Infinite Material Solutions LLC., an innovator in material design for additive manufacturing, announced the official launch of a new material with fascinating potential. The product, called Caverna PP, is an extrudable thermoplastic with a water-soluble, co-continuous, microporous morphology: It’s a 3D printing filament that allows users to create lightweight foam parts resembling a sponge.
Specifically designed for use in Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF) systems, Caverna PP is the first in Infinite’s line of forthcoming Caverna build materials. Each one will be a unique blend of two polymers: a soluble material to be removed through dissolution, and an insoluble build material (in this case, polypropylene) to remain. After dissolution, the water-soluble phase leaves behind a cave-like network of microporous, interconnected channels inside the build material, making it light, soft, and porous.
The company expects this new material for additive manufacturers to be used for applications in fields such as filtration, separators, footwear, and personal protective equipment. One area of particular interest is the potential to create porous tooling for the production of vacuum formed parts. Caverna PP’s co-continuous distribution of tiny pores (1–4µ) could allow for consistent airflow, eliminating the need to drill holes, and maximizing material distribution.
Caverna PP joins two other novel materials in Infinite’s portfolio: AquaSys 120 and AquaSys 180 water-soluble support filaments. These materials pair with popular build materials, ranging from PLA to PEEK, to support complex designs, then dissolve quickly in tap water to leave behind a finished part. Infinite recommends pairing Caverna PP with AquaSys 120 for one-step dissolution. Users can simply print the part, leave it to dissolve, and come back to find a complete build with a microporous structure.
Infinite Material Solutions, LLC