Additive Manufacturing Collaboration Uses Ink-Jet Based Technology for Ceramic Production

Oerlikon AM and Xjet are collaborating on the first global installation of transformational inkjet-based technology for the additive production of ceramic parts.

XJet Ltd., the additive manufacturing company behind NanoParticle Jetting™ (NPJ) technology, recently announced the first global installation of its XJet Carmel 1400 additive manufacturing (AM) system at Oerlikon AM’s production site in Barleben. A business unit of the Oerlikon Group, Oerlikon AM offers integrated expertise and services in the field of AM along the entire value chain. With XJet’s Carmel 1400 AM system, Oerlikon AM is reportedly the first company worldwide to premier a new transformational inkjet-based technology for the additive production of ceramic parts.

“The cooperation with XJet is an exciting opportunity for us to expand our AM offering beyond metals and into ceramics,” said Andreas Berkau, head of AM Service Europe, Oerlikon Business Unit (BU) AM. “With over 20 years in the industry, we have established ourselves as a leading international supplier of AM parts that meet evolving industry needs. This collaboration enables us to stay ahead of technology developments and maintain our technology leadership.”

System Details

The XJet Carmel 1400, featuring the company’s patented NPJ technology, has the ability to print separate nanoparticle “inks” or fluids for the build and support material. According to the company, this enables ceramic or metal parts to be produced with the ease and versatility that one associates with inkjet printing.

The XJet Carmel 1400 AM prints layers as fine as only a few microns thick. As a result, this technology allows complex geometries with superfine details from as little as 0.1 mm to be created in a simple and safe process. The system features a 1,400 cm2 build tray, which is reportedly one of the industry’s largest and able to handle high-capacity production. The XJet Carmel 1400 is suitable for a wide range of AM applications in diverse industries, from healthcare to manufacturing.

“We are proud to team up with Oerlikon, a leading global technology and engineering group and one of the world’s leading AM service providers,” said Hanan Gothait, CEO and founder of XJet. “Working together, Oerlikon AM and XJet are taking a lead in the AM revolution, empowered by our game-changing NPJ technology for metal and ceramic AM.”

Field Testing

Oerlikon’s AM part production site in Barleben, Germany, began field testing using the XJet AM system at the end of 2017. Initially, the AM system is configured to manufacture ceramic parts (zirconia). At a later stage, the system can also be used to manufacture metal components that require fine details.

“This collaboration with XJet is a natural extension of Oerlikon AM’s vision and further strengthens our technology offering and leadership position in the field of AM,” said Florian Mauerer, head of Oerlikon BU AM. “We are pleased to be partnering with the XJet team, which is comprised of top veterans in the global AM industry. We look forward to a meaningful partnership in order to provide the best possible AM solutions along the entire value chain to customers in diverse manufacturing industries.”

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