Huntsman has officially introduced its range of Iroprint additive manufacturing resins, powders and filaments to the global plastics market at K 2019 in Düsseldorf, Germany. During the trade show, visitors to the company’s stand were able to watch the new 3D printing materials in action – with an Iroprint F filament product printed on an Ultimaker S5 machine. There also were a number of 3D printed items for visitors to see and touch, demonstrating the elasticity of the additive manufacturing materials, which are soft and flexible, yet tough and strong.
Huntsman’s Iroprint additive manufacturing platform contains three different kinds of urethane-based materials:
- Iroprint F filaments are a range of thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) materials, with a consistent diameter, designed for use with fused filament fabrication (FFF) and other extrusion-based printing methods
- Iroprint R are soft, durable, one-component liquid resin systems for 3D printing via stereolithography (SLA), digital light processing (DLP) and other radiation-curing methods
- Iroprint P are TPU powder-based materials for high speed sintering (HSS) and selective laser sintering (SLS) forms of printing.
The material that was printed at K 2019 was Iroprint F 80213 filament – a soft TPU with a hardness of 85 Shore A. Typically, soft TPU filaments are not easy to print, but Iroprint F 80213 is different – delivering less friction in filament guiding tubes, said Huntsman. The filament is a polyether-based TPU, which makes it hydrolysis resistant. Crucially, it is one of the softest and the only polyether-based TPU material qualified to work with the Ultimaker S5 – an easy-to-use desktop 3D printer.
Bart van As, Product Manager Materials at Ultimaker, said: “We see a great deal of customer interest in flexible materials. I am very happy to see that Huntsman’s new TPU filament prints so well on Ultimaker printers. It is a great addition to the Ultimaker Marketplace and opens up many new applications for our customers.”
Commenting, Stephane Peysson, Global Business Development Manager, at Huntsman, said: “Since unveiling our Iroprint additive manufacturing platform at the K preview in July, we’ve been busy dealing with enquiries from companies that are interested in using the materials. This includes printer companies that want to know more about what the range has to offer – as well as product designers in the footwear industry and beyond. We have some really exciting projects in the pipeline and are looking forward to having further interesting discussions at K with key decision makers from the materials world.”
Huntsman’s Iroprint additive manufacturing materials were designed with the needs of the footwear industry in mind. However, many other applications exist for this innovative platform of products, which delivers soft, flexible and durable properties. Additional application examples include objects that need to possess rubber-like characteristics such as seals and gaskets, consumer wearables, grips, flexible ducts, grommets, bushings and vibration dampening components.