Mar 13, 2017 | By Julia
Admatec Europe BV, the Dutch company best known for its ceramic 3D printers, has joined forces with the Energy Research Centre of the Netherlands (ECN) to launch a new state-of-the-art metal 3D printer: the ADMETALFLEX. The new heavy-duty 3D printer is the latest addition to the ADMAFLEX series, and promises to deliver high-quality metal printed components, low surface roughness values, perfected features, and no residual stresses. Admatec and ECN will preview the 3D printer at the Additive Manufacturing User Group conference in Chicago later this March.
Michiel de Bruijcker, Managing Director of Admatec, noted that with the new ADMETALFLEX, his company is underscoring a strong cooperation with the Dutch energy specialists ECN, and an increased dedication to push their 3D printer line to a broader market. “Pulling off this task will strengthen Admatec’s market position as a leading additive manufacturing brand,” de Bruijcker said in a statement.
While the jump from ceramic 3D printing to metal additive manufacturing may seem like unchartered territory, producing both materials requires comprehensive knowledge of powder metallurgy, which Admatec has evidenced time and again.
Company representatives confirm that it was always Admatec’s aim to launch this new 3D metal printer. “High-material quality combined with form freedom and fine product details were the goal of our development,” said ECN Director of Engineering and Materials Jaco Saurwalt. “By improving both the process as well as the machine, the current ADMATEC ceramics printing technology has been extended to high-density metals.”
The ADMETALFLEX’s operating principles revolve around Digital Light Processing (DLP), as seen with previous Admatec releases such as the ADMAFLEX 130 ceramic printer. DLP is unique in its involvement of filled photosensitive resin, but the new 3D printer has the added combination of debinding and sintering processes.
With its new 3D printer, Admatec aims to satisfy the increasing market demand for high-precision, high-performing metal components that are relatively small in size. With that in mind, the new ADMETALFLEX will 3D print metal components that have been, up until now, manufactured by traditional shaping technologies like CNC machining or metal injection molding.
The ADMETALFLEX 3D printer matches the 96 x 52 x 120 mm build volume of the ADMAFLEX 130, and can print layer heights as fine as 10 microns with an x, y resolution of 50 microns. The minimum feature size for parts printed on the ADMETALFLEX is 0.3 to 0.4 mm, and the 3D printer comes with an optional integrated process control feature.
Beyond matters of Admatec’s product line expansion, the new 3D printer release is significant in a broader way as well, as it demonstrates that 3D printed metals are continuing to soar. And with ceramics leader Admatec coming in as the latest 3D printing company to tap into this burgeoning field, it seems as though, now more than ever, no holds are barred in the race for high-quality, effective 3D metal printing.
Posted in 3D Printer
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