Johnson Matthey (JM; London, www.matthey.com) announced the opening of a new state-of-the-art ceramic 3D printing facility in Royston, U.K.
Currently, JM produces bespoke ceramic products with flexible geometries and feature sizes down to just 400 µm. This 3D printing process offers a cost effective solution for producing small complex ceramics on a large scale.
The new R&D laboratory will enable development of a greater understanding of 3D printing; characterizing powders and inks to allow faster development and more effective solutions for customers.
Sam O’Callaghan, Research Group Leader said, “This new laboratory is a great step forward for Johnson Matthey. The cutting-edge technology will help us develop our 3D printing capabilities and offer customers truly bespoke solutions.”
In 3D printing, particle size distribution is an important factor, but shape can also play a significant role. The new QiCPic image analysis sensor allows both to be measured simultaneously in a dry atmosphere similar to the ‘in use’ environment.
The new lab will also improve ink characterisation techniques using a PixDro ink jet printer, fitted with same printhead system installed across all of the R&D prototype and pilot plant printers. This allows diversity, as well as cost-saving experiments, assessing alternative suppliers and reagents. The new lab also features a mixer torque rheometer that allows powder-ink interactions to be measured.
For more information on 3d printing with ceramics, read Cutting-Edge Composites: Materials for a New Era.
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