Voxeljet has filed a patent for a method of producing three-dimensional molded parts through layering. The method involves regulating the moisture content of the build material mixture using one or more humectants, such as phosphoric acid, lactic acid, or polyethylene glycol. The process includes applying an admixture of build material and activators, selectively applying a binder fluid, polymerizing the binder fluid, and repeating these steps until the desired molded part is created. GlobalData’s report on Voxeljet gives a 360-degree view of the company including its patenting strategy. Buy the report here.
According to GlobalData’s company profile on Voxeljet, Additive manufacturing monitoring sensors was a key innovation area identified from patents. Voxeljet's grant share as of September 2023 was 44%. Grant share is based on the ratio of number of grants to total number of patents.
Method for producing 3d molded parts with regulated moisture content
A recently filed patent (Publication Number: US20230226755A1) describes a method for producing three-dimensional molded parts using layering techniques. The method involves several steps, including applying an admixture of particulate build material and activators to a build space, selectively applying a binder fluid, polymerizing the binder fluid, and repeating these steps until the desired molded part is produced. The activators used in the method include humectants, such as phosphoric acid, lactic acid, sodium chloride, and polyethylene glycol, which help regulate the moisture content of the admixture.
The patent also mentions that the admixture may include water and/or liquid bridges between particles of the particulate build material. Additionally, there is a step of storing the admixture before introducing it to the coater. The particulate build material can include sand, and the activators can be acids like sulfuric acid or p-toluenesulfonic acid. The average grain size of the particulate material is between 100 µm to 500 µm.
Furthermore, the patent describes a variant of the method where the binder fluid includes 50 to 95 weight percent furfuryl alcohol. This variant also includes the use of a wetting agent, adhesive, or cross-linking agent in the binder. The other steps of the method remain the same.
The patent also mentions the possibility of using a device that includes a coater and a print head for implementing the method. Additionally, it discusses the production of molded bodies, such as casting molds or cores for foundry processes or lamination processes. These processes can include concrete, mineral, or reactive polymer casting.
In summary, the patent describes a method for producing three-dimensional molded parts using layering techniques and various activators and binder fluids. It also mentions the use of a device with a coater and print head, as well as the production of molded bodies for foundry and lamination processes.