Puris LLC, based in Bruceton Mills, West Virginia, USA, has announced that it has successfully produced what it claims is the largest complex additive manufactured titanium part for commercial use. The part was produced using ExOne binder-jetting technology and was processed to 100% density. Measuring an estimated 19” x 19” x 11” inches with a cross-section thickness of 0.375-inch, the part weighs approximately 31 lb.
“There is a lot of activity in this arena and larger parts have been printed, but we believe this is the largest complex titanium part to be printed to date,” Puris’ CEO Craig Kirsch stated. “The milestone was achieved by the combination of our team’s deep metallurgical and powder-production expertise and ExOne binder-jetting technology. It is significant that the part was processed to full density and printed safely using affordable, available powder.”
The part was produced for an aerospace customer on ExOne M-Print™ 3D printer at Puris’ Bruceton Mills plant under the direction of the Puris metallurgy team. The use of binder-jetting technology allowed Puris to print the part at room temperature, eliminating residual stress buildup, as well as the chemical-property and microstructure changes that occur in other metal 3D-printing technologies; these are critical aspects to commercial use of 3D-printed parts, according to Kirsch.
“We are actively working on a number of development programs with other customers interested in bringing large, 3D-printed parts into the additive manufacturing mainstream. Size is currently constrained only by the printer box itself, which presents advancement opportunities for ExOne to develop larger direct-printing machines,” Kirsch added. The current ExOne M-Print print box is 32” x 20” x 16”.
Puris has printed large parts using Inconel alloy powder as well, and is able to print with other high-performance alloys.