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Binder Jet Metal 3D Printing Solution:HP Brings Metal Jet S100 to Market

Published on June 17 2022 by Exzellenc
Binder Jet Metal 3D Printing Solution:HP Brings Metal Jet S100 to Market

On September 12, 3D Printing Technology Reference noted that HP 's Metal Jet- based binder jet metal 3D printing solution was officially launched at the International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS). That's four years after it announced the technology in 2018. In mid-2021, HP announced that the Metal Jet digital manufacturing solution has been delivered to customers in some parts of the world, and is expected to enter the Chinese market in early 2022.

Its Metal Jet S100 has a form factor of 430x309x200mm, with six HP thermal inkjet printheads attached to two print bars for a total of 63,360 nozzles. The system is capable of accurately ejecting adhesive droplets up to 630 million nanograms in size at a resolution of 1200 dots per inch (dpi) per second.

The new Metal Jet technology is capable of producing functional end-of-life mechanical parts at a work efficiency dozens of times higher than other 3D printing technologies and at significantly lower costs than other binder jet molding systems.

In terms of production line, Metal Jet S100 adopts a modular design, which can install multiple equipment to form a continuous production line. Powder management station for powder mixing, sieving and loading of single or multiple printers; 4x redundant nozzles and double print bars for drastically reduced binder weight for reliability and repeatability; designed for industrial use Engineered for manufacturing, allowing for 7x24h uninterrupted manufacturing; the curing station will thermally cure the part before powder removal using a third-party system.

In terms of key components and materials, HP points out that it has the most efficient printheads (1200dpi, 4x nozzle redundancy, advanced error detection, high-speed calibration, easy replacement) and the most effective adhesives. Its developed latex binders feature long polymer chains tightly packed into particles dispersed in a liquid phase, enabling low carbon residue, low temperature cure, and higher precision, surface quality and green strength.

In terms of materials, it uses traditional MIM metal powder for printing, and the currently launched qualified materials are 316L and 17-4PH, which can meet the needs of customers in the industrial, medical, consumer and automotive industries.

Material distribution in Boeing 78 turbine engine

Since the release of HP's Metal Jet technology, it has partnered with customers such as GKN, Parmatech (a metal injection moulding manufacturer), Cobra Golf, Volkswagen, Wilo, Schneider Electric, and in particular Schneider has used the technology to produce optimized industrial metal air filter. This filter is very expensive to manufacture by traditional methods, and HP Metal Jet technology not only reduces production time, but also significantly reduces part weight and is 20% more compact.

Material distribution in Boeing 78 turbine engine

316L air filter produced by Schneider Electric using Metal Jet technology

The HP Metal JetS100 solution promises to enable geometry, density control, enabling lightweighting or integrating metal parts, breaking the possibilities of 3D printing. The system improves customer economics by reducing the process steps required to manufacture parts while reducing costs due to labor or complexity requirements, thereby increasing the efficiency of the entire supply chain.

Binder jetting could theoretically increase the productivity of metal 3D printing by a factor of ten, allowing layer-by-layer printing instead of point-by-point scanning. The parts do not require support removal and the properties are isotropic, making them more cost-effective than laser-based 3D printing. Additionally, HP printheads leverage decades of industrial thermal inkjet technology, offering advantages in delivering high resolution and system stability, making large-scale 3D metal parts a viable option for commercial manufacturing.

HP noted that the new Metal Jet S100 solution opens the door to the digital transformation of the global metal manufacturing industry, with a focus on customer-centric and design-led end-to-end supply chain solutions for software and hardware.

The Metal Jet S100 solution offers industrial production capabilities, integrated workflow, subscription and service offerings - giving customers unprecedented technological and business advantages to help them achieve their business transformation goals. The modular solution enables building units to be moved between four different sites, which means users can continue mass metal production on a large scale.

Since announcing the development of the groundbreaking Metal Jet technology in 2018, HP has been committed to developing the industry's most advanced commercial solutions for mass production of 3D metal, said Hewlett Packard Enterprise, global head and general manager of 3D Metal. 3D printed metal parts are a key driver of digital transformation, and the new Metal Jet S100 solution will provide customers with world-class metal products, from initial design to production, and more importantly, help them realize the limitless potential of digital manufacturing.

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