Saturday, July 13, 2024

HARTING AG leverages Cubicure 3D printing technology to prototype Mechatronic Integrated Device solutions

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Cubicure is collaborating with HARTING AG, a provider of 3D Mechatronic Integrated Device (MID) solutions, to introduce the 3D printing of Laser Direct Structuring (LDS) materials. 

According to the companies, the 3D printing of MID prototypes has so far been limited due to resolution and material compatibility.

Extrusion processes, while affordable, did not deliver the surface quality required, and resin and powder-based technologies did not allow for defined layer thickness control and brought with them additional manual coating steps. 

By using Cubicure’s Hot Lithography System, however, HARTING believes its new solution overcomes these challenges. The technology is said to enable the direct 3D printing of LDS materials ‘with exceptional resolution and smooth surfaces.’ The printed material can also be seamlessly integrated into the existing LDS process at HARTING, helping the company to achieve significant time savings in the production of prototypes and small series runs. 

The two companies have been working together since 2019, with the first materials to enable the 3D printing of LDS components now available. Among the most important advantages of this solution are the ability to represent complex component geometries with ‘the finest’ conductor paths, the ability for printed components to be populated and assembled in existing equipment, and the rapid iteration of designs to visualise new geometries. The companies say printed parts can also be lasered using existing processes before being ‘metalized.’ 

Earlier this year, Cubicure was acquired by Align Technology in a deal worth 79 million EUR. 

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