Lubrizol launches first TPU 3D printer materials at TCT Asia 2018

TCT Asia 2018 has seen major announcements on 3D printer materials from BASF and Oerlikon, and now fellow materials company Lubrizol has announced its first three products for the additive manufacturing market.

The Cleveland, Ohio-based chemicals and materials company unveiled its new Estane thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) range of 3D printer materials, developed by its Engineered Polymers line of business.

Lubrizol at TCT Asia 2018. Photo via Lubrizol.
Lubrizol at TCT Asia 2018. Photo via Lubrizol.

The Lubrizol Estane range

Now available for additive manufacturing applications, the Estane TPU range includes soft, flexible to hard, and rigid grades of 3D printer material. While the material names have not been revealed yet, existing materials in the Estane TPU range that are optimized for extrusion and injection molding may give a good idea as to the properties of the new materials.

Amongst the existing range are the Estane ETE (Easy-to-extrude) TPU material, Estane 58000 TPU, and the Estane® MVT (Moisture Vapor Transmission) TPU materials.

“Following the recently-announced partnership with HP, Lubrizol continues to expand our presence within the fast-growing space of 3D Printing,” said David Pascual, Lubrizol marketing manager for 3D printing, adding:

“This event offers a great opportunity to further showcase our broad TPU portfolio aiming to serve all thermoplastic 3DP technologies including FDM, SLS and MJF (Multi Jet Fusion – proprietary HP technology).”

Lubrizol Advance Materials headquarters building in Brecksville, Ohio U.S.A.
Lubrizol Advance Materials headquarters building in Brecksville, Ohio U.S.A. Photo via Lubrizol.

A material developed using the HP Open Materials platform

Lubrizol joined the HP open materials platform in 2017, and was given access to HP’s Open Materials and Applications Lab and its research tools, in order to develop its TPU materials.

In February 2018, Lubrizol expanded its TPU manufacturing capacity, with new capacity added across the company’s plants North America, Europe and Asia, alongside a combined investment of nearly $80 million.

Explaining the investment, Lubrizol VP Arnau Pano said, “we see a robust market poised for growth with a rebounding global economy, infrastructure and technology investments, and increasing demand for higher performing, more sustainable materials.”

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Featured image shows a range of Lubrizol 3D printing applications. Photo via Lubrizol.