Nano Dimension Technologies, an additive manufacturing company, has created a nanoparticle-based ink which prints copper using digital 3D printers.
Copper nanoparticle oxidation is a major challenge associated with 3D printing copper. Copper is highly conductive electrically and its cheap price is a major advantage when compared to silver. Copper nanoparticles rapidly oxidize when they come in contact with air, hampering their electrical conductivity.
The nanoparticle-based ink provides enhanced oxidation resistance, resulting in the ability to print copper. The patent application presents the innovative approach taken by the company to surmount the challenges of copper nanoparticle oxidation. The breakthrough will enable efficient and inexpensive methods of 3D printing electronics.
Amit Dror, CEO of Nano Dimension, stated: “Our conversations with hundreds of companies across different industrial sectors indicate a strong demand for our 3D printed electronics technology. The demand is not limited to prototyping, but also includes industrial scale manufacturing applications. The current global PCB market is estimated to be larger than $70 billion and is expected to reach about $100 billion in the coming years.”
“In accordance with our vision that innovative materials are key to advancing additive manufacturing, Nano Dimension engages in research and development to widen the use-cases of its innovative 3D printed electronics technology. A high-performance copper nanoparticle ink presents an opportunity to significantly impact this huge market.”
Nano Dimension has filed a patent application with U.S. Patent and Trademark Office for the proprietary copper ink.
Image courtesy of Nano Dimension