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Evonik’s Research Hub In Singapore Launches New Line Of Photopolymers For 3D Printing

Evonik’s Research Hub In Singapore Launches New Line Of Photopolymers For 3D Printing

Evonik has developed two photopolymers for industrial 3D printing applications and introduces them under the brand names INFINAM TI 3100 L and INFINAM ST 6100 L. The two ready-to-use materials were conceptualised and invented in Evonik’s research hub in Singapore. They mark the start of a new product line of polymer resins suitable for use in common VAT polymerisation technologies such as SLA or DLP.

“With the new product line, we are entering the market-relevant photopolymer technology stream, strengthening our long-term market position as materials experts for all major polymer-based 3D printing technologies,” says Dr. Dominic Störkle, head of the Additive Manufacturing Innovation Growth Field at Evonik. “With the new ready-to-use formulations, we are also continuing our materials campaign and driving industrial-scale 3D printing as manufacturing technology along the entire value chain.”

Starting signal for a new photopolymer product line

The first high-performance material from Evonik’s photopolymer product family leads to high toughness and impact-resistant 3D parts. The combination of properties makes INFINAM TI 3100 L the new standard for additive manufacturing of industrial components using VAT polymerisation technologies such as SLA and DLP. The impact resistance measured on printed components is 30 J/m3 with a high elongation at break of 120 percent. The new material can therefore withstand strong impact or permanent mechanical effects such as pressing or impact. The range of possible applications extends from industrial to automotive parts and individual applications in the consumer goods sector, which, in addition to design-free forms, require strong mechanical loads in object use.

The second formulation is setting-up a new benchmark in high strength photo-resin category with a combined tensile strength of 89 MPa, flexural stress of 145 MPa and HDT of 120 deg C, which fills the material gap in ultra-high strength photopolymers. These special material properties make INFINAM ST 6100 L the material of choice for applications which need high temperature resistance combined with high mechanical strength.

 

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How 3D Printed Injection Moulds Can Reduce Production Time & Tooling Cost

How 3D Printed Injection Moulds Can Reduce Production Time & Tooling Cost

As we all know injection moulding requires high initial investment, specialist equipment and lead time for tooling, this can significantly hinder the speed and cost to introduce new products to the market. However, with the continuous advancements in additive manufacturing 3D printing technology is now offering a cost-cutting, agile alternative solution to quickly design and fabricate mould for small runs of thermoplastics prototypes or end-use parts.

What is injection moulding?

Injection moulding is one of the leading processes for manufacturing plastics as it yields high-quality parts and is cost effective. Widely used for mass-producing identical parts with tight tolerances, it is a fast, intensive process where high heat and pressure are involved to melt thermoplastic and force it inside a mould.

Because of these extreme moulding conditions, the tools are traditionally made out of metal by CNC machining or electric discharge machining (EDM). However, these are expensive industrial methods that require specialised equipment, high-end software, and skilled labour.

Manufacturers are now turning to 3D printing to fabricate injection mould rapidly and at low cost. They can benefit from the speed and flexibility of in-house 3D printing to create the mould and couple it with the production force of injection moulding to deliver a series of units from common thermoplastics in a matter of days.

Challenges

Even though 3D printing moulds can offer these advantages when used appropriately, there are still some limitations. We should not expect the same performance from a 3D printing polymer mould as from a machined metallic one. Critical dimensions are harder to meet, cooling time is longer because the thermal transfer occurs slower in plastic, and printed moulds can easily break under heat and pressure. However, low-run injection moulds are great assets for engineers to deliver limited batches of end-use parts or prototypes in the final plastic, for pre-production tests.

Unlocking in demand mould fabrication with stereolithography (SLA)

Stereolithography (SLA) printing technology is a great choice for moulding. It is characterised by a smooth surface finish and high precision that the mould will transfer to the final part and that also facilitates demoulding.

In a recent webinar, Formlabs discusses how SLA printing enables in-demand mould fabrication to generate hundreds of parts, from idea to production, in a matter of days, at a fraction of the cost. Catch the re-run of the webinar here, and learn:

  • Expert processes to design a 3D printed mould for injection moulding.
  • Which printing and moulding conditions ensure success, including an overview of the Formlabs resins that Novus Applications and Braskem use for the moulds.

Strategies for the post-processing workflow, including ejection and demoulding

Real-life applications

Access the full white paper here and have a closer look at how this hybrid manufacturing process enables on-demand mould fabrication to quickly produce small batches of thermoplastic parts through real-life case studies with Braskem, Holimaker, and Novus Applications.

For more information, click here for an overview of methods and guidelines for using SLA 3D printed moulds in the injection moulding process.

 

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