Bringing Engineered Materials to Additive Manufacturing
Ian Wright posted on January 22, 2019 |
(Image courtesy of Jabil.)
Pallets of Jabil Engineered Material in filament form are prepared for shipment to Jabil customers and distribution partners. (Image courtesy of Jabil.)
Global product solutions company, Jabil, has introduced what it describes as a complete solution for creating, integrating and validating custom engineered materials for additive manufacturing. Jabil Engineered Materials is aiming to further the adoption of 3D printing in manufacturing applications.

“Jabil is taking advantage of its rich history in materials science innovation to advance the entire additive manufacturing market forward and produce custom materials in weeks—not months,” said John Dulchinos, vice president of digital manufacturing, Jabil. “Our ability to integrate new engineered materials into our ecosystem of 3D printers and rigorous processes will transform a new generation of additive manufacturing applications, including those for heavily regulated industries, such as aerospace, automotive, industrial and healthcare.”

According to a 2019 survey of 3D printing stakeholders sponsored by Jabil, the expected growth rates for use of 3D printing have skyrocketed despite lingering challenges with part quality and materials. More than half of the 300 survey participants reported that the cost and availability of materials is an obstacle for increasing 3D printing adoption within their organizations.

(Image courtesy of Jabil.)

Jabil Additive Manufacturing experts and chemists mix different raw materials during the formulation of Jabil Engineered Materials. (Image courtesy of Jabil.)

Jabil will evaluate, qualify and validate materials alongside certified machines and processes as part of an integrated solution that matches specific part performance with application requirements. This comprehensive approach is intended to ensure greater availability of unique materials while reducing time-to-market and cost. Additionally, Jabil will optimize the performance of specific materials on multiple 3D printers.

New Materials Innovation Center Opens in Minnesota

As part of this new effort, Jabil has opened an ISO 9001 QMS-certified Materials Innovation Center in Minnesota for polymer formulations and compound development. Additive manufacturing engineers, chemists, materials scientists and production experts at the Center will consult with customers, leverage Jabil’s materials science innovations and oversee each step of making custom powders and filaments.

(Image courtesy of Jabil.)

As part of Jabil’s integrated MPM approach, each engineered material undergoes rigorous strength testing to validate durability and performance for a variety of applications. (Image courtesy of Jabil.)

According to Jabil, the rapid iteration and certified production of these engineered materials will provide customers with a faster path from prototyping to production than currently available. Value-added attributes include reinforcement, flame retardance, conductivity, lubrication, Electrostatic Dissipative (ESD) and other engineered characteristics. The Center also offers compounding, extrusion and powder creation services as well as complete system integration on standard, open source platforms supported by Fused Filament Fabrication (FFF), Selective Laser Sintering (SLS) and High-Speed Sintering (HSS) equipment.

“As an emerging digital manufacturing powerhouse, Jabil is clearing the major obstacles to delivering robust, certifiable, traceable production solutions for additive manufacturing,” said Richard D’Aveni, Dartmouth Tuck professor and author of the new book, THE PAN-INDUSTRIAL REVOLUTION: How New Manufacturing Titans Will Transform the World. “By smoothly interconnecting 3D printing machines, processes and materials across its global Additive Manufacturing Network, Jabil is poised to propel the entire additive manufacturing market forward with speed and agility.”

Jabil Engineered Materials will be available starting this month through distribution partners, including Chase Plastics and Channel Prime Alliance. Print profiles for Jabil Engineered Materials also will be available through Ultimaker Cura software with links to Jabil’s distribution partners.

For more on Jabil, watch The Future of Additive Manufacturing: A Profitable Lot Size of One.

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