Within the project NextGen 3D the implementation of commercially relevant polyolefins in FDM 3D-printing, from analysis of existing filament types via development of tailor-made polyolefin compounds to necessary adaptions on the printer is targeted. Most commercially available filament types consist of PLA or ABS. FDM-3D-printing in industrial processes is limited due to the lack of availability of industrially operational printers, but is also subjected to material constrains. Polyolefins provide several advantages compared to existing filament types, such as higher impact strength or better temperature stability and comparability with industrial products. Based on material science, essential structure-property relationships are derived and knowledge about the printability of polyolefin compounds is gained. Using compounding or lab-scale polymerization technology, tailor-made polyolefin filaments are produced and characterized. They are processed in an improved print head and investigated using within the project designed test geometries. The characterization of the test geometries is performed using an optical inspection system and a profilometer to investigate the surface properties. In addition, near infrared measurements and heat flow-thermography are performed inline during the printing process. Information about the consistency of the part structure, especially the bonding of the new layer to the previously printed one, is determined based on the analysis of the time-dependent temperature evolution at the part surface.

Project Name:
Next Generation 3D-Printing: Material- and Prozess development for the industry-strength application

Funding:   
FFG – 7. Ausschreibung Produktion der Zukunft nat. Projekte

Duration:
01.04.2015 – 31.03.2018