The main challenge in today’s and tomorrow’s industry is speed. How to release new products onto the market faster? How can these products be certified more quickly? These issues definitely impact the development cycle of industrial products.

Prodways Technologies, Openlab by Schneider Electric and the Platinium 3D platform decided to tackle this issue through a collaboration on a project: Integrating 3D printing into the production of plastic injection molds.

The project

Schneider Electric aims at producing its prototypes fast in order to obtain certification and perform functional tests with the final material.

Traditional manufacturing techniques being expensive, the specialist in electric decides to 3D print prototype moulds in order to inject final material parts and speed up the iterations needed to get certified before producing the final production mold.

Prodways and Platinium 3D come into play at this moment and offer the Openlab the MOVINGLight® technology in order to print plastic injection molds in 3D. The same technology is used by professionals in digital dentistry.

At the end, 25 3D printed tooling molds enable to inject hundreds of parts on an injection molding machine under manufacturing conditions in order to create parts that matched the final shape and complied with the certification prerequisites with the correct polymer grade.

Furthermore, experts found out that Glass-charged polyamide is ideal and the most appropriate for this production due to its heat resistance. It is also a prerequisite for getting certifications.

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