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Oxford Performance Materials Launches First Two Grades of PEKK 3D Printing Polymers
SOUTH WINDSOR, Conn. —Oxford Performance Materials Inc. (OPM) recently launched the first two grades of its OXFAB® 3D printing technology for aerospace and industrial applications — OXFAB-N and OXFAB-ESD.
OXFAB is OPM's proprietary technology platform and formulation of poly-ether-ketone-ketone (PEKK), an ultra-high performance polymer with exceptional strength, chemical resistance, low and high temperature performance, radiation resistance, superior wear properties, and ultra-low outgassing — all of which are critical to aerospace and industrial applications.
OPM (www.oxfordpm.com) Aerospace & Industrial utilizes OXFAB technology to deliver lightweight, high performance, cost-competitive, 3D printed thermoplastic parts for commercial and military aircraft, spacecraft, and other industrial markets, including the transportation, energy, and semiconductor sectors. The company's additive manufacturing technology produces very complex parts that are reported to equal the performance of a range of traditionally manufactured, aluminum and composite components at lighter weight and reduced cost.
In a release from OPM, company representatives called OXFAB “a robust and repeatable production process,” and said that other advanced material grades are currently under development to meet unique market requirements. OXFAB-N is composed of unmodified neat PEKK, a material that has a very low microwave dielectric constant and is well suited for radomes and other unique electrical applications. OXFAB-ESD is a carbon filled PEKK compound with superior mechanical properties that are well-positioned for demanding structural applications in the aerospace and industrial markets.
"We believe that OXFAB will fundamentally improve the way the world's aircraft and industrial components are manufactured," said Paul Martin, president of OPM Aerospace & Industrial, in a statement. "OPM's OXFAB products are ideally suited for end market applications where functional complexity and weight reduction can have a substantial and positive impact on performance, while also yielding cost and energy savings — creating sustained value for our customers."
While additive manufacturing with commodity polymers has been taking place for some time now, Martin explained in the statement, this is the first time PEKK is being used for 3D printing in aerospace and industrial applications.
“PEKK is the highest performance thermoplastic available for 3D printing fully functional, end-use parts and components,” he said. “We are fulfilling critical development contracts for 3D printed parts in a range of applications in commercial and military aircraft, space, and industrial products to deliver significant weight and cost savings— a central focus and benefit for our aerospace and industrial customers," Martin said in the statement.
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