New projects in Sulzbach-Rosenberg

Optimised powders for 3D printing

Press Release /

The OpP3D project was designed due to the limited range of materials and the lack of understanding of the basic principles between process and powder raw material. The aim is to expand the choice of materials and to enable the manufacture and marketing of new products.

© Fraunhofer UMSICHT
funding notice

Through the use of coating processes, Cu and Al powders are developed which contain a thin layer (in the nm range) on each particle. This should either increase the laser absorption (by "darkening" the particle surface) or protect the surface from oxidation (by shielding against direct air contact) and increase the wettability on preforms. This enables processability in the LBM and M3DP techniques. The flawlessness and purity of the parts produced from these powders is obtained by desorption of the applied layer into the atmosphere or by dissolution in the bulk material of the part, without impairing properties such as density, low porosity and electrical conductivity.

Fraunhofer UMSICHT from Sulzbach-Rosenberg with 25 years of experience in powder metallurgy

The development of Cu, Fe and Al powder materials is carried out by four European research partners from Germany and Wallonia/Belgium. They have the know-how along the entire value chain from powder to finished part:

Fraunhofer UMSICHT with 25 years of experience in powder metallurgy,

fem with experience in AM and testing of finished parts,

MateriaNova with expertise in surface functionalization such as coating by PVD/PEVCD for powder,

SIRRIS with great experience in the field of additive manufacturing.

target-oriented implementation of project results 

A user committee consisting of German and Walloon SMEs active in the fields of powder production, plant engineering, AM machine technology and various applications (e.g. electrical appliances, heat exchangers, aircraft) supports and leads the research consortium. The committee ensures that the project results are quickly put into practice. The powder materials obtained and the components made from them are used in the electrical/electronic, automotive, consumer goods and aerospace sectors.

Through the results obtained, this project will contribute to the strengthening of the EU's position in manufacturing, despite fierce competition from the US and Asia, and thus restore jobs previously outsourced from Europe.


Research partner in the OpP3D project