igus develops stable SLS material for 3D printing of components

No plastic waste is produced as the excess powder can be used several times and printed parts can be recycled. The parts made of the new SLS powder - like all igus materials - need no additional lubrication and are very structurally stable.
igus develops stable SLS material for 3D printing of components

In a bid to ensure safety and reliability of production in the electronics and semiconductor industry, components with electrostatically conductive properties are required. Even a small electric shock can destroy expensive production lines. To overcome this hurdle, Igus, a globally leading manufacturer of energy chain systems and polymer plain bearings, has developed a new stable material for the Selective Laser Sintering (SLS) method so that users can make their wearing parts with ESD properties flexibly and cost-effectively. The lubrication-free special parts made of iglidur I8-ESD can be printed and shipped within just few days.

Wear-resistant parts in the electronics and semiconductor industry are not only required to have a long service life but must also be electrostatically conductive, because a surge of electrostatic charge that is not dissipated by an insulating material can easily destroy the product. For the fast additive manufacture of electrostatically conductive special parts, igus has now developed a new iglidur tribo-polymer. iglidur I8-ESD is the third material that igus offers for the SLS method. The advantages of this method are evident: the user has a great deal of design freedom and can make the component without any tool costs. Moreover, no plastic waste is produced as the excess powder can be used several times and printed parts can be recycled. The parts made of the new SLS powder - like all igus materials - need no additional lubrication and are very structurally stable. \

"With iglidur I8-ESD, we now include a tribo-polymer in our product range that has a resistance of 3x107 ? x cm. In addition, the material is inherently black. As a result, subsequent colouring is not necessary, whereby costs are lowered and the delivery time is improved", explains Tom Krause, Head of Business Unit Additive Manufacturing at igus GmbH.

He further continues, "The user receives a very durable component that comes with all the desirable ESD properties."

Better abrasion resistance

The igus tribo-polymers undergo numerous tests in the igus 3,800 square-metre test laboratory. Here a pivoting test showed that the abrasion resistance of a sintered iglidur I8-ESD wear-resistant part is twice as great as that of a PA12 sintered component. iglidur I8-ESD was also convincing in a linear wear test. igus currently offers iglidur I8-ESD in the webshop as SLS powder for processing in the customer's own facility or for manufacture of a component in the igus 3D printing service. For the latter purpose, the user can simply send the STEP file for the part required to igus. Here, the product is printed within three days, and there is no minimum order quantity.

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