Materials

ACEO officially launches Open Print lab

WACKER CHEMIE AG, has announced that their ACEO Open Print Lab is now officially open in Burghausen, Germany. WACKER is a leading chemical manufacturing company.

The ACEO campus is designed to deepen understanding and experience using ACEO technology. As previously reported by 3D Printing Industry in 2015 WACKER had developed an inkjet 3D printing technique to work with silicones.

At the time WACKER’s Dr. Bernd Pachaly explained, “Until now, it had been impossible to print elastomers – i.e. rubbery materials. There were just no suitable processes available. Injection molding is the established process for series production, and will remain so.”

Dr. Pachaly is now the Head of Project 3D Printing at WACKER SILICONES. Speaking about the ACEO campus he says, “Information and education across industries are key to understanding the variety of opportunities and applications offered by the ACEO technology. We want customers to understand how our solution matches their needs.”

To this end the Open Print Lab offers tailor-made programs to small groups of up to 4 people. Participants will receive training, consisting of theoretical and printing sessions from additive manufacturing basics to advanced design.

3D printing with silicones is generating substantial interest. Yesterday we reported on how German RepRap and their Liquid Additive Manufacturing process can 3D print with polyurethanes.

WACKER explains that their silicones, “keep their outstanding properties such as temperature and radiation resistance, biocompatibility, a broad color range or variation of hardness throughput the 3D printing process.”

3D printing industry focus on materials

A focus on materials is evident at many of the leading enterprises in the 3D printing industry. Carbon’s CEO, for example, places a great deal of emphasis on this area and has background in material science.

Furthermore, during 3D Printing Industry’s visit earlier this year to HP’s R&D lab in Corvallis, we heard more about the importance of developing materials in partnership with domain experts. At HP this means working with approximately 50 material partners and the use of the Materials Development Kit in order to fast track the development 3D printable materials for the Multi Jet Fusion printer.

More information about WACKERS drop-on-demand technology for 3D printing real elastomer parts and the ACEO campus is available here.

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