Evonik and the Chinese company UnionTech has agreed to set up a joint R&D laboratory for 3D printing technology in Shanghai, China.

To develop industrial-scale 3D printing solutions based on high-performance photopolymer resins
Close collaboration between material and machine manufacturers is essential to open up new 3D printing applications

Evonik and the Chinese company UnionTech has agreed to set up a joint R&D laboratory for 3D printing technology in Shanghai, China.

With the capacities in material research, equipment & processes, and application research of the two companies, the laboratory aims to develop material solutions for industrial 3D applications. As planned, the lab will conduct photopolymer materials testing for application development. Some target markets include industrial manufacturing, electrical and electronic, consumer goods, medical care and other sectors.

“Evonik is committed to driving industrial-scale 3D printing as manufacturing technology across the entire value chain through ready-to-use material formulations.” said Toni Schreibweiss, Vice President and General Manager for High-Performance Polymers Asia Pacific at Evonik, “The close collaboration between material and machine manufacturers is essential to open up new 3D printing applications. With the joint lab, Evonik expects an accelerated market access for new photopolymer products, especially in the very fast-growing Chinese market. We will bring our expertise in materials development and come up with innovative and diverse solutions for customers in a faster and more efficient way.

Founded in 2000, UnionTech is the market leader in Asia for ultra-large size industrial printers. The company develops and manufactures printers, supplies printing materials through subsidiaries and offers additive manufacturing as a service provider. “We envision the future of 3D printing technology as a shift from ‘prototyping' to ‘industrial-scale production,” where material innovation plays a crucial role. The establishment of the joint lab is expected to reinforce the partnership between the two companies. We plan to explore open innovation models, so as to better serve customers and contribute to the development of the industry.” said Jason Ma, CEO of UnionTech.

Photopolymer is a common 3D printing material featuring superior mechanical performance, high precision, and fast printing speed. With this material, the production of very complex workpieces is possible, which have a much smoother structure than with other 3D materials. Typical markets include automotive and aircraft manufacturers as well as industrial parts or special shoes. It therefore has a broad prospect for development.

Evonik recently launched a new product line of photopolymer for industrial 3D printing applications. The first three ready-to-use formulations of the family are all single-component systems and possess excellent mechanical properties such as stable printing performance and good aging resistance. It thus makes them ideal material solutions for industrial-scale production using stereolithography-based 3D printers.

In 2020, Evonik acquired a minority stake in UnionTech through its Venture Capital unit and since then the two companies have worked together in a number of additive manufacturing projects.
www.evonik.com

 

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