Fraunhofer-Center HTL develops and manufactures prototypes and small series of technical ceramics with 3D printing using a CeraFab 7500 printer of the Lithoz GmbH. This unit produces the ceramic component in layers by stereolithography and LCM methods (Layerwise Ceramic Manufacturing). A photosensitive ceramic slurry is through an exposure mask with light in the visible range selectively irradiated and thereby hardened. The additively produced green part is subsequently debindered and sintered to a dense technical ceramic.
By applying this additive manufacturing method, it is possible to produce filigree and complex components from technical ceramics. This way, expensive post-processing steps can be minimized or completely avoided. The printed parts have a high density, good mechanical stability and high surface quality along with, at the same time, complex geometrical structures.
At Fraunhofer-Center HTL, the scope of services for the additive manufacturing of technical ceramics ranges from 3D CAD-based part design and construction through 3D printing of first plastic samples up to feasibility studies and the additive manufacturing of ceramic components. The scope is completed by the option of component-specific optimization of the debinding and sinter process management usingThermoOptical Measurement methods (TOM) (see Raether, F.: Parameters of Inherently Homogeneous Sintering Processes as well as Ziebold, H.; Raether, F.; Seifert, G.: Radical Time Reduction of Debinding Processes by Combined in-situ Measurements and Simulation as well as Raether, F.: The kinetic field - a versatile tool for prediction and analysis of heating processes).