3D printing in Copper

Copper is a metal known for its fantastic thermal and electrical conductivity. Ideal applications for 3D printing in copper include induction coils, heat exchangers and electrical wiring.

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About Copper

Copper is a metal material very popular for its great thermal and electrical conductivity, and high ductility. Ironically, these characteristics are also what made it impossible to be 3D printed until 2018. For instance, its highly conductive properties caused the heat from electric beams to be reflected. Material manufacturers had to develop new techniques to make 3D printing with this metal alloy possible.

These new techniques have optimized the material and existing processes in a way that highly conductive 3d printed copper parts can now be produced in a cost-efficient manner. These parts exhibit high stiffness, low magnetic permeability and high elongation at break. One of its main physical characteristics is the reddish color that gets a greenish hue due to oxidation.

One of the advantages of 3D printing in copper is the increase in performance caused by the design freedom that only additive manufacturing can offer. Some common applications for copper parts are heat exchangers, induction coils and heat pipes.

Strengths

✦ Great thermal properties

✦ Excellent electrical conductivity

✦ Design freedom for 3D printing in Copper increases the performance of parts

✦ Bacteria will not grow on it

✦ Highly malleable

Weaknesses

✧ Sensitivity to oxidation leads to a greenish shade

✧ Corrosion can occur at any moment

COMMON APPLICATIONS for Copper

– Electrical wiring

– Conductive inductors

– Electronic device cooling

Available technologies on our copper 3d print service

DMLS

Direct Metal Laser Sintering produces high-end metal parts free of residual stress and internal defects.

EBM

Electron Beam Melting creates sophisticated parts with high dimensional accuracy and strength.

CHARACTERISTICS OF 3D PRINTING IN Copper

DMLS

EBM

Max. Bed Size (mm)

800x400x500 mm

350x350x380 mm 

Max. Bed Size (in)

31.5×15.8×19.7 in

13.8×13.8×15 in

Layer Height

30-150 μm

130 μm

Accuracy

★★★★☆

★★★★☆

Smoothness

★★★★☆

★★★☆☆

Flexibility

★★★☆☆

★★★☆☆

Rigidity

★★☆☆☆

★★☆☆☆

Biocompatible

No

No

Food Safe

Yes

Yes

Watertight

Yes

Yes

Recyclable

Yes

Yes

General technical data for 3D PRINTING IN Copper

Density

8.74 g/cm3

Young Modulus

109 GPa

Yield Strength

385 Mpa

UTS

516 Mpa

Elongation at Break

20%

Hardness

HV 160

* These values are meant to give a general idea of the material. Actual values may vary according to chosen material brand, 3D print service and build condition. Please refer to the Beamler online quoting platform for actual technical data of each material brand. 

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