YBI Acquires ‘Revolutionary’ Additive Technology
YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio — When he was a manufacturing engineering student, XJet CBO Dror Danai said you are taught not to design things that cannot be made later on. With the XJet Carmel 1400C, ceramic 3-D additive printing machine now operating at the Youngstown Business Incubator, he said that is no longer a concern.
While the XJet Carmel 1400C hummed in the background, YBI staff, the innovators from XJet and other partners celebrated the fruition of bringing the groundbreaking additive manufacturing technology to the Youngstown area.
The YBI announced Wednesday it has completed the purchase agreement for the machine, which it says leverages revolutionary NanoParticle Jetting (NPJ) technology to create additive manufactured items out of ceramics. Created by X-Jet, an Israeli company, the technology is capable of creating small, intricate, highly specialized ceramic items. Earlier efforts in additive manufacturing have involved polymer and metal materials, not ceramics.
YBI was the first to have the machine in North American, which partnered with XJet to help launch the new technology and get their new machine operating here. Despite a few growing pains and COVID-19 slowing their plans, the purchase agreement is now final between YBI and XJet.
“I’m confident with this kind of collaboration we can continue to do great things, continue to change the world,” said XJet CEO Yair Alcobi.
Danai said in choosing a place like Ohio and a company like YBI, Xjet would like to bring a shift into ceramic additive manufacturing throughout the county. He credits YBI with keeping the project moving forward even with the challenges they faced.
“Everybody knows why ceramic is so important, but with ceramics it is difficult to create different shapes,” Danai said. “This is why 3-D printing makes a difference, because now you are unlimited with the geometries that you can make.”
Resistant to heats and certain chemicals, the ceramic products are not susceptible to the pressures of wear and are able to insulate in electrical applications. Danai said there are applications that can be done only with ceramics. He sees additive manufacturing as the start of the next industrial revolution because it can be used to create complexity without added cost.
The machine prints items with moving parts in one shot. Danai said the 3-D printing technology is aided by another jetted support material, that is used as a space holder and then will disappear because it is water soluble. He told the crowd about an innovative piston for a European Chaos car recently created with an Xjet machine.
“This shows you the opportunities that additive manufacturing is opening for creative for people, it allows them to think about a few things that were impossible before,” Danai said.
The machine at YBI is now ready to begin taking on more commercial outside projects.
YBI reports the ceramic 3D printing market is expected to grow seven-fold by 2032, reaching $400 million. The technology can be used to create parts for vehicles, medical, industrial and consumer products.