Materials will be the key to a long life for 3D printing, additive manufacturing technology. The ExOne Co., and rp+m have announced an important addition to the materials available for additive manufacturing.
The two companies worked together to develop the application of bonded tungsten in the design of rp+m’s products to be used in protecting people and their environments from the harmful effects of ionizing radiation.
rp+m and its partner, Radiation Protection Technologies, target bundled solutions for lead(Pb) replacement for the medical imaging and aerospace markets. rp+m has ordered an M-Flex™ machine to develop solutions in bonded tungsten, which replaces lead(Pb), with a Restriction of Use of Hazardous Substances (“RoHS”) compliant solution.
Rick Lucas, ExOne’s Chief Technology Officer, commented, “3D printed bonded tungsten is a great solution for radiation shielding because the M-Flex™ can create complex shapes for these applications that would be difficult to create with conventional methods of manufacturing. Our collaboration with rp+m demonstrates the power of our strategy in engaging customers in the early stages of the materials development process, yielding direct applications in new markets.”
Matt Hlavin, Chief Executive Officer of rp+m noted, “We believe ExOne’s M-Flex™ machine is unique because of its ability to use multiple types of material and the machine’s fast print speeds. The ExOne team is clearly committed to forming strategic relationships with innovators, such as rp+m, to drive their 3D technology to new frontiers. rp+m will continue to work with ExOne to develop other materials and applications for the M-Flex™ machine.”
ExOne’s Material Applications Laboratory (ExMAL) continues to have other materials under various stages of development. ExOne has been focused on 3D printing for industrial customers since 2005.