Fortify’s CKM Technology Enables Step Change in 3D Printed Materials
New module opens applications for photopolymer additive manufacturing
March 19, 2020 (Boston, MA) — Fortify, a 3D printing startup, has announced the launch of their CKMTM (Continuous Kinetic Mixing) system, which enables new functionality in printed photopolymers. CKM addresses industry challenges that have persisted for decades when processing filled resins. Fortify’s new system meets the need for advanced material properties in additive manufacturing. This news comes as Fortify grows into its new Boston headquarters with increased printing and manufacturing capacity. The company is preparing to ship machines to select customers this summer.
“Developing Continuous Kinetic Mixing was an integral part of Fortify’s strategy. It will play a critical role in manufacturing functional parts,” said Fortify CEO and Co-Founder Josh Martin. “
We’re excited to incorporate this material handling module with our FluxprintTM process to solve the application challenges of our customers.”
Fiber and particle additives have been used to enhance polymer performance and functionality in the injectionmolding industry for decades. Fortify is the first company to implement these reinforcing techniques with 3D printed photopolymers. CKM ensures that additives stay uniformly distributed throughout the material while mitigating sedimentation and aggregation. This system allows for the manufacturing of a new class of functional materials.
“Our team takes a comprehensive approach to developing additive solutions,” Martin continued. “In addition to advanced hardware and software systems, Fortify innovates within materials science to process viscous, heavily loaded polymers. This new class of material is well suited for high performance applications.”
The CKM process incorporates additives to enhance mechanical performance (strength, stiffness, toughness, wear, and heat deflection temperature) as well as thermal and electrical properties. Fortify’s platform combines the scalability, resolution, and surface quality of photopolymers with the performance expectations of traditional high performance polymers.
Fortify has recently expanded their successful use cases to include metal injection molding. In this application, ceramic fibers are blended with resin to manufacture tooling that can withstand the extreme temperatures and pressures of the molding process.
“For years our customers have been asking us for a better way to prototype parts with our production metal injection molding process. Speed, dimensional accuracy, and production intent processes are critical for our customer’s development efforts,” said Chris Aiello, Technical Sales Manager at Alpha Precision Group. “Fortify finally showed us a tooling solution that holds up to our MIM process, and checks all the boxes for our customers requirements.”
“As our capabilities become known, we’re encouraged by the requests coming from the field,” said Ben Arnold, Vice President of Business Development at Fortify. “There is clear demand for filled systems and we invite industry to challenge us with their requirements.”
Fortify is gaining traction in several specialty applications in the electrical and communications industries. These proprietary use cases leverage Fortify’s ability to combine strength with tuneable dielectrics in complex shapes.
“Material properties are a key factor driving adoption of Additive Manufacturing,” said Ken Kisner, Global Head of Innovation, 3D Printing, Henkel Adhesive Technologies, founder of Molecule Corp. “Fortify’s on-board mixing technology is an important step toward satisfying this need. This is a very exciting piece of technology that will open up significant applications across industries.”
Fortify’s Digital Composite Manufacturing (DCM) platform is the industry’s first and only 3D printer to include onboard mixing (CKM) and magnetic alignment technology (Fluxprint). The Fortify team will begin shipping machines this summer to select partner locations.
Visit www.3dfortify.com to learn more about CKM and Fortify.
Fortify is transforming the 3D printing industry with its patented DCM (Digital Composite Manufacturing) platform. DCM delivers new levels of additively manufactured part performance by introducing functional additives to photopolymers. By combining a deep understanding of material science with high performance mixing, magnetics, and polymer physics, Fortify is able to produce custom microstructures in high-resolution 3D printed parts. The company is currently focused on applications ranging from injection mold tooling to high performance end-use parts with unique mechanical and electromagnetic properties. Founded in 2016 and based in Boston, Fortify technology enables material properties and components unattainable using other additive or traditional manufacturing processes. For more information, visit www.3dfortify.com.
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