Something big is coming: king-sized 3D printers

ROTTERDAM _ Connecting Engineering and Design (CEAD Group) of Rotterdam expects to bring to the marine market this summer a very large 3D printer that can manufacture composite parts of up to 4 x 2 x 1.5 m. (13 x 6.6 x 5ft.)

“We are aiming for the maritime sector,” says CEAD co-owner Lucas Janssen, “because it often needs several pieces, or a small series of special shapes. Making molds is expensive and 3D printing lets you save on that. The printer combines continuous fibers with thermoplastics which makes it possible to ‘weld’ products together if large formats are required. Or even entire hulls.”

The continuous fiber accounts for a significant improvement in mechanical properties and makes industrial projects doable. CEAD was founded in 2015 by Janssen and Maarten Logtenberg, ex-students at Delft University of Technology. They develop much expertise through Leapfrog, a former company that made private use 3D printers.

The 2 found a launching customer for their large 3D printers in Poly Products of Werkendam. And with Royal Roos Engineering & Consulting, CEAD will develop maritime applications for the large printer. / /