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Environmentally friendly 3D printing

11/15/2011

voxeljet and Hüttenes-Albertus are the first to successfully produce inorganically bound moulds and cores using the 3D printing method, without the use of tools. With the development of a new mass-producible, inorganic binder system, 3D printing follows the growing trend towards environmentally-friendly moulding materials in foundries.

The moulding material system developed by Hüttenes-Albertus in conjunction with voxeljet can be used on voxeljet 3D printers. With the new system, which will be available as of the second quarter of 2012, moulding material containing inorganic binder – inorganic prepared sand – is applied to an area in micrometre-fine layers, and then selectively printed with a liquid. The print solution activates the binder in the sand, which binds the surrounding moulding material particles. This process is repeated layer by layer until the desired mould has been produced.

Following the layer building process, the sand moulds are dried in an oven for a few hours, and are then available for casting. voxeljet-CEO, Dr. Ingo Ederer, sees the new development as an important step toward more sustainable production. "Previously, inorganic binder systems were used only in mass production. We have now brought their ecological and technological advantages to the AM environment as well."

In some systems, inorganic binders are superior to products based on artificial resin. And contrary to organic products, inorganic binders do not burn during the casting process, thus avoiding the emissions that are known to result from organic systems and which are harmful to the environment and health. The new technology also does not produce the typical odour that occurs during the casting process as a result of the burning of the organic material. Therefore the method is deemed as environmentally friendly. At the same time, it has a positive effect on the quality of the cast.

CONTACT:

Marketing / PR
Tel.: +49 821 7483 440
stefanie.riker@voxeljet.de

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