Lucideon specialises in materials technology and processes across a host of industries. It aims to combine materials science with ‘innovative ideas and commercial know-how’ to enhance the productivity, cost and product performance of the companies it deals with. The MTC meanwhile is the UK’s National Centre for Additive Manufacturing (NCAM) and boasts not only a wealth of 3D printing expertise, but an extensive network of contacts and a growing portfolio of additive manufacturing equipment.
Pooling together their respective expertise, the pair hope their collaboration can help to establish the UK as a centre of excellence for ceramic additive manufacturing. They will work to develop ceramic additive manufacturing technologies and a series of applications.
Ceramic additive manufacturing has a play in a number of industries, particularly the medical space, and there are several vendors bringing to market ceramic 3D printing systems, including Lithoz, XJet and Tethon 3D. However, with 3D printing ceramics not deemed to be ‘widespread’ within the UK by MTC and Lucideon, the pair intend to explore materials technology and access to facilities, while encouraging ceramics business to improve their additive manufacturing production processes, as well as their productivity.
“Additive manufacturing is one of the fastest growing technologies in manufacturing and certainly has a future in the ceramics sector,” commented NCAM Senior Research Engineer Tom Wasley. “There is a worldwide interest in the technology, so it is important that the UK explores how technology can provide a competitive edge.”