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Fraunhofer IFAM adds metal FFF Fusion Factory to ICAM site

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Germany’s Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Technology and Advanced Materials (IFAM) has installed a new metal-based 3D printing solution at its facility which will enable it to strengthen its position as an AM partner. The new system is the Fusion Factory developed by XERION BERLIN LABORATORIES (in cooperation with Fraunhofer IFAM Dresden), a production system capable of metal or ceramic 3D printing.

Back in 2018, we spoke to the head of R&D at XERION, Siddharth Tiwari, about the company’s innovative system and were able to get a comprehensive idea as to how the technology works. In short, the Fusion Factory consists of three modules, which cover the printing, debinding and densification (heat treatment) processes in a single machine. The system, designed to be used with metal or ceramic filaments, is also modular: additional 3D printing modules can be integrated to scale up production.

Fusion Factory Fraunhoder IFAM
Dr. Thomas Weißgärber (left) and Prof. Dr. Bernd Kieback (right) at the inauguration of the Innovation Center Additive Manufacturing ICAM at Fraunhofer IFAM in Dresden in March 2019

The Fusion Factory will complement Fraunhofer IFAM’s existing AM capabilities at its Innovation Center Additive Manufacturing (ICAM), which also houses a range of other AM systems, including selective electron beam melting, three-dimensional screen printing, fused filament fabrication and 3D stencil printing. The site brings together the institute’s various AM technologies and facilitates the development of tailor-made solutions for its partners.

The research institute will utilize XERION’s technology to implement new filament materials and to support project partners as they explore the adoption of AM. Fraunhofer IFAM will also be working to advance the system technology and improve the Fusion Factory’s process chain for optimal industrial production. The metallic FFF system will offer a resource-efficient process capable of a high degree of design freedom. Parts printed using the Fusion Factory can also integrate open or closed porosities, which Fraunhofer IFAM says creates exciting new opportunities for bionic perspectives.

Fraunhofer IFAM will also be offering training sessions and information events for the Fusion Factory system, including an industrial workshop, “Additive metallic filament printing for practical use”, held at its site in Dresden on January 21, 2021.

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Tess Boissonneault

Tess Boissonneault is a Montreal-based content writer and editor with five years of experience covering the additive manufacturing world. She has a particular interest in amplifying the voices of women working within the industry and is an avid follower of the ever-evolving AM sector. Tess holds a master's degree in Media Studies from the University of Amsterdam.

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