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Eastman at NPE2015: Launches ColorFabb XT-Copolyester Made of Eastman Amphora™ 3D Polymer

Published on 2015-03-23. Author : SpecialChem

KINGSPORT, Tenn., USA -- Eastman Chemical Company is enabling more companies to enter the world of 3D printing with its Eastman Amphora™ 3D polymer. The specialty chemical company teamed with Helian Polymers, among the leaders in filament 3D manufacturing, to launch ColorFabb XT-Copolyester made with the polymer in 2014. Now, the companies are launching a new carbon fiber filament, helping a Kickstarter® campaign to revolutionize the industry and showcasing new printing capabilities at NPE2015.

Collaboration makes 3D printing filaments functional

The collaboration between Eastman and Helian, owner of ColorFabb, began in 2013 with the goal of developing a solution for functional 3D products printed using extrusion-based 3D printing. The companies tested materials and formulations using their expertise in high-performance polymers and 3D printing filaments. Eastman’s history with a broad portfolio of solutions and technical expertise complemented Helian’s innovative work with 3D printers and filaments. The resulting ColorFabb XT-Copolyester made with Eastman Amphora™ 3D polymer focuses on functionality and features strength, workability, processing, aesthetics and low odor for 3D printed products.

Now, ColorFabb has unveiled a copolyester-based carbon fiber composite material, XT-CF20, also made with Eastman Amphora™ 3D polymer. The company notes the new material’s high melt strength and viscosity, good dimensional accuracy and stability, low printing odor, and stiffness without being brittle. According to ColorFabb, XT-CF20’s heat resistance, dimensional stability and stiffness make it ideal for use in the fabrication of drones, aerospace and automotive parts, and prototyping.

“After getting over the cost of 3D printers, functional printed parts were still only a dream for extrusion-based desktop printers — until now,” said Alex Dudal, market development representative, Eastman Chemical Company. “The collaboration with Helian has helped small businesses, schools and homes to get into 3D printing, while allowing larger companies to print parts such as prototypes and tools that have dimensional stability and functionality. Now that we have a material that allows this kind of functionality, we’re looking forward to seeing more from 3D printer manufacturers.”

Kick-starting affordable 3D printing

STACKER®, a fast and affordable commercial-grade 3D printer, is the result of a manufacturer making a difference in 3D printing. The project to develop this new 3D printer was launched from a successful Kickstarter campaign and features ColorFabb XT-Copolyester made with Eastman Amphora™ 3D polymer. The new low-odor, styrene-free polymer is uniquely suited for the 3D market and printers, meets regulatory compliance requirements, and it offers air quality and dimensional stability benefits. These benefits are ideally suited for STACKER printers, which now are optimized to run ColorFabb XT-Copolyester.

“The 3D printing industry is progressing fast, and we’re constantly seeing new, exciting things happening — from the development of medical replicas and implants to 3D-printed cars,” Dudal said. “With Eastman Amphora™ 3D polymer, companies like STACKER® are able to push the boundaries and create machines that can print more than one part at a time while still being affordable.”

Eastman showcases ColorFabb XT-Copolyester filament and prototype prints made with Eastman Amphora™ 3D polymer at NPE2015, March 23-27 in Orlando, Florida. Eastman representatives are available throughout the show in Room S230D, where a 3D printer will be on display.

Steve Wright, technology fellow at Eastman Chemical Company, is presenting as part of ANTEC® during NPE2015. His presentation, Clearing the Air About 3D Printing Emissions, will be on March 25 at 1:30 p.m. in Room S319.

About Helian Polymers

Headquartered in Venlo, the Netherlands, Helian Polymers has years of experience in the masterbatch and biopolymer industry. Its goal is to provide the plastic processing market with the best possible solutions with respect to customer needs. To achieve these goals and generate maximum added value, Helian Polymers cooperates with a few select international partners. In 2013, Helian Polymers ventured into 3D printing by producing high-quality filaments, which are developed and produced in the Netherlands under its brand name ColorFabb. With a focus on development of high-end specialty materials, as well as a unique blend of filaments, ColorFabb has already found a worldwide customer base.

About Eastman Chemical Company

Eastman is a global specialty chemical company that produces a broad range of products found in items people use every day. With a portfolio of specialty businesses, Eastman works with customers to deliver innovative products and solutions while maintaining a commitment to safety and sustainability. Its market-driven approaches take advantage of world-class technology platforms and leading positions in attractive end-markets such as transportation, building and construction, and consumables. Eastman focuses on creating consistent, superior value for all stakeholders. As a globally diverse company, Eastman serves customers in approximately 100 countries and had 2014 revenues of approximately $9.5 billion. The company is headquartered in Kingsport, Tennessee, USA and employs approximately 15,000 people around the world.

Source: Eastman

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