At the end of 2021, research firm IDTechEx released a report that projected the ceramic additive manufacturing market to be worth $400 million by 2032, seven times higher than the forecast for 2022. This is a testament to the continued growth of ceramic additive manufacturing as a market segment and the huge potential it holds. If we look at the number of existing ceramic 3D printers, we can see that it is also increasing in number and variety.
In fact, ceramic materials can be printed by several different processes: stereolithography, powder bonding or extrusion techniques. The types of ceramic materials are also very diverse, such as the ubiquitous materials like porcelain or clay, but there are also more functional ceramics that will be more popular with manufacturers (alumina, zirconia, tungsten carbide, etc.). But which printing machines are adapted to functional ceramics manufacturing? Which are more oriented solutions for personal use? To help better understand and address the above questions, this article from NJC lists 12 ceramic 3D printers on the market, divided by application type, and provides further details on each of them.
1. 3Dceram's C3600Ultimate
French manufacturer 3DCeram is a major player in the ceramic additive manufacturing market. It has long been dedicated to developing specialized solutions for a wide range of applications. One of its most prominent 3D printers is the C1000 Flexmatic, which was designed to meet the industrial challenges of mass production. This machine uses a top-down stereolithography process in which liquid ceramics are hardened layer by layer by a laser. Thanks to this method, parts with high precision and fine detail can be consistently manufactured without the need for supports. with a maximum manufacturing volume of 320 x 320 x 200 mm, the C1000 Flexmatic integrates everything needed to support 3D printed ceramic parts on a semi-automated production line. If you want to learn more about this ceramic 3D printer and see it in action, find more information on their official website (https://3dceram.com/imprimante-3d/c3600-ultimate-en/).
2. Admatec's Admaflex130
This ceramic 3D printer is aimed at industrial applications and comes from Admatec - a company based in the Netherlands. released in 2018, the Admaflex 130 is a 3D printer that uses DLP technology for ceramic printing. With a build platform of 96 x 54 x 120 mm and a minimum layer width of 0.03 mm, the Admaflex 130 also features an XY accuracy of 0.05 mm. According to the manufacturer, the ceramic 3D printer with a total weight of 300 kg is particularly suitable for producing functional and artwork parts, which should have complex geometry but also fine surfaces. However, in addition to 3D printer manufacturing, the Dutch company also offers 3D printing services. If you want to know more about the Admaflex 130, visit their official website (https://admateceurope.com/admaflex130).
3. X1 160PRO by Desktop Metals
The X1 160PRO is an industrial machine that originally came from ExOne and is now under the DesktopMetal brand since ExOne was acquired in 2021. The printer is 800 x 500 x 400 mm in size and uses the binder-jet principle. According to DM, it is the world's largest binder-jet 3D printer for the production of metal, ceramic or composite parts. As the largest of the X product line, it may be known for its metal 3D printing capabilities, but when it comes to ceramics, it is equally adept at producing high-density and repeatable parts. In addition to its massive size, it can print layers between 30 and 200 microns thick at a rate of 10,000 cubic centimeters per hour. You can find more information here (https://www.desktopmetal.com/products/xseries).
4. CeraMaxVario V900 from Lithoz
The CeraMaxVario 900 3D printer from Lithoz is the first printer to produce large, thick-walled, fully dense parts from oxide and non-oxide ceramics. It is also capable of processing dark ceramics such as silicon carbide at full density. The printer is based on Lithoz's new LIS technology, which enables additive manufacturing using industrial water-based suspensions with very low organic binder content.The CeraMax Vario 900 also stores and manages all process data with the support of a database, thus ensuring seamless documentation of print jobs. The printing process can be monitored via real-time remote video transmission. You can learn more on Lithoz's website (https://lithoz.com/en/3d-printers/ceramax-vario-v900).
5. Prodways' ProMakerL6000
The ProMaker L6000 is an industrial 3D printer designed by French manufacturer Prodways. This solution can handle highly viscous materials, making it perfect for making ceramic parts. It uses Prodway's MOVINGLight polymerization technology, which provides high precision with resolutions up to 42 microns and layer thicknesses between 25 and 150 microns. The machine is designed to manufacture large parts at high speed, with a print volume of 800 x 330 x 400 mm. With the ability to design parts with high-quality surfaces, Prodways' solution minimizes the necessary post-processing steps once the part is printed. According to the manufacturer, it is ideal for a wide range of applications, especially because of its ability to meet all levels of requirements. You can learn more here (https://www.prodways.com/en/industrial-3d-printers/promaker-l6000/).
6. VX1000 from Voxeljet
The ceramic 3D printer VX1000 was developed by the German manufacturer Voxeljet, known for its industrial range of machines. This machine uses adhesive jetting technology to create ceramic materials, sand and some polymers such as polymethacrylate. the VX1000 is an industrial printer designed for developing molds and small production runs, and since it can be manufactured from a range of materials, it can also be used for research. It has a print volume of 1000 x 600 x 500 mm and can reach layer thicknesses of 80-300 microns. You can find more information here (https://www.voxeljet.com/3d-printing-solution/technical-ceramics/).
7. 3DPotterBot Micro 10 from 3D Potter
3D Potter is an American manufacturer that specializes in 3D printing ceramic materials with material deposition technology. According to the manufacturer, their line of ceramic 3D printers is the only one on the market that allows manufacturing with real clay. the Micro 10 is an entry-level ceramic 3D printer that is ideal for teaching in schools or for artists interested in ceramic 3D printing technology. the Micro 10 has a 1,000 ml extruder with a build envelope of up to 1 foot. Although it is the company's smallest clay printer, it is capable of printing at high speeds and its compact design is ideal because it fits into any space. Click here to learn more (https://3dpotter.com/printers/potterbot-micro-10).
The CERAMBOT 3D printer is a desktop printer that comes in two models - the Pro and the Air. the CERAMBOTPro prints at speeds of 5-50 mm/sec, while weighing only about 15 kg. The Shandong-based homegrown company claims that their models are 20% faster than other ceramic 3D printers. This can be attributed to industrial linear guides that still maintain print accuracy of up to 0.1 mm. both the Pro and Air are easy to use with the popular open source slicing software for desktop FDM 3D printers. To learn more about CERAMBOT, click here (https://www.cerambot.com/product/).
9. LUTUM by Vorm Vrij
The LUTUM line of clay 3D printers comes from Dutch manufacturer VormVrij, a company that is always looking to stretch the limits of clay 3D printing. These machines are designed to be sustainable, easy to maintain and suitable for professionals and potters alike. The latest models in the line are the LUTUM 4 and 5 mini clay printers, although there are a few others. the LUTUM 5 mini's older sibling is the LUTUM, a professional clay 3D printer with a 32-bit operating system, 7-inch touchscreen, wifi connectivity and more. It has two extruders that can be used in sequence with different clay types and colors, or in parallel to increase clay output and print speed. the LUTUM 5 is one of the larger machines, with a slightly lower print volume than the LUTUM 4.6, at 95L instead of 100L. users can also find the largest model, the BRUTUM 1, which also uses extrusion technology and has a print volume of 247L. You can find more information here (https://vormvrij.nl/lutum/).
10. WASP's Delta WASP40100 clay
One of the ceramic additive manufacturing solutions launched by the famous Italian manufacturer WASP's is the Delta WASP 40100 Clay, a desktop-sized ceramic 3D printer with special features. The printing is done directly on the desired surface, such as the floor. So basically there is no printing plate. This has the advantage of bypassing the necessary drying waiting time. There is also an XL extruder, which allows the printer to create larger prints in less time. It is compatible with a variety of materials such as porcelain, stone, refractory and clay. The printer can also be supplemented with a professional clay kit that includes a clay extruder and an LDM WASP extruder 3.0. This is suitable for all liquid dense and ceramic materials. You can find more information here (https://www.3dwasp.com/en/ceramic-3d-printer-delta-wasp-40100-clay/).
11. StoneFlower 3.0 from StoneFlower
StoneFlower is a technology-based company made up of researchers, scientists and engineers who are developing 3D printers that can handle ceramics. Among the company's solutions is the StoneFlower 3.0, a printer with a print volume of 50 x 50 x 50 cm, based on extrusion technology with an all-metal chassis for stability and speed. In addition, the 3D printer has a touch screen for ease of use and the option to pause and resume the printing process at any time. It weighs 35 kilograms and prints at speeds that vary between 30 and 100 millimeters per second. According to the company, the StoneFlower 3.0 is compatible with the majority of slicers on the market and is ideal for designing ceramic parts with ease. Readers can learn more on StoneFlower's website (https://www.stoneflower3d.com/store/3d-printer-stoneflower/).
12. Pollen Series MC
French company Pollen has introduced this ceramic 3D printer, probably one of the most versatile, capable of handling the widest range of industrial materials to create functional parts. This 3D printer allows the direct use of granular materials that can be extruded. the PAM series printer has dimensions of 834 x 834 x 925 mm, a print speed of 160 mm/s and a build volume of 300 x 300 mm (21 x 106 mm). Compared to its predecessor, the new Pam Series MC prints twice as fast under high-temperature conditions. This breakthrough is the result of developing new power electronics and a strengthened, lighter structure to ensure high-speed print quality. Click here to learn more (https://www.pollen.am/pam_series_mc/).