AIJU develops new materials for the Toy's Rapid Manufacturing

The technological centre is developing plastics with electrical conductivity, plastics with new charges, colouring plastics and with biodegradable characteristics.

AIJU has developed new materials Polyamide (PA)-based for its processing by means of Selective Laser Sintering techniques. The tests undertaken with the specimen tests have revealed an increased stiffness and strength in tension and a decreased impact resistance of these materials. Besides, AIJU is working in the modification of existing formulations to allow their re-using during a higher number of cycles, thus contributing to a reduction in costs and the recycle of raw materials.
One of the main objectives in AIJU is to enable the toy industry and leisure sector to accede to the last developments and technological innovations within the market, contributing in a way that the developments could be achieved according to the requirements of entreprises. That is why it follows the technological evolution of the sector and the necessities of the related companies.
A previous study undertaken by AIJU to the companies using Rapid Prototyping and Rapid Manufacturing technologies has shown that 80% of the companies miss a greater sturdiness in the quality of the final product. As regards materials, 70% would like to manufacture prototypes with ABS by means of SLS, which keep similar characteristics. 95% or the companies believe that PA is a good material to work with and consider it useful to carry out some studies to generate new compounds based on this material. A 52% believe that searching new materials could be interesting, like PP, PET, PS and other elastomeric materials easy to manufacture. Finally, all the questioned companies think that obtaining prototypes directly from the SLS equipment with different colours could be innovative and easy to apply.
The juncture of these materials in Spain is the import of both the technology and the materials, as these are not developments of our own. This fact, combined with the need to boost new materials shown by enterprises, has guided AIJU to research about this subject.
These tasks have been done within the framework of IBE-RM projects, partially supported by MICINN and the UE with FEDER founds (PSE-020000-2004-1) and MatSinter, supported by IMPIVA (IMIDIC/2009/80 y IMIDIC/2010/45).