Partnership in Additive Manufacturing Expanded
Evonik and NXT Factory Strengthen their Cooperation
The specialty chemicals company Evonik Industries AG, Essen, Germany, and the US start-up for 3D printing technologies NXT Factory, based in Ventura, CA/USA, are expanding their partnership in additive manufacturing. As part of this collaboration, Evonik will use its ready-to-use material development concept for the QLS technology of NXT Factory in order to establish it on the market with a corresponding material portfolio.
Completely Automated Manufacturing
QLS 350 is a powder-based 3D printing technology, which was developed by NXT Factory, based on a patented laser light engine. Designed for completely automated lights-out twenty-four-seven operation, this system fully enables the potential of Industry 4.0 by taking additive manufacturing from prototyping to low and medium volume production.
The user-friendly design of the printer features, inter alia, Autonomous Guided Vehicle (AGV), so that the powder bed can be cooled outside the machine and moved autonomously to the depowdering station, which reportedly significantly improves productivity. QLS 350 was also designed to be able to process high-temperature materials like Evonik’s polyamide 613 (PA613).
“We have applied all our mechanical engineering experience to the development of the new QLS technology in order to create a new category in industrial manufacturing,” says Kuba Graczyk, CEO of NXT Factory. “We are very excited to work with Evonik’s in-depth materials expertise to advance our technology together.”
A Wide Range of Materials in Use
“The new technology of NXT Factory offers further possibilities for our polymer formulations and is a perfect fit for our ready-to-use concept for strategic material development. It is our goal to provide new material systems in cooperation with customers and partners in order to further diversify the market for 3D printing materials and drive it towards serial production,” says Thomas Große-Puppendahl, head of the Additive Manufacturing innovation growth field at Evonik.
Evonik plans to release its high-temperature polymer powder PA613 on NXT Factory’s QLS 350 platform in the first quarter of 2020.
Evonik Industries AG
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