Advanced Materials

The primary objective of additive manufacturing technologies is to enable the production of high performance, more advanced parts, and components. Hence, the development of new and more advanced materials is a core element in the evolution of AM technologies.

It goes both ways: development and optimization of advanced materials for 3D printing enables faster processing and more complex parts to be created; at the same time, the evolution of 3D printing processes depends on optimization of ever more advanced materials for more high-performance parts.

Advanced materials for AM

In general, by advanced materials, the industry refers to all those materials on the fringe of material science. These include composites, high-performance polymers, high-temperature metals and technical ceramics.

Composites used in AM are primarily composites of carbon fiber, glass fiber or Kevlar within a thermoplastic matrix (unlike traditional composites which are in a thermoset matrix). They can be available as powders, pellets or filaments, and generally used chopped fibers (although technologies capable of additively manufacturing continuous fiber composites are in development). However, the definition of composites is extremely broad and can extend to include metal composites, polymer-ceramic composites, and even metal-ceramic composites.

Advanced materials in AM also include high-performance polymers, especially PEEK, PEKK and PEI (ULTEM). These are high temperature, high-stress resistant thermoplastics that melt at temperatures of 400° C. The ability to 3D print using these materials for a number of medical and metal-replacement industrial applications is expected to significantly drive the demand of additive manufacturing.

Advanced materials in ceramic 3D printing are represented primarily by technical ceramics such as alumina (aluminum oxide), zirconia (zirconium oxide) and other non-oxide and silicon-based ceramic materials such as silicon carbide and silicon nitride. These materials offer almost unparalleled properties in terms of heat resistance, strength and lightweight, however, they are difficult to shape using traditional technologies. Which is why they are considered particularly relevant for the future of AM.

The most advanced materials in metal additive manufacturing are refractory metals as well as some metal-ceramic alloys composites. These are extremely high-temperature resistant metals that can withstand temperatures of over 4000° C. The list of 3D printable refractory metals (mainly by powder bed fusion processes) includes tungsten, niobium molybdenum and other metals which can benefit enormously from the geometrical possibilities offered by AM.

Fringe material science

Lastly, 3D printing rapidly became a key technology for the development of entirely new materials categories. These include applications involving graphene and graphene allotropes (the different shapes that graphene can take such as nanotubes or buckyballs), ultra-light or ultra dark or even so-called 4D materials.

Broadly speaking, these are materials that can be programmed to perform a specific action after they have been used for manufacturing an object. Hence they add the “4th dimension” in that the objects continue to evolve through time after the 3D printing process is completed. For example shape-memory materials that can turn back to previous states and shapes, or auto-assembling structures that change shape as they are heated up or cooled down. The list goes on and on and in many cases, 3D printing has proven of key importance in rapidly enabling the testing of new theories in material behavior.

  • Stratasys, a global leader in polymer 3D printing solutions, has selected KIMYA, an ARMOR company, to provide Stratasys Validated materials for its FDM technology-based systems. With the integration of KIMYA materials such as kimya PEKK-SC and Kimya PC-FR into its ecosystem, Stratasys offers its customers a wider range of materials,…

    Read More
  • Kennametal added to GE Additive's Beta Partner Program. Advancing Binder Jet printing capabilities in cemented tungsten carbide.

    GE Additive has added industrial technology leader, Kennametal Inc., as is the latest member of its Beta Partner Program. As part of the GE Additive Program, Kennametal will further advance its Binder Jet printing capabilities in cemented tungsten carbide as it continues to scale its end-to-end metal additive manufacturing solutions,…

    Read More
  • AddUp Solutions and Uniformity Labs to collaborate. On Ti64 Grade 23 titanium alloy production using the FormUp350 L-PBF printer platform.

    Global metal additive manufacturing OEM, AddUp Solutions, and engineered materials company, Uniformity Labs are working together to maximize the productivity of Uniformity’s Ti64 Grade 23 titanium alloy using the AddUp FormUp350 laser powder bed fusion printer. This partnership aims to target regulated healthcare and aerospace production using metal additive manufacturing…

    Read More
  • Stratasys Ltd. (NASDAQ: SSYS), a leader in polymer 3D printing solutions, led off a slew of announcements across AM hardware, materials and software segments with the launch of 16 new materials across three of its AM technologies (SAF, FDM, and Origin P3 photopolymerization). Overall, the new materials include Stratasys Validated…

    Read More
  • The Mechnano Formula1 photopolymer material is now included in the Stratasys Origin P3 OML (Open Material License) Exploratory release on May 10th, 2022. Through its groundbreaking discrete carbon nanotube (DCNT) technology, Mechnano’s Formula1 rigid resin allows Origin One printer owners with an OML to fabricate static-dissipative parts with advanced properties,…

    Read More
  • 3dpbm Advanced Polymers AM Focus 2022 eBook

    In the additive manufacturing industry, advanced materials are really at the core of opening up new high-performance applications and increasing the value proposition of AM. Of course, AM technologies themselves are critical, but there is consensus in the industry and amongst adopters that materials—particularly advanced polymers—are instrumental to driving the…

    Read More
  • NASA innovators have recently developed a new metal alloy, NASA Alloy GRX-810, using a 3D printing process that dramatically improves the strength and durability of the components and parts used in aviation and space exploration, resulting in better and longer-lasting performance. NASA Alloy GRX-810 is an oxide dispersion strengthened (ODS)…

    Read More
  • Fortify, a provider of advanced composite-photopolymer stereolithography 3D printers, launched a new suite of materials for electronics applications. Fortify previously developed the strongest, stiffest, high-temperature photopolymer for tooling applications and is now leveraging the same Digital Composite Manufacturing (DCM) platform to deliver game-changing, best-in-class materials for electronics and RF applications.…

    Read More
  • Cemented carbide 3D printing introduced by Sanvik. The technique is enabled by a unique powder, crafted through a patented process.

    Sandvik continues to expand their additive offering by introducing 3D printed cemented carbide – with superior wear-resistant properties. This is enabled by a unique powder, crafted through a patented process developed by the company’s leading experts along the additive value chain. With 160 years of leading materials expertise and the…

    Read More
  • Arkema to launch new materials for polymer AM at AMUG 2022

    During the upcoming AMUG conference, Belgian materials company Arkema will unveil several new products and strategic partnerships with key players along the value chain to leverage the unique features of additive manufacturing, which are freedom of design and customization, implementation speed and reduced raw materials use. Arkema’s N3xtDimension liquid resins…

    Read More
Back to top button

We use cookies to give you the best online experience and for ads personalisation. By agreeing you accept the use of cookies in accordance with our cookie policy.

Privacy Settings saved!
Privacy Settings

When you visit any web site, it may store or retrieve information on your browser, mostly in the form of cookies. Control your personal Cookie Services here.

These cookies are necessary for the website to function and cannot be switched off in our systems.

In order to use this website we use the following technically required cookies
  • PHPSESSID
  • wordpress_test_cookie
  • wordpress_logged_in_
  • wordpress_sec

Decline all Services
Accept all Services

STAY AHEAD

OF THE CURVE

Join industry leaders and receive the latest insights on what really matters in AM!

This information will never be shared with 3rd parties

I’ve read and accept the privacy policy.*

WELCOME ON BOARD!