A group of scientists and researchers from the Technical University of Vienna has succeeded in manufacturing for the first time by 3D printing a permanent magnet, a type of magnet that is created with a predetermined shape and magnetic field. Thanks to the achievement of this milestone, it will now be possible to create complex shaped magnets with custom magnetic fields, something that is usually very necessary, especially for the manufacture of magnetic sensors.
As advertised Dieter Süss, Head of the Christian-Doppler Advanced Magnetic Sensing and Materials Laboratory at the Technical University of Vienna:
The strength of a magnetic field is not the only factor. Special magnetic fields are often required, with field lines arranged in a very specific way, such as a magnetic field that is relatively constant in one direction, but varies in intensity in another direction. Now we can design a magnet on a computer, adjusting its shape until all the requirements for its magnetic field are met.
Thanks to this project, it will now be possible to create a magnet whose magnetic field is customized for a specific task.
This type of solution had already existed for quite some time, although unfortunately creating a model by injection was something quite expensive and took a long time to work because it was strictly necessary to create a mold, which only made it suitable for a small production. quantities. Thanks to the solution proposed by this team of researchers, a 3D printer can now be used to produce magnetic materials which makes both production costs and the time required to manufacture each magnet are reduced.
Going into a little more detail, it should be noted that in order to manufacture magnets a technique very similar to that used by plastic printers is used except that for this task the unit uses micromagnetic granulate filaments able to hold the binder material based on a special polymer together. The result of using this methodology is an object composed of 90% magnetic material and 10% plastic material.