SABIC is a global leader in thermoplastic technology. At the recent RAPID + TCT Show, the company focused on how its line of materials can help advance additive manufacturing applications, ranging from prototyping to full-scale production.
Here’s a look at SABIC’s material offerings:
— Polycarbonate (PC) materials for selective laser sintering (SLS): SABIC is working on a technology that will enable laser sintering of PC materials, which will display good mechanical properties and part densities above 96%. These materials may provide an alternative to polyamide 12 (PA 12) and can be processed using commercially available printers.
— EXTEM polyimide (PI) filaments for fused deposition modeling. High-temperature tolerant materials are an ongoing need in additive manufacturing. These filaments are suitable for applications requiring higher temperature performance than ULTEM polyetherimide (PEI) filaments.
— High-impact-strength PC filaments for fused deposition modeling: These materials offer improved impact resistance compared to other commercially available PC filaments and can be processed at standard PC conditions. Potential advantages include reduced part damage in secondary operations, and higher levels of performance in end-use applications.
— The new filaments work with Stratasys Fortus printers, and are based on the ULTEM polyetherimide (PEI) resin, CYCOLAC acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS) resin and LEXAN polycarbonate (PC) resins. They have the same composition as SABIC’s injection molding grades.
— The ULTEM (PEI) filament handles applications that require high heat resistance, high strength, and low flame, smoke and toxicity (FST). ULTEM AM9085F filament – is a high-performance PEI product manufactured from ULTEM 9085 resin. It offers high heat resistance and mechanical strength, is UL94 V-0 compliant at 1.5 and 3.0 mm, and meets FAR 25.853 and OSU 65/65 requirements with low FST evolution. It is available in black and natural (unpigmented) colors.
— CYCOLAC AMMG94F filament –is a general-purpose ABS product manufactured from CYCOLAC MG94 resin. It provides a balance of properties suitable for a range of applications, and is UL94 HB compliant at 3.0 mm. It is available in black, white and natural (unpigmented) colors.
— LEXAN AM1110F filament – is a general-purpose PC product manufactured from LEXAN HF1110 resin. It provides thermal properties higher than those of general-purpose ABS filaments, is UL94 V-2 compliant at 3.0 mm and is available in white.
The nominal diameter of all SABIC’s filament products is 1.79 mm ± 0.05 mm and they are available in a 1510cc spool size.
Its developmental materials for fused deposition modeling can offer improved performance versus currently available products. These materials include:
— High impact strength polycarbonate filament that can withstand high-impact end-use conditions
— Polycarbonate and ULTEM healthcare filaments made with SABIC healthcare grade resins. These materials offer excellent mechanical performance, sterilizability, and biocompatibility
— High-impact strength ULTEM filament designed with the benefits of ULTEM 9085 resin but with greater toughness
— Flame, smoke and toxicity compliant polycarbonate filament for use in demanding aerospace applications
— EXTEM thermoplastic polyimide filament with heat resistance exceeding that of ULTEM filament
— Breakaway support materials for SABIC’s ULTEM, PC, and ABS filaments
Large format printing
SABIC also introduced a family of high-performance Thermocomp AM compounds that address the unique requirements of large format additive manufacturing (LFAM). SABIC developed print parameters and mechanical properties for the materials using test specimens printed on the company’s in-house big area additive manufacturing (BAAM) machine. Reinforced with carbon or glass fibers for added strength, the compounds can be used for applications in the tooling, aerospace, automotive and defense industries.
SABIC’s first eight reinforced Thermocomp AM compounds are based on four of the company’s amorphous resins: acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS), polyphenylene ether (PPE), polycarbonate (PC) and polyetherimide (PEI). These resins exhibit good creep behavior versus semi-crystalline resins, and reduced deformation under constant pressure. The materials exhibit lower shrinkage during cooling, demonstrating greater dimensional stability and less thermal expansion during part use.
— ABS-based compounds have low warpage and good print surface quality, useful for a range of applications and tooling, including thermoforming and vacuum forming.
— PPE-based compounds offer lower thermal expansion, good hydrolytic stability, a high strength-to-weight ratio and high-temperature performance compared to ABS.
— PC-based compounds deliver high stiffness, high-temperature performance and high throughput compared to ABS and PPE, as well as good ductility and a smooth surface finish.
— PEI-based compounds, developed from SABIC’s flame-retardant ULTEM resins, provide low thermal expansion, high-temperature performance, good strength-to-weight ratio, high modulus and low creep.
Each of the Thermocomp AM materials is reinforced with carbon or glass fiber, depending on the degree of stiffness and dimensional stability required.
SABIC is currently developing new compounds based on semi-crystalline resins such as PBT, PA, PPS and PEEK to address the needs for large format materials with improved chemical resistance and stiffness.”