Apr 10, 2017 | By Tess
Shimifrez Inc., a Canadian manufacturer of thin metal parts, has received a reported $750,000 in funding from additive manufacturing accelerator program Canada Makes through the latter’s Metal Additive Demonstration Program. The funding will allow Shimifrez to create eight new jobs at its new facility in Vaughan, Ontario, and will contribute to accelerating its photo chemical etching and electroforming technologies, used to manufacture thin copper parts.
E-formed Evaporation Mask
(Image: Shimifrez Inc.)
Shimifrez Inc. is primarily known for its electroforming and photochemical etching processes, which enable the creation of flexible and thin metal components. Electroforming, for those not familiar, is a process wherein a negative replica of a part is made using a mandrel (or “master surface”). More specifically, electroforming consists of using an electrolytic bath to deposit metal onto a conductive patterned surface, similar to electroplating. The plated metal (whose thickness can be adjusted) can then be removed from the mandrel, resulting in a thin, detailed metal component.
The electroforming process offers many manufacturing advantages, including a high level of repeatability and the capacity to create complexly structured parts thanks to the very high resolution of the conductive patterned substrate.
Precision photochemical etching, for its part, is a cost-effective technique used to manufacture flat and complex metal parts for prototyping and quantity production. The process used by Shimifrez, which uses CAD designs, has removed the necessity for hard tooling (and the cost that accompanies it) and has allowed for flat metal parts to be produced more quickly and accurately.
With the Canada Makes funding, Shimifrez will be able to increase its production of electroformed and photochemical etched copper parts, which boast tolerances of +/1 um. “The Metal Additive Demonstration Program goal is to develop a world-class supply chain of companies," said Frank Defalco, Manager Canada Makes. "Canada Makes is pleased to see Shimifrez expanding its operations to help achieve the goal.”
Hassan Nojoumi, President of Shimifrez Inc., added: “Canada Makes assistance helped Shimifrez take a big step in developing our capabilities to deliver rapid-response service for micro components to several precision industries such as the aerospace/satellite, Medical, Automotive, Telecommunications and micro-electronics sectors. We recognized that there’s a major market gap, for accurate, flexible and cost effective thin metal components and services, new advanced technologies and investments in state-of-the-art capital equipment are lowering production costs, increasing productivity and allowing for the creation of new innovative products.”
Shimifrez’s additive manufacturing processes enable faster turnaround times, as well as lower production costs, which make them especially suitable for prototyping medium to large production quantities. With the capability to manufacturing parts as small as 0.02 x 0.02 inches (2 x 2 mm) in dimension and with features sizes of less than 15 microns, Shimifrez is equipped to address the growing demand for thin metal parts (between 0.01 mm and 1 mm) with complex and accurate features.
Micro Flat Rotor (1 cm diameter)
(Image: Shimifrez Inc.)
The $750K in funding came from Canada Makes’ Metal Additive Manufacturing Demonstration Program, which was established to promote and increase awareness about additive manufacturing technologies to Canadian businesses and industries.
Posted in 3D Printer Company
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