On 28 January 2020, Lubrizol Engineered Polymers announced the commercial launch of its thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) Estane 3D TPU M95A, which is said to be the only TPU certified for HP’s Multi Jet Fusion 4200 series 3D printing solution.
According to Lubrizol, the product has been developed in close collaboration with HP. The materials development work was supported by an extensive beta testing programme conducted by ZiggZagg NV, a Belgian 3D printing service provider and member of HP’s Digital Manufacturing Network. This network is a global community of digital manufacturing service providers with the capabilities to help design, produce, and deliver plastic and metal final parts at scale leveraging HP‘s Multi Jet Fusion and Metal Jet 3D printing solutions.
The launch of Estane 3D TPU M95A will allow its customers to effectively target a variety of commercial TPU applications with an advanced additive manufacturing technology, said Lubrizol. Applications for the new material include footwear and prostheses (lightweight performance through lattice structures, optimised for cushioning applications), wearables (skin contact certification pending), seals (oil resistance) and a wide variety of industrial applications.
The flexible thermoplastic material is said to offer good processing and cold unpacking properties similar to PA12 while also providing high elongation and tensile strength. In addition, it is said to feature good energy rebound, high impact absorption, a low abrasion rate and good compression. These properties make it an ideal solution for newly designed prototyping and scale-up manufacturing applications while enabling consistent part quality and a cost-efficient solution, said the manufacturer.
“3D printing technology is revolutionising the manufacturing industry and changing the way we design and produce component parts,” said Gert-Jan Nijhuis, director global strategic marketing for Lubrizol. He added: “We are pleased to announce the commercial release of Estane 3D TPU M95A, which was developed with mass production and ease of post-processing in mind. We look forward to continuing the productive relationship between Lubrizol and HP to further expand our portfolio, maximising value for our customers and enabling the digital industrial revolution.”