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Protolabs introduces new glass beads material to MJF process

The PA 12 Glass Beads Smooth Grey material is characterized by high heat resistance, dimensional stability, and long-term wear resistance

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Protolabs, a digital manufacturing company, has introduced a new material, PA 12 Glass Beads Smooth Grey, as part of its Multi Jet Fusion 3D printing process. The glass beads material is characterized by high heat resistance, dimensional stability, and long-term wear resistance. Using it to create parts via Multi Jet Fusion offers significant benefits, such as enabling the production of small series and prototypes and opening up new areas of application for a wide range of industries and sectors.

“In many industries, especially automotive, the expectations placed on components are exceedingly high. With PA12 Glass Beads Smooth Grey, we are now creating additional possibilities. As a partner to engineers, designers, and manufacturers, we aim to enable opportunities that might not initially seem possible. As such, the introduction of this new material is an important addition to our broad portfolio to turn our partners’ ideas into reality,” said Andrea Landoni, EMEA 3DP Product Manager at Protolabs.

The 40% glass bead polyamide stands out due to its higher thermal resistance compared to unfilled polyamides. Additionally, due to the glass beads additive, the material has a lower impact and tensile strength compared to other nylons, which prevents the material from deforming – even at higher temperatures.

As a result, the material is particularly suitable for enclosures and control cabinets in environments with high heat generation, such as engine cooling systems. Moreover, it is also characterized by tolerances of +/- 0.25mm to 0.002mm.

This news follows Protolabs’ recent investment in two HP Jet Fusion 5600 3D printers at its site in Putzbrunn, Germany.

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Composites AM 2024

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Edward Wakefield

Edward is a freelance writer and additive manufacturing enthusiast looking to make AM more accessible and understandable.

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