LGPM ( Laboratoire Génie des Procédés et Matériaux) is a French laboratory specialized in both process engineering and materials. To carry their studies out, the lab is equipped with a wide range of cutting-edge and expensive machines. When one of these machines broke down, the lab had to find easily accessible resolutions to repair this equipment. For that reason, the LGPM has benefited from the versatility and flexibility of 3D printing to accomplish this mission.
A chromatograph at a standstill due to a deficient part
Electrical connectors are a typical example of spare parts that are more likely to break but are quite complex to get a hold on. Connectors are also technical parts that must show several mechanical properties to work properly. Thus, these parts have to be good electrical insulators in order to avoid a court circuit and also need a high-temperature resistance. The ideal material for this kind of application is mainly ceramic, and a wide range of connectors are made from zirconia and alumina. However, the breaking down of one of the LGPM Gas Chromatograph, due to the defectivity of its connector, made the lab think of a different solution.
Printing a new part with ceramic 3D printing
To fix this complex machine, the LGPM has chosen Zetamix’s 3D printing expertise to produce the broken part. Since the alumina filament provided by the brand showed the same characteristic of electrical insulation and heat resistance as regular alumina must have, Zetamix users were able to conceptualize, print, debind, and sinter the part in less than a week. Finally allowing the lab to keep using its equipment and save resources.