New Methods in Additive Manufacturing

At Fraunhofer Center HTL, new methods for additive manufacturing are being developed and existing ones are being improved. The goal of these developments is to expand the state of the art and subsequently qualify the processes for industrial component production. Future development needs for new additive manufacturing processes are derived from market and customer requirements. Concepts for process implementation are then developed and coordinated with the customer. Subsequently, prototype systems for additive manufacturing can be built according to customer needs.

Requirements for new additive manufacturing processes include, among other things, high green densities, in-situ process control during printing, scalability and cost-effectiveness of the processes, and the ability for 3D multi-material printing. At the same time, the processes must be economically feasible.

Slurry-Based 3D Printing
slurry-based 3D printing
© Fraunhofer Center HTL
Schematic diagram of the slurry-based 3D printing (FFS process)
Slurry printer
© Fraunhofer Center HTL
Slurry printer designed and built at the HTL

One current development deals with slurry-based 3D printing (Free Flow Structuring, FFS). The process combines productive and cost-effective binder jetting with the use of liquid suspensions as starting materials to produce dense parts with high quality in a single print job with high productivity. With regard to later industrial mass production, the process is designed to also produce dense parts with large dimensions. At the same time, the process, like powder-based binder jetting, offers an enormous variety of materials. Metals, ceramics, glass materials, and composites, among others, can be processed. Parallel to process development, the associated prototype systems have been built.

Service Offering:

  • Customized analysis and evaluation of potentials in additive manufacturing
  • Development of new additive manufacturing processes for industrial component production
  • Optimization of existing manufacturing processes according to customer requirements
  • Design and construction of prototype systems for additive manufacturing
  • Development of individual starting materials for new 3D printing processes
  • Development of processes for 3D (multi-material) printing