According to Markus Solibieda, Managing Director of BASF Venture Capital GmbH, this is the firm’s first investment in a Chinese company. Following a number of other deals made in recent years, including a $25 million partnership with Materialise, Solidieda confirms that the investment “supports BASF’s strategy of actively advancing our technologies and expanding our product offering in the 3D printing
A “trailblazing technology”
Headquartered in Shanghai, Prismlab is the patent holder of “Pixel Resolution Enhanced Technology” also known as “MFP.” Based on SLA, Primslab’s patented technology is designed to 3D print large components at a high resolution. It uses an LCD lightsource, and works by dividing each “pixel” of printable resin into smaller sections which are exposed to light multiple times. According to the company, “This makes the energy input into each pixel significantly higher than similar processes that expose each pixel to light once.”
MFP is marketed by Prismlab in the RP series of 3D printers available in a range of sizes for different applications. According to the company, this range of products offers an output rate of up to 1000 grams per hour, with “100 μm precision for any parts of 600 mm high.”
Commenting on MFP Solideda added “The trailblazing technology from Prismlab allows large and stable components, such as medical braces and anatomical models, to be 3D printed for the first time.”
BASF ramps up 3D printing abilities
In 2018 alone, BASF has entered into strategic materials development agreements with German large scale 3D printer provider BigRep, UK based LCD 3D printer manufacturer Photocentric and Essentium Materials. In July 2018, BASF also completed the acquisition of European materials producers Advanc3D Materials and Setup Performance.
In China in particular, BASF is helping Shanghai-headquartered Farsoon Technologies expand its European business. Dr. Zheng Daqing, BASF’s Senior Vice President, Business and Market Development Greater China, concludes, “China is transforming from a manufacturing-driven to an innovation-driven economy,”
“This investment in Prismlab reflects our commitment to further expanding our innovation capabilities in China, and BASF Venture Capital plays an important role in helping us identifying potential partners that lead us to success.”
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Featured image shows “Jumbo Size” 3D printing. Image via Prismlab