KraussMaffei, a leading manufacturer of machines and systems for producing and processing plastics and rubber, is the latest OEM to bring its expertise to the AM industry.

With the development of powerPrint and precisionPrint, a large-format industrial additive manufacturing and an automated machine concept for highest quality and resolution, KraussMaffei intends to open up new applications for additive manufacturing with plastic granulate and resin-based 3D printing materials respectively, along the plastic components value chain.

For modern plastics processors, but also for users from other industries such as medical technology, the construction industry and the foundry industry, this creates new market opportunities.

KraussMaffei CEO Dr. Michael Ruf explains, “KraussMaffei is opening up additive manufacturing technology for industrial production. Using our expertise gleaned from series production of plastic parts, we are designing efficient system concepts and appropriate solutions for every component, regardless of the technology. For us, this is about taking our capacity for productivity, quality and efficiency in industrial plastics processing and applying it to additive manufacturing solutions.”

What should we know about powerPrint and precisionPrint?

powerPrint is an extruder-based system for processing thermoplastic granulates. Designed for large-format additive manufacturing applications up to 10 m³, the machine is said to provide high discharge rates at fast printing speeds, enabling short throughput times for large components.

Splitting printing and milling allows maximum flexibility and system utilisation at favorable investment costs. A wide variety of fibre-reinforced plastics and compounds can be processed, a press release reads.

 For Rolf Mack, Head of Additive Manufacturing, “the advantage for customers is two-fold: optimum component properties are achieved at favorable material costs; and short setup times and the use of common software solutions for print preparation also enable rapid implementation from component design to printing.” “In developing this, our goal was optimal application-specific processing of thermoplastic materials to ensure production according to industrial standards”, he adds.

On the other hand, the automated machine concept precisionPrint is based on a high-performance SL (stereolithography) technology. The machine would deliver high output rates by processing printing resins cured by laser.

precisionPrint supports plastics processors along the entire product life cycle and opens up market opportunities for individualised products and smaller production batches. “Production with almost no material loss and great design possibilities – we bring these additive manufacturing advantages from prototyping to industrial series production of plastic components. Together with our customers, we rethink plant concepts and find efficient additive manufacturing solutions for a wide range of application areas“, Mack says.

2023 will be dedicated to an intensive test phase with beta customers, after which the industrial 3D printers will be available on the market.

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