Vienna-based manufacturer of high-performance ceramic 3D printing systems Lithoz has just gotten a financial boost from Dr. Hans J. Langer, founder and CEO of EOS, the industry leading producer of plastic and metal 3D printers. With a firm belief in the potential for high-performance ceramics and the company’s unique 3D printing systems, Dr. Langer will push Lithoz forward in the 3D printing market.
CEO and founder of Lithoz, Dr. Johannes Homa, proudly reflected, “In the past three years Lithoz has managed to establish a new an innovative production method in the field of high-performance ceramics. Through our partnership with Dr. Langer our work finds special recognition and our future growth opportunities will increase significantly.”
Developed out of the Vienna University of Technology, the company’s Lithography-based Ceramic Manufacturing method cures photopolymers infused with ceramic particles using specially designed projection optics. Lithoz suggests that high-performance ceramics may be “the material of the future”, due to a number of physical properties that allow it to excel in environments where other materials may not. Some of these properties, as listed on the company’s website, include: “high temperature resistance, high corrosion resistance, high wear resistance, good tribological properties, low density, high hardness, low thermal expansion, good electrical and thermal insulating properties, [and] excellent biocompatibility.” Lithoz CTO and founder, Dr. Johannes Patzer, elaborates, “Because of their outstanding properties, high-perfomrance ceramics are used wherever other materials fail. This applies, for example, to commponents that are used in corrosive environments or components that are exposed to extreme tribological environments and high temperatures.”
All of this has played into Dr. Langer’s decision to invest in Lithoz, with the CEO saying, “With Lithoz we have found a competent partner who will complement our product range ideally in the future. While EOS is the world leader in the field of laser sintering of metals and plastics, the technology of Lithoz will open up a variety of new technical applications in the field of high-performance ceramics. In my opinion there is great potential for high-performance ceramics in aerospace and medical applications.” Among the applications that Lithoz brings to the medical field is the area of bone replacement, for which the company has created a material called LithaBone that is similar to the mineral phase of human bone, including its osteoconductive properties.
Being relatively unfamiliar with the world of high-performance ceramics, this new investment is an interesting one to me. I’m excited to see in what ways Lithoz and EOS may partner in the future and what sorts of applications the material may have across various industries.