Multi Jet Fusion is an industrial 3D printing process used for the rapid manufacture of prototypes, and quality production parts. The end-use parts exhibit isotropic properties in all axes, which translates to consistent mechanical properties throughout the part. This results in as printed parts that require little post-processing, and parts exhibit many properties including vibration dampening, durability and water-tightness.
A MJF printer uses an inkjet array to selectively apply both fusing and detailing agents across a bed of nylon powder. After that, heating elements fuse each layer into a solid, layer by layer until the parts are complete. Completed builds are then moved from the printer to a processing station to be cooled, recycling the loose powder for the next build. De-powdered parts are bead blasted to remove residual powder before post finishing to customer specifications.
Multiple build platforms and ISO certified processes enables GoProto’s MJF printers to run around the clock, 7 days a week. Whether it is one part or one hundred, MJF and GoProto enable the production of end-use custom parts in your hands in as little as 2 days
Additive manufacturing has progressed beyond a means to creating the occasional prototype. To date, more than a 100 million parts are produced with HP’s MJF process. Automotive is amongst the first industries to undergo a shift to electrification. Companies such as Ford have pioneered a sustainability partnership with HP to reuse 3D printed materials into vehicle parts. General Motors has also utilised MJF for manufacturing HVAC ducts. A MJF part is comparable to parts created by injection molding and is stronger than components created by fused deposition modeling, which is why MJF technology is the 3D printing solution for functional parts in many industries.
Ali Shabbir, Engineering Group Manager for Product Applications, General Motors says “We holistically evaluate all the technologies that we typically use for our production applications-which can be parts or tools. Processes that have higher throughput and integral isotropic material properties are typically better suited in the plastics space. For instance, we are using HP’s Multi Jet Fusion technology for Cadillac V-Series HVAC ducts. Application selection is absolutely paramount for using AM for production components. There are certainly things we need to do to ensure repeatable quality over time, but most of the challenge has to do with the identification and development of the application itself. You want to make sure that you’re not just 3D printing something because it’s cool, but that it actually makes sense, whether it’s leveraging additive-only design, or part consolidation, or lightweighting. These are some of the considerations for picking the right application, and then from there you can scale.”
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