Home Industry Desktop Metal enables binder jetting of titanium and aluminum

Desktop Metal enables binder jetting of titanium and aluminum

3D printer manufacturer Desktop Metal has announced a safety upgrade for its P-1 printer. The new “Reactive Safety Kit” opens up the additive manufacturing of reactive metals such as titanium and aluminum using binder jetting technology.

Developed over two years, the kit includes ATEX-certified components as well as hardware and software customizations to ensure the highest safety standards. The ATEX certification confirms that the system is suitable for use in potentially explosive atmospheres in accordance with EU directives.

“Titanium and aluminum are among the materials most in demand. With our updated 3D printer, we can now produce these materials safely and cost-effectively on a production scale,” comments Ric Fulop, founder and CEO of Desktop Metal. Fulop emphasizes the potential for lightweight construction, component streamlining and increased performance through binder jetting technology.

The first customers, such as TriTech, are already using metal powder binder jetting. “The process is a good addition to our metal powder injection molding business and simplifies titanium component production even for complex geometries at reduced costs,” explains Robert Swenson, owner of TriTech.

In addition to titanium, Desktop Metal is working on other specialty alloys such as aluminum, developed in collaboration with Kymera International.

Binder jetting technology is considered the fastest metal printing process for large quantities. In this process, metal powder is printed layer by layer with binder and the resulting molded parts are solidified in a downstream sintering step. Compared to conventional processes, the technology offers advantages such as component weight reduction, freedom of shape and more economical small-batch production.

In total, Desktop Metal qualifies over 30 metal and ceramic powders for the P-1 and other systems. Titanium and aluminum are currently approved for the production machines, but still have to undergo material and process analyses.

With the Reactive Safety Kit, the company aims to further develop promising high-strength lightweight materials for new additive manufacturing applications.

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