Essentium launches PEKK material for HSE 3D printing systems at RAPID + TCT

Essentium has announced the launch of its Essentium PEKK 3D printing filament, which has been developed using Arkema 6002 Kepstan resin.

The material will be used during live demonstrations of the Essentium HSE 280i HT system, which is also making its first public demonstration, at RAPID + TCT

Essentium believes its PEKK material will be of interest to key vertical markets like aerospace and automotive because of its mechanical strength and high resistance to heat and chemicals. In terms of performance attributes, PEKK is similar to PEEK but has a lower crystallisation rate and can thus be treated as an amorphous polymer. The material is less affected by the cooling process after the print, and therefore at less risk of warping, and also maintains the flame, smoke and toxicity ratings for Federal Aviation Regulations compliance. Essentium PEKK has an extrusion temperature between 340°C and 400°C, while it is said to boast an improved resistance to chemical attack compared to PEI materials.

“Industries such as aerospace and automotive want AM to give them speed to parts without sacrificing quality,” commented Brandon Sweeney, Ph.D., Executive Vice President of R&D, Materials at Essentium. “By providing an open additive ecosystem with a range of high-performance materials such as PEKK combined with the powerful capabilities of the HSE 280i, industry players now have a unique opportunity to rapidly produce complex parts for harsh and extreme environments on-demand. These AM innovations are game-changing for manufacturers who are driven by improvement in efficiency and time-to-market opportunities.”

The launch of Essentium PEKK represents another expansion to the company’s materials portfolio, which was also bolstered last year with the introductions of Essentium 9085 (made with SABIC’s ULTEM 9085 resin), PET-CF and TPU 58D-AS. While the company has placed significant focus on the development of materials since launching its High Speed Extrusion series, Essentium has also made progress on the hardware side of the business with the launch of its HSE 280i HT platform, which is equipped with an independent dual extrusion system (IDEX). During the demonstrations of this platform at RAPID + TCT, Essentium is looking to highlight HSE 280i’s capacity to print parts at scale, while also showcasing the machine’s ability to print multi-part builds thanks to its print head being fully independent on both the X and Y axis.

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