As well as functional integration and multi-component technology, ARBURG Plastic Freeforming (APF) also enables standard parts to be individualised. With our freeformer, design freedom meets material diversity.
The industrial additive manufacturing of individual medical implants or functional assemblies for automation technology are just two of many areas for which APF is the ideal choice. With its revolutionary technology, the freeformer will open up a whole range of new possibilities for you – whichever industry you are working in. For premium quality at affordable unit costs, every time.
- Individual parts and low-volume production with original materials
- Functional integration, e.g. closures with click effect
- Complex, resilient hard/soft components
- Mass customisation in 3D
- Use of certified original materials (e.g. medical materials or materials with flame protection)
Wide selection of approved materials available
Compatible materials for the APF process include biocompatible, resorbable and sterilisable original materials as well as qualified original materials with FDA approval. Among them are ABS, amorphous PA and PC, elastic TPU, soft SEBS and semi-crystalline PP as well as PLLA and other special original materials. Production in a clean room environment is also possible. Optional robot interfaces even support the automation of additive manufacturing and the integration of the freeformer into networked production lines with reliable documentation.
Cost-effective use with lightweight construction
The manufacture of honeycomb structures or bionically optimised components on freeformers helps you to make savings not only in terms of expensive materials but also where weight and time are concerned. Our solution is lightweight construction. It is generally used wherever anything is set in motion – so in the automotive sector in which you are working, for example, or in transportation and logistics.
Less weight, greater degrees of freedom
In additive manufacturing, aerospace is one of the drivers of lightweight construction: it is all about comparatively low unit counts and every single gram that causes costs to increase. Your additive manufacturing hits the back of the net with high degrees of freedom in terms of component design and geometry. Resource conservation and sustainability are also important, of course. Furthermore, the freeformer is able to work with Ultem 9085, a high-temperature plastic which has been approved for aerospace applications, at build chamber temperatures of up to 200 °C.
Functional integration and individualisation in standard production
Covers for mobile phones, vases, furniture handles and even glasses frames – individualised and customised products are everywhere in the consumer goods sector. The sector often involves applications which would either be hugely complicated to achieve or simply not possible at all without additive manufacturing. Above all, you benefit from simplified production combined with reduced costs. The freeformer is even capable of working with food-safe and FDA-certified materials.
A perfect fit guaranteed
Multi-materials processing, flame protection, functional integration, miniaturisation or the combination of different processes – these are the challenges for industrial additive manufacturing in the electronics sector. Small components have to be adapted to provide the perfect fit for the environment in which they are being used, multi-sensor units have to fit inside tiny spaces, freedom of configuration is vital, and the manufacturing process has to be cost-effective. This is achieved with the help of printed conductors, integrated plug contacts or printed circuit boards and design freedom in the development of parts on the freeformer. The freeformer is also able to work with electrically conductive materials, which until now could not be used in additive manufacturing.
Cooperation with research and education
Collaboration between educational establishments and research institutions and ARBURG in the field of industrial additive manufacturing is beneficial for both sides. This is true both from a technical point of view with freely programmable parameters and with regard to the qualification of reference materials for the open system. Practical research and development have contributed to the introduction of the rotary axis and fibre infeed on the freeformer, for example, making the additive manufacturing of fibre-reinforced and resilient lightweight components without restrictions possible for you.