3D printer installed to produce ceramic medical models
XJet has installed a Carmel 1400 AM system at the KU Leuven University in Belgium. The installation marks the first system at an academic institution in Europe and it will be used for university research programs and for development of AM medical opportunities in the region.
The XJet Carmel system and its proprietary NanoParticle Jetting Technology (NPJ) will be used by academics to explore medical uses as well as for research and education purposes in additive manufacturing as KU Leuven is positioned as one of the leading academic centres for AM in Europe.
Full Professor Shoufeng Yang, who is heading the AM research at the university, is known worldwide for his many years of research in the field for various academic institutions. He believes that XJet NanoParticle Jetting technology is pushing the limits of innovation made possible by AM.
“Since the Carmel was installed, we are already reaping the benefits,” Yang explained. “The XJet system offers the high levels of precision and exceptional detailing required, levels which were previously impossible or extremely time-consuming in post-processing. The use of soluble support materials, with no harmful powders, makes it a much easier process and opens up opportunities to innovate that simply did not exist before.
“It’s an amazing and fantastic technology for R&D in universities and for the manufacturing industry, and it’s very exciting to be a part of. I believe that this is the best ceramic additive manufacturing method which can be easily upgraded into future multi-materials additive manufacturing, which is a grand challenge in the AM industry.”
Professor Yang has been involved in additive manufacturing for more than 20 years. Currently, under his leadership, the team at KU Leuven is focused on the medical and pharmaceutical industries, having already produced a number of implants in the form of ceramic bones. The institution’s aim is to spread the use of AM across the manufacturing world stating that the Carmel will allow them to accelerate their research and the development of AM across Europe.
“Institutions like KU Leuven University are essential to the ongoing growth of AM and specifically medical AM, allowing for breakthrough research developments as we have seen with previous examples,” added Avi Cohen, VP of Healthcare and Education at XJet. “KU Leuven is the latest addition to our growing install base in Europe.”
KU Leuven has also announced that it is actively seeking collaborators for production projects in the additive manufacturing industry.