Tethon 3D have just unveiled plans to develop a new ceramic and metal desktop DLP printer. The company has already procured a grant from Nebraska Department of Economic Development to go ahead with the project. The new multi-material printer will be unique in the realm of 3D printers, being designed for both metal feedstock and ceramics with photo-sensitive processing, rather than primarily for photo-polymer plastics.
“By optimizing a DLP printer for ceramics and metals and formulating our materials specifically for this enhanced printer, the industry can produce stronger and higher resolution ceramic and metal 3D printed parts,” states Keran Linder, the CEO of Tethon 3D.
Tethon already specialises in the production of ceramic filaments but with this project they are venturing into the realm of printing hardware. Although the company has not disclosed the exact sum of the grant, we do know that they will work side by side with the University of Nebraska engineers Bai Cui, PhD, an expert in ceramic AM materials and Prahalada Rao, PhD, a specialist in 3D printing hardware.
Ceramic & Metal
The purpose of the project is to make proprietary DLP technology that works with ceramics and metals while also being commercially available. While quite a few DLP and SLA machines can process metal and ceramic, there is a catch. Most of these processes are for plastic photopolymers, thus being less suitable for processing other materials.
The project will set out to optimise a process for metal and ceramics as the primary objective. The companies believe that a new method is necessary to bring out the best prints possible. It will also allow for better resolution and more freedom for the designers who use it. A cermic/metal process would allow both companies to fine-tune the materials as well.
“We are passionate about creating new markets, fabricating designs that were previously impossible and disrupting existing manufacturing approaches,” says Linder.
Featured image courtesy of Teflon 3D.