Advance Laser Materials (ALM) Releases Four New Powders Powered by BASF

Production grade powders enable new application opportunities.

“Forward AM’s Ultrasint® Polypropylene is fully weldable and its translucency and media-tightness make it perfect for tanks and reservoir prototypes,” said Jeremy Vos, Automotive and Powderbed Manager, BASF. “The ability to leverage high-performance AM materials to do short run production will open up new opportunities for customers in the automotive industry.”

 

Press Release   •   October 2020

ALM and BASF

Temple, Texas, October 1, 2020 – Advanced Laser Materials (ALM), an EOS company and leader in materials development for industrial 3D printing and additive manufacturing (AM), and BASF 3D Printing Solutions, have signed a distribution agreement for four new Forward AM by BASF powder solutions; three in Polyamide 6 (PA6): Ultrasint® PA6 FR, Ultrasint® PA6 MF, Ultrasint® PA6 LM, and one in polypropylene (PP): Ultrasint® PP nat 01.

The new PA6 and PP powders will be sold by ALM on behalf of BASF.

Forward AM’s PA6 solutions boast a high Heat Deflection Temperature (HDT) leading to exceptional thermal resistance. They also feature in-particle fillers that ensure part consistency and create less waste through many builds.

  • Ultrasint® PA6 MF is the material of choice for advanced technical applications where properties of mechanically reinforced thermoplastics are needed. Besides reinforced PA6 being a very popular engineering material for highly loaded parts, Ultrasint® PA6 MF boasts extremely high rigidity, media tightness and enhanced thermal distortion performance – properties where other Powder Bed Fusion (PBF) materials often show limitations. Successful applications include Engine Brackets and a high voltage inverter housing used in a new Electric Vehicle.
  • Ultrasint® PA6 LM is a special powder material designed to maximize production accessibility to any PBF user. Thanks to its lower melting temperature compared to the other members of the Ultrasint® PA6 family, it enables lower processing temperatures which any PBF equipment can achieve. Its balanced property profile combines superior mechanical performance with outstanding thermal resistance. This advanced material can replace injection molded PA6 parts without compromise. Potential applications include engine valve train covers and air intake ducts.
  • Ultrasint® PA6 FR is an advanced engineering polymer powder containing a flame-retardant (FR) additive. Combining excellent mechanical and thermal performance with flammability requirements, it is especially suitable for applications in the electronics and public transportation sector. The halogen-free formulation based on PA6 makes the material unique in the 3D printing industry.

“PA6 has long been the most widely known polymer material used in automotive 3D printing, but also fairly low quality, until now,” said Donnie Vanelli, President of ALM. “What we’ve been able to do here, in coordination with BASF, is enable manufacturers to use the same material from prototype through production.”

In particular, the combination of the EOS INTEGRA P450 machine and Forward AM’s Ultrasint® PA6 MF will open up opportunities to print short run parts, thereby eliminating tooling costs and reducing overall part cost. Some automotive companies, with support from EOS’ Additive Minds applied engineering counselors and BASF’s versatile and flexible CAE competence simulation software, UltraSim®, have already begun exploring applications for this new dynamic material.

  • Ultrasint® PP nat 01 now harnesses the properties of polyolefins for PBF technologies, delivering the well-known characteristics of polypropylene, such as excellent chemical resistance, ductility and media tightness. Thanks to the successful integration of PP material into PBF technologies, individualized and functional serial production parts can now be printed rapidly on demand. The high rigidity of Ultrasint® PP nat 01 not only makes the material especially well-suited to technical applications, but also makes it an economically attractive alternative to commonly used PA12. Successful applications include automotive fluid bottles, and an aerospace sensor cover.

“Forward AM’s Ultrasint® Polypropylene is fully weldable and its translucency and media-tightness make it perfect for tanks and reservoir prototypes,” said Jeremy Vos, Automotive and Powderbed Manager, BASF. “The ability to leverage high-performance AM materials to do short run production will open up new opportunities for customers in the automotive industry.”

ALM and BASF partnered in the past on EOS’ flexible, industrial polymer, TPU 1301, which debuted at Formnext in 2019.

About ALM

Advanced Laser Materials (ALM) specializes in material research, development and consultation for industrial 3D printing and additive manufacturing. Founded in 2004, ALM remains focused on providing customers with application-specific, quality-tested materials and engineering support to meet the most complex product specifications and production requirements. ALM offers the largest selection of laser sintering solutions with onsite capabilities to produce standard and specialized materials in varying quantities. Based in Temple, Texas, ALM is a wholly owned subsidiary of EOS Group.

About 3D Printing Solutions

BASF 3D Printing Solutions GmbH, headquartered in Heidelberg, Germany, is a 100% subsidiary of BASF New Business GmbH. It focuses on establishing and expanding the business under the Forward AM brand with advanced materials, system solutions, components and services in the field of 3D printing. BASF 3D Printing Solutions is organized into startup-like structures to serve customers in the dynamic 3D printing market. It cooperates closely with the global research platforms and application technologies of various departments at BASF as well as with research institutes, universities, startups and industrial partners. Potential customers are primarily companies that intend to use 3D printing for industrial manufacturing. Typical industries include automotive, aerospace and consumer goods.

Contact:
Whitney McGoram
Airfoil Group
Tel.: 202.525.0606
Email: McGoram@airfoilgroup.com