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Fortify and Tethon 3D partner to develop technical ceramics

Exploring new 3D printing applications

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Boston-based 3D printing startup Fortify and Tethon 3D, a leader in ceramic 3D printed materials, are collaborating to advance the adoption of ceramics in a variety of additive manufacturing applications.

The partnership allows both US-based companies to serve a broad range of industrial applications as well as classified projects with government agencies. Tethon 3D’s expertise in formulating high-performance technical ceramics for 3D printers, combined with Fortify’s advanced 3D printers designed to operate with loaded resins, enables high throughput production of heavily loaded technical ceramics for end use part production.

Fortify and Tethon 3D partner to develop technical ceramics
A 3D printed ceramic Rocket Nozzle printed on the FLUX CORE printer with Low Shrink Aluminum Silicate (LS-AS) resin

“Expanding our platform to the technical ceramics market is a natural evolution for Fortify,” Joshua Martin, CEO and Co-Founder of Fortify said. “Pushing the envelope with these materials requires the processing of highly-loaded, abrasive, and viscous materials. These are the same capabilities that drive our success across various technical photopolymers. Tethon 3D is an ideal partner for us based on their ability to quickly formulate materials.  We’re excited with what they have been able to accomplish with our technology in-house in just six weeks.”

According to 3dpbm‘s own data, which will be published in a new market report to be released in Q3 2021, the market for 3D printed technical ceramics is set for continued growth. The compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) through 2030 is expected to remain above 30% with the market (hardware, materials, services and applications) generating over $5 billion in yearly revenues within 10 years).

Fortify and Tethon 3D partner to develop technical ceramics
A FLUX ONE printer like the one that was installed at Tethon 3D’s Omaha facility.

Fortify seeks to accelerate the transition of technical ceramics manufactured via conventional methods (representing an $8 billion market today) to additive manufacturing. Applications for ceramic materials include extreme temperature environments, high wear requirements, and broad chemical compatibility. Historically, manufacturing challenges have inhibited the growth of ceramics, but now 3D printing allows complex geometries to be fabricated easily and will play a key role in accelerating adoption of this class of materials.

“We are excited to partner with Fortify as the ceramics market grows,” Trent Allen, CEO of Tethon 3D said. “We have clear demand from our customer base for more production-oriented solutions.  Fortify Flux printers are a natural complement to our Bison 1000 DLP printer customers as they look to scale their operations.”

Tethon 3D installed a FLUX CORE printer in their Omaha, NE development facility in mid-June and have used the system, along with Fortify’s Flux Developer software, to develop two materials. These materials, Fortify High Purity Alumina (99.8%) (HP-A 99.8) and Low Shrink Aluminum Silicate (LS-AS), will be released at the RAPID + TCT event in September in Chicago, IL. These materials have the lowest shrink rate of any similar materials on the market and will enable new geometries for customers across industries.

“Working with Fortify to drive new material formulations has been a pleasure,” Greg Pugh, CTO at Tethon 3D said. “The overall robustness of the FLUX CORE system and the capabilities of Flux Developer to quickly validate multiple variables simultaneously has really shortened our lead time on new materials. The key demands from our customers are higher purity materials, low shrink rates, and faster processing through print and sintering.  The Fortify partnership advances our technology on each of these metrics.”

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Davide Sher

Since 2002, Davide has built up extensive experience as a technology journalist, market analyst and consultant for the additive manufacturing industry. Born in Milan, Italy, he spent 12 years in the United States, where he completed his studies at SUNY USB. As a journalist covering the tech and videogame industry for over 10 years, he began covering the AM industry in 2013, first as an international journalist and subsequently as a market analyst, focusing on the additive manufacturing industry and relative vertical markets. In 2016 he co-founded London-based VoxelMatters. Today the company publishes the leading news and insights websites and, as well as VoxelMatters Directory, the largest global directory of companies in the additive manufacturing industry.

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