Saint-Gobain is a global leader in innovative ceramics. The company designs manufacture and distribute a variety of technical ceramics using advanced manufacturing to develop innovative solutions in a variety of sectors. Its ceramics businesses have an unmatched range of ceramic processing technologies to solve customer challenges, including binder jet 3D printing. With two different ExOne machines, Saint-Gobain Research North America is forging the path to industrial adoption of more efficient, more sustainable designs through ceramic materials research and application development.
The R&D organization at Saint-Gobain comprises local teams dedicated to specific businesses, as well as a network of eight Transversal R&D centers that serve all the businesses of Saint-Gobain worldwide. These Transversal centers are knowledge hubs to develop new capabilities for the company to utilize in the future. Saint-Gobain Research North America, located in Northborough, Massachusetts, is one such Transversal R&D center and home to a 3D printing team dedicated to improving the production or performance of Saint-Gobain products via additive manufacturing, as well as advancing the use of 3D printing for technical ceramics within the Saint-Gobain portfolio.
“The team is a centralized service for all Saint-Gobain business,” said Nick Orf, Additive Manufacturing Group Leader. “We work closely with our business unit colleagues to identify where Saint-Gobain materials can be used in the 3D printing industry, where can we use the technology to develop new products internally, and where we can connect our business with startups and manufacturers in the AM space.”
Using ExOne binder jet 3D printing, Saint-Gobain works to develop innovative new products and create a more efficient manufacturing process. “We see binder jetting as a highly scalable technology, which is obviously very important if the process is to be used for commercial production,” Orf said.
Saint-Gobain invested in its first ExOne binder jetting machine, an Innovent, in 2018. To further advance the initial technical ceramics materials research into production-ready applications, the company added an X1 25Pro in 2020.
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