3 May 2022
NUBURU and Essentium partner to launch first blue laser-based wire feed metal 3D printers
High-power blue laser technology firm NUBURU Inc of Centennial, CO, USA (which was founded in 2015) and industrial additive manufacturing (AM) firm Essentium Inc of Austin, TX (which makes industrial 3D printers and materials) are partnering to develop and manufacture a blue laser-based metal AM platform. The new Essentium printer will enable manufacturers to create production-grade metal parts with high resolution and fast throughput.
Under the multi-year, multi-million-dollar agreement, Essentium may integrate NUBURU’s proprietary blue laser technology with its high-speed extrusion (HSE) 3D printing technology for product development in the first phase, and manufacturing in the second phase. The new AM platform is designed to deliver breakthrough throughput for extremely high part quality and broad-scale use in major industrial markets, including automotive, aerospace and defense.
As a part of the contract, NUBURU will also license its core 3D printing application patents, based on its foundational patent ‘Methods and systems for welding copper using blue laser’ (US10,940,562B2 and JP2019562226A).
NUBURU claims that its blue laser is well suited to materials processing applications within AM. Critical materials such as copper, stainless steel and aluminum reflect much of the infrared wavelengths transmitted by traditional industrial lasers, which leads to lower print speed and quality. NUBURU says that its blue laser technology enables printing with 10x the build speed and the ability to print with a very high metal density without any post processes.
“Our high-power, high-brightness blue laser technology, along with our 3D printing IP, will help Essentium build a powerful metal 3D printer with a wide range of applications,” reckons NUBURU’s co-founder, CEO & president Mark Zediker Ph.D.
Essentium says that its HSE 3D printing platforms enable an industrial-scale additive manufacturing solution that allows the generation of production-floor-ready parts at scale quickly and cost-effectively. Supported by eight patents to date, the technology provides energy-efficient deposition, eliminating porosity and minimizing warpage during a build. The new platform will produce parts comparable to castings and forgings with minimal post-processing required.
“NUBURU is the leader in blue laser technology, and their expertise will help enable gains in speed and power within our new platform,” comments Essentium’s chief development officer & co-founder Elisa Teipel Ph.D. “We are looking forward to working with their team and leveraging their technology, enabling Essentium to commercialize a new metal 3D printing platform.”