In this edition of Sliced, the news digest of the 3D printing industry, we report on the latest business developments, partnerships and acquisitions in the field of additive manufacturing.
Today’s edition includes multiple 3D printing partnerships, new 3D printing powders and filaments, and a material data optimization project call that ends with a cute 3D print.
Read on for the latest updates from IAM 3D HUB, Renishaw, InterPRO, Imaginarium, Nanoe, Sugar Lab, and more.
Adapter for medical bioreactor systems, developed and printed by InterPRO and Henkel with Loctite 3843 black. Image via InterPRO.
New 3D printing partnerships for GE Additive, Henkel and IAM 3D Hub
This week starts with the announcement that India’s largest rapid prototyping and manufacturing center, Imaginarium, has joined GE Additive’s global distributor network as an official distributor in India. Imaginarium will resell GE’s portfolio of metal powders and metal additive manufacturing machines equipped with GE’s Direct Metal Laser Melting (DMLM) and Electron Beam Melting (EBM) technologies.
Meanwhile, global chemical company Henkel and additive manufacturing service bureau InterPRO are expanding their collaboration to advance the adoption of 3D printing for the manufacture of industrial parts. The companies have already worked together for the past two years to test new materials, integrate new applications, and perform covert production work for DLP (digital light processing) technologies.
“We are pleased to announce the expansion of our collaboration with InterPRO,” said Dr. Simon Mawson, Senior Vice President and Global Head of 3D Printing at Henkel. “With decades of development experience, InterPRO has extensive knowledge of introducing additive manufacturing in order to reduce the time and costs involved in developing, testing and manufacturing new products.”
The IAM 3D HUB digital innovation center has expanded its facility with the latest metal 3D printing model from global engineering firm Renishaw. Equipped with four 500 W high-power lasers, the RenAM 500Q replaces the AM 250 and AM 400 models in order to enable more precise build rates that are up to four times faster than the previous systems.
The new equipment will be integrated into IAM 3D HUB’s recently expanded facilities, which are now nearly 800 square feet. The hub has also expanded its fleet of HP Multi Jet Fusion 3D printers.
The RenAM 500Q will replace the AM 250 and AM 400 models at the IAM 3D HUB. Image via Renishaw.
New 3D printing materials
Canadian additive manufacturing powder maker Equispheres has launched three new lines of high-performance aluminum powders designed for improved strength, printing precision and printing speed. The new powders are variations of Equispheres ‘original AlSi10Mg atomized aluminum alloy powder and are called Equispheres’ Performance, Equispheres Precision, and Equispheres Production.
The Performance Powder is designed to increase the strength and performance of printed parts for a wide variety of applications, while the Precision Powder is designed for applications that require fine properties and details. The production powder is designed to reduce the cost per part produced and enable fast printing without sacrificing mechanical performance.
“Equispheres’ unique proprietary atomization process is carefully controlled and can be precisely managed,” said Dr. Conlon, CTO at Equispheres. “Powder characteristics such as PSD (particle size distribution), morphology and chemistry can be optimized in order to achieve a specific behavior in the laser melting process and meet defined application requirements.”
Equispheres unique powder particles made of aluminum alloy, enlarged to 100 μm. Image over equispheres.
Another new addition to the 3D printing material scene is the latest filament from French industrial group Nanoe, H13 Zetamix Filament. H13 is a high temperature resistant steel known for its favorable ductility, thermal and electrical conductivity and corrosion resistance. In combination with Zetamix technology, the filament is designed for the production of on-demand tools or complex steel parts.
The H13 Zetamix filament is compatible with all FFF 3D printers and requires a thermal post-process in a tube furnace to achieve a density of more than 90 percent.
The H13 Zetamix filament is compatible with all FFF 3D printers. Image via nanoe.
America Makes launches new project call focusing on material data
US national accelerator America Makes has announced two new Rapid Innovation Calls (RICs) to streamline additive manufacturing materials data and further qualification and certification efforts within the supply chain. The RICs are valued at $ 100,000, funded by the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), the Directorate of Materials and Manufacturing, and the Department of Manufacturing and Basic Industrial Technology. You will attempt to develop a searchable and scalable materials database, using data from more than 75 America power projects.
“Both of the RIC topics today address different areas that focus on leveraging data to provide a fuller and deeper understanding of AM materials, processes and qualification, leading to the creation of critical reference standards for AM products said Brandon Ribic, America power technology director.
To qualify for RIC participants, they must be America Makes members. The submission deadline is February 8th at 5:00 p.m. EDT. Project awards will be announced on February 22nd and an informational webinar on the RICs will be held on January 27th at 2pm EDT.
Sintavia adds M4K-4 printers to its missile manufacturing capabilities
Metal 3D printing service Sintavia has integrated two M4K-4-3D printers from the EOS Group’s AMCM company to expand the development and manufacture of rocket thrust chambers for the commercial space sector. The M4K-4 is a stretched version of the EOS M400-4 3D printer. It uses four 1 kW lasers to print individual components measuring 45 x 45 x 100 cm and can print an entire thrust chamber assembly as a unit. The printers will be shipped in June and July this year.
“Since purchasing our first M400-4 three years ago, Sintavia has devoted tremendous resources to developing successful and repeatable operating methods for quad laser printing of extremely thin walls such as those found in the thrust chamber of a rocket,” said Sintavia Brian Neff , CEO of Sintavia. “We now have eight M400-4 quad laser printers and we expect the successful strategies of the M400-4 to work on these new MK-4s as well.
“We are excited to be the first rocket printer in North America to offer our commercial space customers the expanded footprint of the M4K-4.”
End up on something sweet
Just in time for Valentine’s Day, the 3D confectionery start-up Sugar Lab has announced a new line of 3D-printed chocolate truffles and candies. The company worked with chef Melissa Walnock from the Culinary Institute of America to develop the chocolate ganache recipes, which are then wrapped in 3D printed chocolate shells. Sugar Lab’s 3D-printed Valentine line also offers candy, cupcake decorations, cocktail sets, and pastry trays that customers can fill with mousse or ice cream.
“3D printing gives our customers so much flexibility,” said Kyle von Hasseln, co-founder and CEO of Sugar Lab. “We can make complex and beautiful foods that really have to be seen to be believed. Equally important, 3D printing allows for quick design iteration without the need for shapes. This means that we can quickly add a product that is unique to each customer and personalize existing designs. “
Just in time for Valentine’s Day, Sugar Lab is launching a new line of 3D printed chocolate truffles and candies. Image via Sugar Lab.
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The pictured image shows Sugar Lab’s new line of 3D printed chocolate truffles and candies with the SLICED logo.