A partnership has been formed between the 3D printer and the Illinois-based materials company Impossible Objects and the parts manufacturer Ricoh 3D to provide Ricoh’s European customers with lightweight composite parts.
The parts are manufactured by Impossible Objects using the CBAM process (Composite-based Additive Manufacturing). Using the proprietary CBAM technology, parts are made from long fiberboard made of composite materials. The approach can reportedly produce parts up to ten times faster than other AM technologies.
The main advantages of composites over traditional materials include higher strength-to-weight ratios, fewer geometric constraints, and higher chemical resistance.
“Composites will be an area of tremendous growth in additive manufacturing in the years to come,” said Mark Dickin, AM and manager of molding technology at Ricoh. “These new materials will change the game in a number of industries.”
Ricoh will now offer its customers parts printed from PEEK and PA12 nylon composites. More materials will be added soon.