ExOne‘s binder jetting technology is at the center of a series of manufacturing research projects led by Pennsylvania universities. Five of the projects have recently received funding through the Manufacturing PA Innovation Program. The funding comes from a total of $2.8 million that was awarded through the Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) to 43 projects across the state aimed at advancing manufacturing technologies.
“The Manufacturing PA program is helping ExOne to expand our research and development efforts in important ways with the assistance of Pennsylvania’s outstanding universities and other technology companies,” said John Hartner, CEO of ExOne. “The projects funded by this program will help ExOne unlock the commercial and sustainability value that binder jet 3D printing has to offer, such as delivering lighter weight vehicles that are more fuel-efficient as well as all-new innovations.”
ExOne’s binder jetting systems, which are compatible with over 20 metal, ceramic and composite materials, are some of the most researched in the field of binder jetting. The company’s close collaboration with research institutions has been mutually beneficial, and has helped the company to advance and refine its strategies, materials and processes.
“We strongly value our relationships with the academic R&D community, and we appreciate their support enhancing our competitiveness and advancing this important 3D printing field,” Hartner added. “We congratulate our partners and all of the other universities and companies receiving Manufacturing PA Innovation funding.”
The five binder jetting research projects that have received funding are:
- “Binder Jet 3D Printing from Powder Produced by Metal Attrition”: A Carnegie Mellon University project that seeks to optimize binder jet printing parameters and densification of irregularly shaped powder particles, including powders experiencing attrition.
- “Optimal Parts Consolidation and Structural Redesign for Additive Manufacturing to Reduce Weight, Production Costs, and Lifecycle Fuel Use”: A project led by Carnegie Mellon researchers in cooperation with Kennametal and Ansys. It aims to develop a software tool that automatically identifies components and subsystems for consolidation and optimization with binder jet 3D printing. The idea is that users can simply upload a CAD file of a large-scale system and the software will conduct its analysis, resulting in minimized production costs and optimized part production.
- “Advanced Manufacturing of Ceramics for PA Industries”: A Pennsylvania State University project that is developing a new class of ceramic materials for binder jetting technology. These materials will have a combination of high-temperature stability, corrosion resistance and toughness.
- “A Computational Tool for Simulating the Sintering Behavior in Binder Jet Additive Manufacturing”: A project spearheaded by the University of Pittsburgh in collaboration with Ansys that is developing a computational tool for simulating the deformation and porosity caused in the sintering of binder jetted parts made from 316L stainless steel.
- “Wetting of Binder Solution on Porous Bed of Microparticles”: A project from Villanova University that is investigating the optimal way to apply wet binder to porous particles and is creating guidelines for this form of binder jet 3D printing.
The five binder jetting research projects will ultimately help ExOne to address and resolve challenges associated with printing irregular and porous powders, as well as advance part identification for their binder jetting technologies.