Metal Binder Jetting remains an elitist technology for mass production of 3D printed parts. So far, the market is propelled by dominant players such as Desktop Metal whose strength is based on its acquisition of ExOne, GE Additive and Markforged – whose strong positioning on the market (20% of market shares) is due to its acquisition of Digital Metal.
HP is coming in full force with the commercial availability of its Metal Jet S100 Solution to a wider audience. When the AM company first announced the development of metal binder jetting technology in 2018, GKN Aerospace and Parmatech, a medical equipment supplier, were pretty much the only manufacturers that benefitted from the solution. Two years ago, HP started selling its metal binder jetting solution exclusively to service bureaus. With the availability of the Metal Jet S100 solution to the wider commercial AM market, HP achieves a significant milestone by opening the doors for a digital reinvention of the global metals manufacturing sector, with a strong focus on end-to-end supply chain solutions.
“We are witnessing entire industries, from industrial to consumer, and healthcare to automotive, looking to digitally transform their manufacturing processes and supply chains in a world where volatility is the new normal,” said Didier Deltort, President of HP’s Personalization and 3D Printing business. “As the promise of additive manufacturing takes hold, HP has become a trusted partner to help speed the path to production. The introduction of our new Metal Jet commercial solution, along with innovative collaboration with market leaders like Schneider Electric, is delivering the blueprint for more sustainable, reliable, and efficient manufacturing.”
The Metal Jet S100 Solution, key features to keep in mind.
The new metal 3D printed provides integrated workflow, subscription and service offerings that can help any manufacturer tap into the machine’s industrial production capabilities, no matter what stage of its business transformation.
The modular solution enables build units to travel between four different stations, meaning users can continually run production at scale for mass metals production. The Metal Jet S100 Solution leverages Thermal Inkjet technology and Latex chemistry in order to deliver cost, quality, productivity, and reliability advantages.
HP’s Thermal Inkjet printhead improves the printing speed, part quality, and repeatability. The advanced latex chemistries developed by HP lend significant benefits to the binder itself, enabling stronger green parts, eliminating the need for de-binding, and yielding industrial production-grade quality, a press release reads.
Other advantages that are worth mentioning include:
- The ability to achieve new nesigns: New geometries, density control and designs to lightweight or consolidate metal parts push the boundaries of what is possible with 3D printing.
- Improved Customer Economics: Process steps needed to create parts are shortened whilst costs due to manual labor or complexity requirements are reduced, driving efficiencies across the supply chain.
Amid the organizations that are currently exploring mass metals production opportunities, there is Schneider Electric, an expert in the digital transformation of energy management and automation. Its product portfolio includes products, controls, software and services across residential, commercial, industrial and critical applications.
Together with GKN, a new filter used on Schneider Electric’s NSX breaker was produced using HP Metal Jet technology, which could not be achieved with conventional industrial manufacturing capabilities due to the shape & material complexity. HP Metal Jet technology not only facilitated the design of new power filters shapes that reduce gas, pressure, and heat impact in a more limited space, it also resulted in significant productivity gains and environmental benefits.
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