systems. HP's other Open Platform materials partners include Arkema and Lehman & Voss.
A 3D-printed fuel intake runner fabricated from Solvay's KetaSpire PEEK instead of the typical aluminum uses 10% glass fill. (Source: Solvay)
Although polymer leader Solvay makes existing 3D printing materials, the company recently announced it will expand those capabilities as part of its advanced lightweighting solutions that aim at replacing metals. Building on its established AM technical center and production facility for Sinterline Technyl in Lyon, France, Solvay has opened a new laboratory at its Research & Innovation Center in Alpharetta, Georgia for advanced AM materials.
The company has contributed its materials expertise to a 3D printed part for the Polimotor 2 all-plastic engine, designed by industry pioneer Matti Holtzberg. The project aims to leverage advanced polymer technology for a four-cylinder, double-overhead CAM engine weighing 40kg less than today's standard production engine. The plenum chamber is 3D printed with selective laser sintering (SLS) using Solvay's Sinterline Technyl PA 6 powder grade reinforced with a 40% loading of glass beads.
Solvay has also conducted tests comparing the tensile properties of samples 3D printed and injection molded from KetaSpire KT-820 PEEK. In a 3D-printed fuel intake runner fabricated with this material, the KT-820 custom-formulated grade is reinforced with 10% glass fill, and was produced with Arevo Labs' Reinforced Filament Fusion technology. Other plastics products the company is developing for AM include its AvaSpire PAEK, KetaSpire PEEK, and Radel polyphenylsulfone (PPSU) for Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF) processes, along with PEKK for SLS.
Ann R. Thryft has been writing about manufacturing- and electronics-related technologies for 29 years, covering manufacturing materials & processes, alternative energy, and robotics. In the past, she's also written about machine vision and all kinds of communications.