Solvay has teamed up with Aerosint in a research agreement to develop a selective laser sintering (SLS) printing process for polymers. The two Belgian companies shall work on creating a 3D printing process that is also economically efficient. Solvay owns a range of high-performing polymers that includes Ryton polyphenylene sulfide (PPS) and KetaSpire polyetheretherketone (PEEK) exhibit prospective growth in the field of 3D printing but their integration with powder fusion processes like SLS has not been explored. Chemical company Solvay has been working with the Belgium-based engineering company Aerosint for nearly two years towards the creation of a game-changing technology with advanced material and fusion power. The new agreement will strengthen their collaboration towards the innovation of high performing material technology.
Additive manufacturing has shown a lot of potential in the aerospace, automotive and medical industries and polymers printed with this process can efficiently replace metals in varied applications. The 3D printers market is booming owing to its increasing demand and their usage in the formulation of complex structures. However, the wastage of material is turning out to be an expensive concern. Aerosint has adopted a different method of multi-material deposition, which selectively deposits powder material over the build surface from a rotating drum. This process allows for the replacement of powder re-coater with two or more ceramic, metal and polymer powders to create a multi-layered structure with spatial selectivity in both SLS and Selective laser melting (SLM) 3D printers.
This agreement follows another venture by Aerosint into Additive Manufacturing. The company recently announced a partnership with Aconity3D for the expansion of multi-material 3D printing applications. Solvay, on the other hand, announced a deal with Austrian firm Lenzing to create a sustainable fabric using Tencel’s lyocell fibers and the biodegradable polyamide Amni Soul Eco, which will combine and optimize the benefits that the two offer including thermal regulation, breathability, etc.