Not many high performance polymers are available for AM processes. A widespread manufacturing process is the Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM). In the FDM process, the semi-finished product is a thermoplastic polymer filament. In a FDM head the filament is melted and forced through a heated nozzle. A layer is generated by the movement of the head along the x- and y-axis and the simultaneous extrusion of melted polymer. By the deposition of various layers, three-dimensional components can be produced.
Theoretically, it would be possible to process each thermoplastic polymer. However, for professional FDM systems only a small number of various starting materials can be received. These materials are provided by the machine manufacturers and the material properties are often insufficiently known. Additionally, not many high performance polymers are available for the AM process and the available high performance materials, like Ultem 9085 or Ultem 1010 are very expensive. At the moment, the process qualification for new polymers, using known material data, is not assessable and the qualification of processing is made only experimentally.
The aim of the project is to investigate the process qualification for different materials, which are interesting for the DMRC partners. For this purpose, as a first step micro granules have to be processed to produce FDM-processible monofilaments. If the production of FDM monofilaments is practicable, the selected materials are processed on an open source Fused Deposition Modeling system and afterwards the processability should be improved. Characteristic values have to be determined for the different materials. Findings of a prior bilateral project can be used for this project.