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Report on Silicone 3D Printing State-of-the-Art Technologies

IP.com Disclosure Number: IPCOM000249606D
Publication Date: 2017-Mar-07
Document File: 4 page(s) / 184K

Publishing Venue

The IP.com Prior Art Database

Abstract

Additive Manufacturing (AM) is an appropriate name to describe the technologies that build 3D objects by adding layer-upon-layer of material, whether the material is plastic, rubber, metal, ceramic, concrete, wood, food or human tissue. Also composite materials can be manufactured like fiber-reinforced materials, wood-plastic-composites or materials functionalized with active ingredients (electrically conductive, thermally conductive, media-resistant, etc.). Common to AM technologies is the use of a computer, 3D modeling software (Computer Aided Design or CAD), machine equipment and layering material. After a digital 3D model (e.g. CAD-file) is created, the AM equipment reads in data from the CAD file and generates single layers for printing (slicing). Subsequently, these layers are built up by the layering material consisting of liquid, powder, sheet material or other, in a layer-upon-layer fashion to fabricate a 3D object. The term AM encompasses many technologies including subsets like 3D Printing, Rapid Prototyping (RP), Direct Digital Manufacturing (DDM), layered manufacturing and additive fabrication. AM application is limitless. Early use of AM in the form of Rapid Prototyping focused on preproduction visualization models. More recently, AM is being used to fabricate end-use products in aircraft, dental restorations, medical implants, automobiles, and even fashion products.

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March 03, 2017

Report on Silicone 3D Printing State-of-the-Art Technologies

1. Subject

Additive Manufacturing (AM) is an appropriate name to describe the technologies that build

3D objects by adding layer-upon-layer of material, whether the material is plastic, rubber,

metal, ceramic, concrete, wood, food or human tissue. Also composite materials can be

manufactured like fiber-reinforced materials, wood-plastic-composites or materials

functionalized with active ingredients (electrically conductive, thermally conductive, media-

resistant, etc.). Common to AM technologies is the use of a computer, 3D modeling software

(Computer Aided Design or CAD), machine equipment and layering material. After a digital

3D model (e.g. CAD-file) is created, the AM equipment reads in data from the CAD file and

generates single layers for printing (slicing). Subsequently, these layers are built up by the

layering material consisting of liquid, powder, sheet material or other, in a layer-upon-layer

fashion to fabricate a 3D object. The term AM encompasses many technologies including

subsets like 3D Printing, Rapid Prototyping (RP), Direct Digital Manufacturing (DDM), layered

manufacturing and additive fabrication. AM application is limitless. Early use of AM in the

form of Rapid Prototyping focused on preproduction visualization models. More recently, AM

is being used to fabricate end-use products in aircraft, dental restorations, medical implants,

automobiles, and even fashion products.

In particular there are bed based technologies and dosing technologies.

Bed based technologies are

- MJF Multi-Jet Fusion (e.g. HP)

- BJ Binder Jetting (e.g. Voxeljet)

- SLS Selective Laser Sintering (e.g. EOS)

- SLA Stereolithography (e.g. 3D Systems)

- DLP Direct Light Processing (e.g. Envisiontec)

- CLIP Continuous Liquid Interface Production (e.g. Carbon3D)

- PICSIMA Sub Surface Catalysation (e.g. Fripp Design)

Dosing Technologies are

- MJ Multijet Printing (e.g. Stratasys)

- Freeformer Drop-on-Demand (e.g. Arburg)

- FDM Fused deposition Modelling (e.g. Stratasys)

- ACEO® Drop-on-Demand (e.g. WACKER CHEMIE AG)

- Paste Extrusion (various, e.g. German RepRap)

2. Scope

In this report the state-of-the art for Silicone 3D Printing is described. The technologies used for

reactive liquids, like typical photo-polymerizable acrylate printing inks for ink-jet printing,

can´t be applied. Some market participants claim to 3D-print silicones with Multi-Jet-Printing

(like Keyence), however, in fact the material is a silicone-acrylate-copolymer. To obtain 100%

silicone rubber, the layering material has relatively high viscosity and low surface energy. This

requires a technology to dose pasty materials.

3. Technologies to position a dosing device in x,y,z-coordinates

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A dosing device for the silicone layering material has to be positioned with x,y,z-coordinates

according to the desired geometry of the shaped object. The positioning can be achieved

with e.g. a gantry robot (#1 in the pictu...