3D printer manufacturer Formlabs has added two new materials to its dental portfolio: a Permanent Crown Resin and a Soft Tissue Starter Pack.
The former, which was developed with orthodontic specialist BEGO, is designed to provide clients with a low-cost solution that addresses the growing market for additive crowns. Formlabs’ Starter Pack, meanwhile, enables users to create tailored resins that could yield more accurate models and accelerate their implantation.
“3D printing improves the patient experience and enables dental labs and practices to provide patients with higher quality, more reliable and affordable solutions,” said Georgio Haddad, Formlabs’ Dental Strategic Partnerships Lead. “We’re committed to innovating our offerings to provide the dental industry with the tools needed to operate at the cutting edge.”
Formlabs’ dental 3D printing portfolio
Although Formlabs is known for its resin-based ‘Form’ systems, it has also developed several biocompatible resins for use within the medical and dental sectors. The company launched its Dental SG material in 2016, which was quickly followed by the releases of the ‘Dental Model’ and ‘Dental LT Clear’ in 2017.
Since its acquisition of Spectra, Formlabs has stepped up its offering for dental clients with the foundation of its Formlabs Dental division, and the release of the Form B. Alongside its new machine, the firm also debuted ten specialist polymers and a novel Surgical Guide Resin, that were optimized for orthodontic use.
Over the last year, these dental products have been supplemented by six more clinical materials, the firm’s Rigid 10K Resin and the launch of its biocompatible 3BL machine. Amid this flurry of dental activity, Formlabs has also formed a partnership with BEGO, using its materials to 3D print various crowns within its Form 2 systems.
Following the success of its collaboration with BEGO, the company has now gone one step further, and announced the launch of its own range of proprietary resins for permanent dental restorations.
Formlabs’ ‘crowning’ achievement?
Formlabs has launched its new materials with the stated aim of further digitizing dentistry, while providing patients with more durable implants. The firm’s Permanent Crown Resin is the first in its portfolio to target the emerging dental cap market, which has been buoyed by the growing accessibility of additive in recent years.
This increase in attainability has enabled Formlabs to more effectively validate a product with enhanced properties, accuracy and fit compared to conventional materials. The resin itself is tooth-colored, ceramic-filled and specifically optimized for 3D printing permanent single crowns, inlays, onlays, and veneers.
Although the low-cost material is being marketed towards dental firms, many of its features, such as high strength and low water absorption, are designed to benefit patients. Similarly, Formlabs claims that the resin’s smooth finish decreases the tendency for implants to age, while preventing them from becoming discolored.
With its Starter Pack, the firm aims to enable its dental clientele to create tailored soft tissue resins that can be used to print gingiva masks for implant models. The kit, which includes Formlabs’ Flexible 80A resin and three color pigments, could ultimately allow users to plan procedures more accurately, while minimizing downtime.
The competitive additive dental market
As the dental applications of 3D printing continue to grow, various material producers are now battling it out to win over potential clients, by developing resins with the best possible orthodontic qualities.
South Koran photopolymer develop Graphy recently launched its Tera Harz brand of resins. The company’s new material has been engineered with two carbon backbones, allowing it to be customized by users to address their specific needs.
Similarly, Saremco Dental has also released a new polymer for 3D printing permanent restorations such as crowns, inlays and veneers. The company’s CROWNTEC UV-photocurable resin passed several of TÜV SÜD’s global certification checks prior to being released in the market.
Elsewhere, 3D printer and materials manufacturer Carbon has partnered with dental equipment firm Dentsply Sirona to create novel resins for fabricating dentures. The partnership has seen Dentsply use Carbon’s DLS technology to develop materials with improved strength, aesthetics, and lab efficiency.
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Featured image shows a dental implant that was 3D printed using Formlabs’ new Permanent Crown Resin. Image via Formlabs.