On March 2, 2023, the Additive Center “Faberlab powered by Arburg” was ceremoniously opened as part of an open house event. The center at Faberlab, service provider for industrial additive manufacturing, offers companies beyond the region the unique opportunity to get hands-on experience with additive machines from Arburg and innovatiQ.
In Orrigio in the greater Milan area, customers benefit from the combined knowledge and close cooperation of Faberlab and Arburg. However, this is not just about the technology itself, but also about all kinds of services related to industrial additive manufacturing and across the entire value chain from development to production. This includes, for example, rapid prototyping, component design, but also training.
Commenting on the joint work in Italy, Dr. Victor Roman, Managing Director of ARBURGadditive, based in Lossburg, Germany, said, “3D technology and its dissemination are fundamental at a time when companies need innovation to reduce the time and cost required to implement projects. In this sense, the partnership created with Faberlab is an integral part of this process and an element that we consider strategic for the entire Italian market.”
So far, no other Italian center can offer this to entrepreneurs, research centers or educational institutions. For this purpose, Arburg provides a 200-3X freeformer, a 300-3X high-temperature freeformer and an innovatiQ TiQ 5 printer with a large installation space for processing high-performance thermoplastics. From Arburg’s side, additive customers can contact Ivan Panfiglio, manager for additive manufacturing in Italy.
This pilot project corresponds to the Arburg Prototyping Center (APC) that the company operates at its headquarters in Lossburg, Germany, as well as its subsidiaries in the USA and China. Customers can now also have benchmark components produced and materials qualified in Italy. Arburg has thus strategically further expanded the reach of its AM activities and can now also specifically address the local requirements and needs of the Italian market.
Raffaele Abbruzzetti, Managing Director of Arburg Srl in Italy, also sees the cooperation in a positive light: “It is an important collaboration between two independent companies, but with the common interest of offering additive manufacturing and its perspectives with machines and, above all, the launch of production on demand. In this way, Arburg has opened the possibility of producing samples and qualifying new materials directly on site at the request of Italian customers. Faberlab can now use its experience gained over the years with a complete machine park. Therefore, ‘Faberlab powered by Arburg’ can play an active role in supporting industry, institutions and research centers in such an important industrial region as Lombardy and beyond.”
Center for Additive Manufacturing operational
At the opening of the “digital lab” in Orrigio, a total of 118 guests were present for consultations, networking and technical discussions with the specialists. Eltek Spa, an Arburg customer from Casale Monferrato, presented visitors with a case study showcasing products created on the freeformer.
Massimo Zanin, senior development engineer at Eltek Spa, notes, “Eltek has about a hundred Arburg injection molding machines. This is how we came into contact with Faberlab and the Freeformer. For us, this is a very special machine, not a classic filament 3D printer. For plastics processors like us, it’s important to have a system that allows prototyping with the same plastics as the production product. Our prototypes should have approximately the same mechanical properties as the original. The Freeformer is the printer that best meets these requirements, he said. Faberlab and Arburg worked together to help Eltek make the best use of the machine, he said.”
An Eltek product built entirely on the Freeformer has given research a big boost. It is a rapid antibiogram, which is a microbiological test method that allows the analysis of the response of a bacterium to an antibiotic. This makes it possible to understand the patient’s pathology very quickly and save lives in this way.
Almost anything is possible
At the “Faberlab powered by Arburg” Additive Center in Orrigio, it is possible to produce not only standard additive components but also, for example, complex functional components as hard-soft compounds or with support material. A wide range of original materials, material combinations and colors of the highest quality and stability are available for production on an industrial scale. Two of many examples are 3D printing with ABS for impact-resistant components with high surface quality or the additive processing of SEBS, a TPE with high elasticity, softness, good coloring and moldability. This means that in Italy, too, there is now nothing left to be desired in terms of industrial additive manufacturing.
Davide Baldi from Faberlab also praises cooperation and technology: “The cooperation between Faberlab and Arburg is an opportunity for both sides. With the Freeformer, Arburg has developed an innovative and unique product that can be promoted through this partnership. Faberlab contributes a lab like no other, bringing additive technology to companies and promoting technological development. We also have a large pool of companies in the plastics industry, many of which are already Arburg customers. So the needs of both partners can be brought together very well.
Arburg’s Freeformer works very close to production and, as an open system, fits perfectly with Faberlab’s development goals. The collaboration is also an opportunity for companies to get closer to an innovative new technology.”
Find out more about Arburg at arburg.com.
For mroe information about Faberlab, please visit faberlab.org.
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