Widely recognized as environmentally responsible, 3D printing is a versatile manufacturing technique that enables less energy and raw material usage than traditional production methods. Significant R&D has been invested across the industry with the aim of reducing the carbon footprint of the materials used in 3D printing. To date, the most sustainable 3D filaments have been largely based on a Glycol-modified version of Polyethylene Terephthalate (PETG), which has limited properties and has confined use cases to dimensional models and dummies.
UBQ Materials converts unsorted landfill-destined waste into a sustainable, climate-positive, and cost-competitive thermoplastic (UBQ) that substitutes oil-based resins for manufacturing. Plastics App has developed UBQ inside filaments, which, when applied to 3D printing, expand the sustainable application to functional uses such as jigs, fixtures, and spare parts.
“Combining our end-to-end filament development capabilities with UBQ’s climate-positive material has opened sustainable opportunities for industries like automotive and housing, where fully functional prototyping is an essential part of both R&D and small-scale production”, said Dr. Yanir Shaked, Founder & General Manager of Plastics App. “Using eco-conscious material to 3D-print functional prototypes from the early stages of development helps companies meet their sustainability goals without compromising on product functionality”.
UBQ has already been adopted by large multinational enterprises, having been incorporated into end products across various industries. Now that the material is being used to create prototypes, manufacturers can better match the look, feel, and performance of these prototypes with their end products.
“Introducing 3D-printing filaments to the market enables UBQ to test the limits and go beyond the boundaries of traditional plastic manufacturing techniques,” said Tato Bigio, co-founder, and CEO of UBQ Materials. “The versatile applications of UBQ allow for its incorporation into a wide range of products, decreasing emissions and preventing landfill buildup. This partnership will expand the scope of companies that can refine their processes while reducing their energy use”.
UBQ will be incorporated into four types of carbon-reduced sustainable filaments. Perform Q is a high-performance, UBQ/Polypropylene filament suitable for standard applications; Perform QCF, which has Carbon Fibers, is a reinforced UBQ/Polypropylene-based filament suitable for demanding applications. Both grades are available either on virgin PP or PCR PP carriers.