if its thermoplastic elastomers are suitable for 3D printing use, and Formatec is expanding its capacity with ceramics 3D printing. ZVerse and Forecast 3D are partnering up, while STELIA Aerospace is starting a collaborative research project in Canada. Aidro has announced the closing of its Joint Industry Projects for 3D printed part guidelines in the Oil&Gas and Maritime industries. Finally, the YSoft be3D eDee solution is coming to educators in North America.

KRAIBURG TPE Testing Suitability of TPEs for AM Use

The results of extensive testing by KRAIBURG TPE show that its thermoplastic elastomers, or TPEs, can be processed with great results on Pollen AM‘s pellet additive manufacturing (PAM) system. The French company’s granule 3D printers, which are loaded with bottles filled with pellets of raw materials like TPEs, are able to fabricate very detailed surfaces, even when using super-soft TPEs, and can also process up to four materials at once. This allows hard-soft multicomponent composites made from TPEs to combine with plastics like ABS and PP. KRAIBURG TPE and Pollen AM worked together to perform joint tests, and the results were pretty good – the prints had mechanical properties that can achieve up to 50% of the values that injection moldings can produce.

“Our PAM printers ensure the shortest possible residence times to avoid affecting the specific advantages of soft elastomers. This also ensures excellent peel strength, particularly for multicomponent applications with thermoplastic elastomers in the low Shore hardness range,” said Didier Fonta, Head of Operations at Pollen AM.

Formatec Adding In-House Ceramic 3D Printing to Production Services

Admatec product 3D printed ceramics

Dutch CIM, MIM and 3D printed products manufacturer Formatec is expanding its production services portfolio by adding in-house ceramics 3D printing. This material has excellent material properties which are equivalent to Ceramic Injection Molding (CIM); combine this with the reduced labor, time, and cost that 3D printing offers, this is a smart move on Formatec’s part. The company now offers five different ways to shape ceramics, so its customers can choose which one will best fit its particular need.

“With our team we can offer our customers added value through our extensive knowledge and experience with ceramics as a CIM pioneer. This combined with the almost endless possibilities that 3D printing offers we are excited for the opportunities that lie ahead,” said Formatec General Manager René Bult.

ZVerse and Forecast 3D Partnering for CAD as a Service

Forecast 3D and ZVerse Inc., which developed the only CAD as a Service (CADaaS) platform for digital manufacturing, are partnering up. As a result, Forecast 3D customers can now enjoy direct access to the platform through the company’s website, and ZVerse’s AI-enabled system, and network of 3D designers, are also readily available as well. The CADaaS will be able to provide manufacturable files for any of Forecast 3D’s processes at the necessary scale.

Customers often hit roadblocks to manufacturing when their files are not manufacture-ready,” explained ZVerse founder and CEO John Carrington. “ZVerse will complement Forecast 3D’s in-house design team, making it even easier for customers to quickly get 100% guaranteed manufacturable 3D files. Forecast 3D has long been at the forefront of adopting new technology. We are pleased that our CADaaS platform is now among the solutions offered to its customers.”

STELIA Aerospace Beginning Collaborative R&T Research Project

STELIA Aerospace, through its two Canadian Subsidiaries, has just begun a collaborative research project with plane and train manufacturer BOMBARDIER called the AILE project, or Aile Intelligent and Light Wing for Environment. This project, which is supported by the Québec government, is part of the third phase of the mobilizing project to create an eco-friendly aircraft SA2GE-3. In this three-year partnership, STELIA will work to fabricate a high-lift trailing edge flap, made of thermoplastic composite materials, that will serve as a test bed for BOMBARDIER. STELIA is backed in this project by FusiA Impression 3D Metal Inc, which will help with production and design of 3D printed metal hinges, and existing partner the CNRC (Conseil National de Recherches du Canada), which will help with the materials aspect.

“This new project with BOMBARDIER highlights our wish to build strong links with our customer and will enable us to pursue our skill development strategy, while developing our footprint in Canada in terms of Research & Technology,” said Cédric GAUTIER, the CEO of STELIA Aerospace.

Aidro Announces the Close of AM Qualification JIPs

The participants of JIPs celebrate the official release of guidelines, at the DNV GL office in Høvik, Norway

Recently, 20 partner companies, including Shell, Additive Industries, Siemens, Sandvik, BP, Aidro Hydraulics & 3D Printing, and many more, gathered to celebrate the official closing of Joint Innovation Projects, or JIPs, regarding the qualification of AM in the oil & gas & maritime industries, and the official release of these guidelines. The companies worked for two years, and the resulting aligned JIPs were concluded, through the coordination of Berenschot and DNV GL. The goal was to come up with guidelines on how to qualify 3D printed parts made with the laser powder bed fusion (LPMF) and Wire Arc Additive Manufacturing (WAAM) technologies, and develop an economic model, for these industries.

Real parts were 3D printed as case studies during the JIPs in order to, as Aidro put it, “ensure the development of a high-quality guideline that is in tune with realistic manufacturing practices.” One example is a Crank Disk, which Aidro 3D printed with LPBF technology for Kongsberg in less than a week on an EOS M290 3D printer. The guideline provides a quality assurance methodology for these two AM processes, and parts are now divided into three categories, depending on the consequences of possible part failure. DNV GL closed the celebration by launching two new JIPs, which will continue investigating additive manufacturing.

YSoft be3D eDee 3D Printing Solution Comes to North America

For the first time, workflow solutions provider Y Soft is making its YSoft be3D eDee 3D printing solution available to educators in North America. This solution includes 3D/2D SafeQ print management software, filaments, DeeControl layering software, free access to the teacher-tested YSoft be3D Academy, and the eDee 3D printer, which is enclosed for the safety of students. The printer is also secure, providing alerts and sending students an email when their print job is done, so it doesn’t have to be locked away by a teacher, but rather can be shared in an open area in the school, like the library.

“We are excited to offer the YSoft be3D eDee solution to teachers and educators here in North America. We know that creating a unique hands-on, immersive learning experience sparks ideas and makes education more fun. When students are more engaged, their motivation for learning increases, the quality of teaching improves,” said Elke Heiss, Chief Marketing Officer, Y Soft.

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