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Additive Manufacturing of Elastomer, Ceramic & Metal Multi-functional Structures

Dr. Eric Macdonald is one of the pioneering developers of 3D printed electronics and he also happens to ba great storyteller. In this short presentation, you can learn about the evolution of 3D printed electronics at their lab from 2009 until now.

First, you will see an example of 3D printed motors from 2009. Here, the 3D printing process would be interrupted to manually insert wires and magnetics into the stator, making a functional motor able to run at 4000 rpm.

In the next example, you can see an automatic multi-station system, combining multiple 3D print and gantry/worktop stations all connected and orchestrated by an industrial robotic arm. Here, the plastic parts would be printed using Stratasys printers. The 3D printing process would be interrupted and the robotic arm would take the part to other gantries where wire placement, milling, machining, dispensing, IC and PCB placement etc could automatically take place, before the robotic arm would take the part back to the 3D printer to continue the build up. This was thus a fully automated system for building 3D printed electronics.

In general, Eric's group did not focus on conductive inks and pastes given the low conductivity levels. However, as they look to form 3D printed electronics based on alumina and zirconia sintered at high temperature, they may re-use high temperature sintered conductive plates, perhaps borrowed from the LTCC world. Given the high sintering temperatures, very high conductivity levels can be achieved.

To learn more about the world of 3D printed electronics join us onsite in Eindhoven (the Netherlands) on 12-13 OCT 2022


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