20.3C : Low Cost ABS for Large Format Additive Manufacturing
Industry use of Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS) for tooling and components made via Large Format Additive Manufacturing has been growing due to the lead time improvements, cost savings, and design flexibility enabled by the technology. However, the cost of the most commonly used material (carbon-fiber filled ABS) limits the range of applications for which these advantages can be realized. This project will prove the efficacy of ultra-low cost blends of ABS for use in large format tooling and components. Representative parts will be made using various ultra-low cost blends of ABS. Our target for resin cost reduction over the industry standard material is 80%; we are hoping to drive costs per pound from $5.50/lb to $1.10/lb. To validate our new blends of material, the warpage and shrinkage of test parts resulting from those blends will be measured to and compared to the baseline carbon fiber filled material. Success on this project will enable meaningful reductions in cost and lead times in a variety of defense and commercial applications, including but not limited to flight simulators, composite tooling, and concrete formworks.