We are currently developing ink printing systems for “direct write/additive manufacturing” of oxide ceramic materials, including alumina, zirconia, and hydroxyapatite, without the use of polymer or solid-phase binders. This allows for direct sintering of a green part with isotropic volume changes and without the risk of contaminants from residual binder products.
Nonoxide ceramics, like refractory carbides and nitrides, often present the most challenging manufacturing conditions, but high-value performance metrics. These are the materials of choice for high-end tooling and engine components. They are often used in extreme conditions, like ultra-high-temperature ceramic hypersonics or high-temperature corrosive environments in heavy industry. We’ve developed a way to print net shape 3D printed metal carbide and nitride parts on a commercializable platform.