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Basic research for additive manufacturing of rubber

: Drossel, W.-G.; Ihlemann, J.; Landgraf, R.; Oelsch, E.; Schmidt, M.

Fulltext ()

Polymers. Online resource 12 (2020), No.10, Art. 2266, 13 pp.
ISSN: 2073-4360
Journal Article, Electronic Publication
Fraunhofer IWU ()

The dissemination and use of additive processes are growing rapidly. Nevertheless, for the material class of elastomers made of vulcanizable rubber, there is still no technical solution for producing them using 3D printing. Therefore, this paper deals with the basic investigations to develop an approach for rubber printing. For this purpose, a fused deposition modeling (FDM) 3D printer is modified with a screw extruder. Tests are carried out to identify the optimal printing parameters. Afterwards, test prints are performed for the deposition of rubber strands on top of each other and for the fabrication of simple two-dimensional geometries. The material behavior during printing, the printing quality as well as occurrences of deviations in the geometries are evaluated. The results show that the realization of 3D rubber printing is possible. However, there is still a need for research to stabilize the layers during the printing process. Additionally, further studies are necessary to determine the optimum parameters for traverse speed and material discharge, especially on contours.