Regardless of their categorization as “metallic” 3D printers, ExOne binder jetting techniques are sometimes used to 3D print technical ceramics. Utilizing the identical established course of as metallic 3D printing, binder jet combines the design freedom and manufacturability benefits of additive manufacturing with the excessive temperature stability, excessive hardness, resistance to chemical reactions or oxidation, and biocompatibility of quite a lot of technical ceramics.
Preferrred for a variety of purposes, ceramics like silicon carbide (SiC) are sometimes troublesome to course of with conventional manufacturing strategies. In truth, even some additive processes battle to course of technical ceramics.
Binder jetting is uniquely positioned to course of complicated designs in silicon carbide. The darkish powder gained’t treatment for UV-based strategies and its excessive melting level eliminates laser-based applied sciences. Components are sometimes simply infiltrated for exact properties and offering close to internet form components reduces troublesome and costly demolding or machining steps. Ceramic initiatives at the moment already assist producers scale back lead occasions by weeks and simplify provide chains with out costly tooling.
Saint-Gobain Analysis North America Scaling Ceramic 3D Printing
Saint-Gobain is the worldwide chief in modern ceramics. The 3D printing workforce at Saint-Gobain Analysis North America in Northborough, Massachusetts, identifies use circumstances the place additive manufacturing can enhance manufacturing or product efficiency, in addition to advance using 3D printing for supplies throughout the firm’s portfolio.
With two completely different ExOne binder jetting machines, the workforce is forging the trail to industrial adoption of extra environment friendly, extra sustainable designs by way of ceramic supplies analysis and software improvement.
“We see binder jetting as a extremely scalable know-how, which is clearly essential if the method is for use for business manufacturing,” stated Nicholas Orf, Principal Scientist and Additive Manufacturing Group Chief at Saint-Gobain Analysis North America.
Saint-Gobain invested in its first ExOne binder jetting machine, an Innovent, in 2018. The pliability of the machine allowed the workforce to carry out analysis on quite a lot of its ceramic supplies. To additional advance the preliminary supplies analysis into production-ready purposes, the corporate added an X1 25Pro in 2020.
The 2-machine setup at Saint-Gobain takes benefit of the flexibility of the Innovent as a multi-purpose device and the elevated capability of the X1 25 Professional for industrial adoption.
“With the ability to reveal scalability is essential,” Orf stated. “We’ve used the Innovent for years for prototyping ideas for a number of of our companies. Extra not too long ago, we’ve been critically specializing in scaling just a few of probably the most promising product designs and assume we can deal with the yearly half manufacturing on the X1 25Pro.”
Obtain the whole case examine to find out how the Saint-Gobain Analysis North America workforce makes use of binder jetting to discover new additive manufacturing purposes using the corporate’s supplies similar to alumina, zirconia, and silicon carbide, amongst different high-performance ceramics.