Flexible heaters Ideal for 3D Printing Beds
December 18, 2020
Three-dimensional (3D) printing beds commonly need heat applied as the material is deposited and formed. Applying heat allows the plastic to be kept warm which prevents the material from warping. Heat must be applied with a tight tolerance for the printer to function properly. Thermistors are often used in these applications because they are more exact than other kinds of sensors or thermostats and therefore control the temperature far more accurately. The resistance of the thermistor varies greatly as the temperature changes. This change in resistance can be measured and the temperature can be derived far more accurately than in traditional thermostats, resulting in precise heat for the application.
Tempco was approached by a leading U.S. additive manufacturing company and asked to supply heat and control for their application. We designed and manufactured two silicone rubber heaters for their 3D printer product lines. A thermistor was integrated into the bottom of the heaters for precise control over the heated area. We also vulcanized the heaters to the customer-supplied bed plates that are used in the final printing bed assembly.
This is an ideal application for silicone rubber heaters due to their overall thin heater profile and design flexibility.
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