Stratasys Inc., maker of additive manufacturing machines for prototyping and producing plastic parts, announces findings from an independent and extensive performance study characterising the effects of time, temperature and environment on the mechanical properties of PC (polycarbonate) and ABS plastic parts made via the Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM) process.
The first of its kind, this study provides critical data for manufacturers considering additive manufacturing for production parts or functional prototypes. This information is imperative as additive manufacturing moves from its roots in prototyping to production of finished goods.
"The finished product or prototype can be in service for extended periods of time and in varying conditions, so it is imperative to qualify the properties beyond published specifications," the study stated.
The independent study was conducted over a 52 week period by Loughborough University, UK. The study was conducted to evaluate the mechanical properties over time of polycarbonate and ABS plastic parts made with the Stratasys Fused Deposition Modeling process and how the parts stand up in the extreme environments of heat, cold, moisture, and dryness.
"Stratasys has migrated into manufacturing and other high-requirement applications," says Fred Fischer, Director of Materials Business Development for Stratasys. "And manufacturers are hungry for data on mechanical performance of additive processes. The Loughborough study offers statistically sound, comprehensive data, which will help engineers make decisions about additive manufacturing."