3D Systems and EMS-GRILTECH have established a strategic partnership by creating and introducing to the market an innovative plastic material in the form of a nylon copolymer – DuraForm PAx Natural. This material has properties similar to injection-molded plastics and is characterized by high impact strength and high elongation at break in any direction. DuraForm PAx Natural is designed to be used with any SLS 3D printer, regardless of manufacturer – making it easy to integrate into existing production processes. 3D Systems has become the exclusive distributor of the material.

DuraForm PAx can be used to produce heavy-duty, lightweight, production-grade parts for applications such as orthoses, tool holders, splints and braces, floating hinges, fluid reservoirs, and housings that require high toughness and strength. The material is printed at the low temperature of 120°C as for 3D printing, which significantly facilitates both the production process itself and subsequent post-processing. Compared to other polyamide materials such as PA-11 and PA-12, DuraForm PAx Natural significantly reduces parts delivery times, which not only helps service offices and manufacturers stay competitive, but also speeds up supply chains.

The low temperature 3D printing of the material enables high throughput, and marking it as a clean running material results in low machine maintenance costs. Thanks to the lower printing temperature, parts can be ready for shipment the day after receiving the order. Similar PA12 parts typically take another day to cool down before being ready for shipment.

DuraForm PAx Natural has an impressive long-term stability of more than five years indoors in terms of mechanical properties and color. When parts are post-treated with steam honing, the finished parts have excellent transparency and a smooth finish, increasing the range of applications in which this material can be used. Additionally, steam honed DuraForm PAx Natural shifts the yield elongation beyond that of PA-11 and PA-12 materials. The material also has high reuse rates (30% refresh rate is recommended) which helps to reduce waste and lower production costs.

DuraForm PAx Natural receives positive feedback from the first end users. It fundamentally alters the cost structure of SLS technology, and also enables profitable production of parts that were previously difficult to justify using powder material. The material has mechanical properties similar to polypropylene, has high elongation, high impact strength and offers a high recycling rate.

Source: www.3dsystems.com
Photo: www.3dsystems.com (press materials / all rights reserved)

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