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Additive Manufacturing Resources
June 30, 2021
Materialise has introduced a new service for more sustainable 3D printing. The company’s Bluesint PA 12 service makes it possible to 3D print with up to 100 percent re-used powder, significantly reducing powder waste, and offers customers a more sustainable option for 3D printing. Materialise announced the material innovation last year, and following a beta program for selected customers the company has now made its Bluesint PA 12 service broadly available.
“3D printing has established itself as a powerful and sustainable manufacturing solution for the production of smaller, customized parts by enabling localized production, but it is vital that our industry continues to invest in new ways to make the 3D printing process itself more sustainable”, said Jurgen Laudus, vice president and general manager of Materialise Manufacturing. “Through innovations like our Bluesint PA 12 service, Materialise empowers its customers to make a choice for sustainability.”
According to the company, with selective laser sintering up to 70 percent of the powder is down-cycled or becomes waste. With Bluesint the waste powder can be given a second life to print new parts, creating a path toward eliminating waste in 3D printing.
Bluesint PA 12 could also reduce CO2 emissions, the company says. The production of each kilogram of standard PA 12 powder generates more than seven kilograms of CO2. By reducing the need for new material production, Bluesint PA 12 could decrease CO2 emissions from powder production by approximately 30 percent.
The availability of Materialise’s Bluesint PA 12 service follows an extensive beta program for selected customers. The Maggie Program, a Belgium-based non-profit organization that builds multi-functional shelters for local communities, participated in the testing program for the production of their shelters.
“We rely on the flexibility of 3D printing to address some of the manufacturing challenges we faced for the production of certain parts of our shelters”, says Benjamin Denef, CEO and Founder of Maggie Program vzw and DMOA architects. “With Bluesint PA 12, Materialise now gives us the possibility to manufacture these parts in a more sustainable way with similar mechanical properties. We are always looking for new ways to reduce our environmental footprint and Bluesint PA 12 allows us to make a manufacturing choice not only based on technical specifications but also on the environmental impact.”
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