3D printing is a manufacturing process of components or objects by computer-controlled layer-by-layer deposition of materials or their precursors. Polymers are just as suitable as metal or ceramic powders. The difference to classical processing of polymers is that no tool is required for a molding, in which the material is pressed in the liquid form. This technology was originally developed for the production of prototypes.
The light source and reflector of a car headlight are protected by a transparent material (glass, transparent polymers). Today's car headlights consist mainly of the polymer polycarbonate. This type of polymer is crystal clear, very lightweight, shatterproof, extremely malleable and also the material of choice for LED headlamps, which are increasingly replacing traditional bulbs.
Transparent polymer granules
Raw materials can be handled in solid, liquid or gaseous form. Polymeric materials are supplied as powder, granules, tablets, bales, dispersion, liquids or solutions, thermoplastics usually as granules.
Polymers can be processed into thin films. Films on surfaces are known as "coatings," while self-supporting, windable films are called films. Films may consist of one or more polymers and of one or more layers (composite films). Films are mainly utilized for packaging according to their functionality or properties.
- 3D printing
- Transparent polymer granules
- Plastic sheets
The research in macromolecular chemistry is spread all over Germany, from Rostock to Constance and from Dresden to Aachen. Polymer research can be found at 39 German locations and 46 institutions.