In this edition of Sliced, the 3D printing industry news digest, we cover the latest business developments, partnerships and acquisitions in the additive manufacturing sector.
Today’s edition features several new 3D printing partnerships, material qualifications, 3D printer updates, and how an aerospace company is taking steps to win the space race.
Read on for the latest updates from SLM Solutions, BASF, SISMA, Usmih, Velo3D, Farsoon Technologies, and more.
New 3D printing partnerships with TRUMPF, Sinterit and Photocentric
German machine tool maker kicks off this week’s partnership updates TRUMPF, which has taken over its additive manufacturing joint venture with the Italian 3D printer developer ISSMA. First announced in November, the now-closed deal sees TRUMPF take full control of TRUMPF SISMA SRL, the Laser Metal Fusion (LMF) 3D printing business it founded alongside SISMA.
Going forward, TRUMPF will continue LMF’s business activities in the industrial, dental and medical markets as TRUMPF Additive Manufacturing Italia, with its headquarters remaining in Schio, northern Italy. SISMA, on the other hand, will focus on the jewelry and fashion industries and distribute TRUMPF’s LMF machines in these markets.
Meanwhile, the Polish 3D printer manufacturer sintered announced a new partnership with Before AM, the 3D printing arm of a global chemical company BASF. The two companies will work together to jointly develop SLS 3D printing materials, hardware and industrial applications.
“A prerequisite for a strong increase in the potential of this technology is new applications that can be opened up by the materials”, Konrad Glowacki, co-founder of Sinterit responsible for product management. “In cooperation with BASF Forward AM materials, Sinterit will introduce ready-to-use materials with the Lisa and NILS ranges.”
Elsewhere, 3D printer and material manufacturer Photocentric has partnered with Ukrainian dental aligner specialist Usmih to develop an innovative 3D printing process for manufacturing dental aligners. While the two companies are tight-lipped about how the method works, we know it will take advantage of Photocentric’s LC Magna printers and resins in tandem with a conveyor belt process to quickly cure aligner models. According to Usmih, the process will be ready for full production by the start of the first quarter of 2022.
“The production of clear aligners remains one of the fastest growing areas of 3D printing today, and together with Usmih, we are working to transform the efficiency and reliability of its internal process from start to finish. the end,” said Sally Tipping, Sales. Director at Photocentric.
“Usmih was able to draw on our extensive expertise spanning hardware, materials and industry knowledge, to deliver a solution that has the potential to deliver compelling benefits to his already successful business.”
Desktop Metal and Velo3D material updates
Now let’s move on to the materials and manufacturer of binder jet 3D printers Metal desk introduced a new high strength stainless steel alloy for its production system platform, named DM HH Stainless Steel. Combining high strength and hardness with corrosion resistance, the alloy will allow users to produce large-scale DM HH-SS components for industries such as oil and gas, automotive, consumer products and medical devices.
Notably, DM H-SS combines the tensile strength, ductility and corrosion resistance of 13-8 PH stainless steel with the added benefit of improved hardness comparable to low tolerance steels such as 4140, making it an ideal choice for injection tool core and cavity applications where millions of injection strokes per year are required. With the addition of DM HH-SS, Desktop Metal’s production system can now print 10 qualified metal materials.
Meanwhile, the metal 3D printer manufacturer Bike3D has qualified Amperprint 0233 Haynes 282 nickel-based superalloy powder for use in its Sapphire 3D printers. Produced by the world’s leading producer of metal powder Hoganas and under license from Haynes International, the powder is designed for high creep resistance, thermal stability, weldability and manufacturability not commonly found in other alloys, according to Velo3D.
The properties of the powder make it ideal for high temperature structural applications in power generation, such as gas turbines, and for building heat exchangers, combustors, nozzles, rocket engines and wheels for space launchers. Oklahoma-based contract manufacturer Duncan Machine Products will be the first to use a Sapphire system with the new superalloy.
“It’s inspiring to see what engineers have been able to build using Höganäs metal powders and Velo3D’s unsupported additive manufacturing process,” said Jerome Stanley, Höganäs Global Sales Director, Customization Technologies. “The first parts printed with our Amperprint 0233 Haynes 282 powder are impressive, and I think customers are only scratching the surface of what is possible with this superalloy.
“The powder, combined with Velo3D’s end-to-end metal additive manufacturing solution, is an extremely effective combination for consolidating parts into monolithic structures to eliminate the coefficient of thermal expansion in large, high-performance systems.”
Freemelt receives a second order in the United States
Business news now, and Swedish manufacturer of metal 3D printers free melt received a second order from the United States for its Freemelt ONE system. The University of Texas at El Paso will use the system to conduct materials research, which will be delivered in the first quarter of 2022.
“The acquisition of the Freemelt ONE open-source electron beam powder bed fusion system will expand the existing capabilities of the WM Keck Center for 3D Innovation at UTEP, to propel research into various aspects of additive manufacturing, including including new materials and surveillance, and fostering opportunities for students to engage in research experiments,” said César A. Terrazas-Nájera, assistant research professor at the University of Texas at El Paso.
BCN3D introduces self-calibration of 3D printers
FDM 3D printer manufacturer based in Barcelona BCN3D introduced auto-calibration to its 3D printers, reducing calibration time for customers by 85%. The company’s new electronics control a piezoelectric sensor that detects pressure to accurately measure the exact distance between the nozzle tip and the print surface, while ensuring perfect XY alignment for the dual extrusion system of the printer.
BCN3D also announced that its Metal Pack is now available for purchase, allowing customers to create stainless steel parts in three steps, and its latest material addition, a CF15 PET fiber-filled filament.
Farsoon’s Flight technology reduces molded fiber tooling costs
3D printer manufacturer Farsoon Technologies revealed that its Flight technology reduced molded fiber tooling costs by 97% for ERI Packaging, a manufacturer of custom molded fiber products. Farsoon’s flight technology has been deployed to produce a complete set of mold tools for electronics packaging, including mold body, cavity mold and shield mold.
Farsoon’s technology was able to provide improved feature detail over other plastic-based technologies, as well as better surface quality and precision of mold fit, which created a better cleaner molded fiber pulp product. The technology has also enabled faster design iteration, improved production yield, and better efficiency during the design and manufacturing process, proving the technology to be a cost-effective alternative for low-volume production.
Accelerating the space race
This week’s roundup ends with news from the 3D printer manufacturer TDM solutions, which received an order for two of its NXG XII 600 3D printing systems from a leading California-based rocket company. With the purchase of the new systems, the no-name rocket company seeks to make its space missions more affordable and efficient by creating lighter, faster and more robust space parts.
“The NXG XII 600 is a real game changer for the rapidly growing (new) space industry,” said Dr. Simon Merkt-Schippers. “Here, traditional space companies and established players face strong growth and an urgent need for complex parts to win the modern space race. SLM Solutions technology enables more affordable missions through smarter designs that make rocket engines more efficient, taking their performance to the next level.
“There’s probably no faster, more efficient way to explore orbit and emerge triumphant than using the capabilities of the NXG XII 600.”
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Featured image shows Usmih dental aligners with the Sliced logo.