Formnext 2022 sets the stage for high-performance, more sustainable material solutions by ARKEMA

French chemical and materials company Arkema launched two new high-performance custom formulations to extend its range for UV-curing at Formnext 2022. 

N3D-HITEMP062, a hybrid high-temperature material with toughness, and N3D-CAST063, a high-resolution material, offer a matte finish so that details can be seen and a melting behavior during burnout for high-quality castings. Furthermore, Arkema extended its engineered resins portfolio by introducing an elastomeric material with a balance between elongation at a break of 170% and tear strength of 33 kN/m, claims the company.

Liquid resins for UV-curing. Image via Arkema.
Liquid resins for UV-curing. Image via Arkema.

Existing partnerships with EOS and Stratasys

Arkema showcased novel powder bed fusion technologies at Formnext 2022, led by flagship brands such as Kepstan PEKK high-performance thermoplastic and Rilsan bio-based polyamide.

Arkema and EOS announced the upcoming launch of the novel carbon-neutral PA1101 as a result of their ongoing partnership on responsible manufacturing. To meet the requirements of high-temperature applications in the Oil & Gas and Electrical & Electronic markets, Arkema and EOS are expected to unveil a novel Kepstan PEKK powder for the EOS P 810 system, that offers higher ductility, higher recyclability, and excellent electrical insulation.

Furthermore, Arkema also revealed the launch of Kimya Kepstan PEKK-SC 3D filament on Stratasys Validated Material Ecosystem, created with its partners Kimya and Stratasys, with a dedicated variety of advanced polymers for filament extrusion printing technologies. According to Arkema, this high-performance thermoplastic filament “exceeds expectations” in the harshest industrial environments, for instance, end-use Oil & Gas applications such as backup rings.

Powder bed fusion technologies, led by flagship brands such as Rilsan® bio-based polyamide and Kepstan® PEKK high performance thermoplastic. Image via Arkema.
Powder bed fusion technologies, led by flagship brands such as Rilsan® bio-based polyamide and Kepstan® PEKK high-performance thermoplastic. Image via Arkema.

Upcoming partnerships and innovations

Two original, fully formulated materials, co-developed by Arkema and Continuous Composites, are now made available for exclusive use with the Continuous Composites CF3D Enterprise system. The PolyMatTM High Tg product is designed for printing continuous glass and carbon fibers to generate lightweight, high-temperature performance constructions. Carbon Bonded Carbon precursor parts for ultra-high temperature applications are made with ceramic Carbon/Carbon resin.

Arkema’s collaboration with BCN3D to develop resins for their VLMTM 3D printing system is aimed at the industrial, transportation, consumer, and sporting goods markets.

Arkema’s 3D used printed parts and powders recycling solution Virtucycle program is being offered interested to consumers by HP. The Virtucycle program provides eco-design expertise, recyclability and recycling guarantees, and recycled high-performance polymers to Arkema’s polymer customers and downstream users.

3YOURMIND, an on-demand manufacturing software provider, and Arkema have also revealed the launch of ‘Easy 3D’,  an online digital platform that links Arkema customers to suppliers that provide Arkema materials. Engineers who use this platform are given access to Arkema’s material suggestions, which assist in decision-making and part application development for on-demand manufacturing.

Elsewhere, Arkema has joined Replique‘s material partner network. Replique, an additive manufacturing company, is enabling manufacturers to transition from a physical to a digital inventory and to provide worldwide spare parts on demand.

Sustainable materials in additive manufacturing

Recently, EOS, the powder bed fusion (PBF) 3D printer developer, and Siemens, the industrial manufacturing firm, both debuted new sustainable 3D printing powders and applications at Formnext. While Siemens has shown how the inherent design freedoms of 3D printing can significantly lower the footprint of automotive grippers, EOS has introduced two eco-friendly materials. Previously powered by gasoline, the company’s carbon-reduced PA 2200 now emits nearly 45% less CO2. EOS has also released a climate-neutral PA 1101 that is bio-based without sacrificing quality.

Previously, Tvasta Manufacturing Solutions, based in Chennai, had started work with India Cements to produce a novel, more sustainable construction 3D printing material. As part of a ‘strategic collaboration’ agreement, the companies agreed to exchange technologies and conduct joint R&D in order to develop a novel, eco-friendly cement formulation. After collaborating on both private and Indian Air Force projects, the companies intended to expand their collaboration as a way to make Indian construction less resource-intensive.

Elsewhere, Braskem, a Brazilian petrochemical company, had launched its first line of sustainable 3D printing filaments. This novel range, which consists of three filaments produced from bio-based ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA), recycled polyethylene (PE), and polypropylene (PP), were displayed at the RAPID + TCT trade show in Detroit this year. Jason Vagnozzi, Braskem’s Global Commercial Director of Additive Manufacturing said, “Braskem has a longstanding history of innovating and producing more sustainable bio-based polymer 3D printing filaments reaffirms our commitment to a more circular, carbon-neutral future.” 

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Feature image shows Arkema’s headquarters in Colombes, France. Image via Arkema.