Filamet copper

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jonnybischof
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Filamet copper

Post by jonnybischof » September 15th, 2016, 3:18 am

Has anyone tested the new Filamet Copper yet?

http://www.thevirtualfoundry.com/shopify-cart/

I wonder if it can be used to print electrical circuits. With 85% copper it could be good enough even without heating it after the printing (which would give 99% copper that will surely be electrically conductive).

It's an US based manufacturer, and I haven't found an european reseller yet.

If anyone has their hands on, please print some thin line with it and measure it's electrical resistance!
It's not as simple as a traditional PCB design, but if this stuff really is highly conductive we could make multilayer PCBs with it. SMD components wouldn't work because reflow soldering is not an option (unless there will also be a ceramic filament that doesn't melt at 260°C after printing) and surface quality as well as printing resolution would be too low.
But it could be possible to make PCBs with THT-only components.
Best regards,
Jonny

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ivan.akapulko
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Re: Filamet copper

Post by ivan.akapulko » September 26th, 2016, 3:45 am

Wow, thats looks much better, than ProtoPasta's stuff.

Anders Olsson
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Re: Filamet copper

Post by Anders Olsson » October 4th, 2016, 4:03 pm

Interesting stuff, but I would not have too high expectations on it being electrically conductive before heating.

The amount of copper is measured by weight and copper is about nine times more heavy than plastic.
So by volume the copper content is roughly 50%, which means there is still a lot of plastic potentially isolating the copper particles.

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Re: Filamet copper

Post by jonnybischof » October 5th, 2016, 2:45 am

So, we'd need a way to get that plastic out after printing a complex and sensitive net of PCB traces without moving these traces by as much as 0.3 mm (that requires around 0.5 mm copper-copper spacing which is huge compared to the 0.15 mm standard).

Maybe print the traces onto a heat resistant material and burn the plastic out afterwards? Or maybe there's a chemical solution that will wash out the plastic from the copper filament, but not the carrier?

I see little to no potential for "actual" PCBs with integrated circuits and components like SD cards or USB. But there could be huge potential for power distribution PCBs which basically only contain a bunch of connectors (and maybe some resistors and MosFETs) which need to be wired up with big current carrying capabilities. 3D printed PCBs could be made with very thick copper "traces" that can easily carry 100 Amps. Just make a 3mm wide and 2mm high trace...
Best regards,
Jonny

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Re: Filamet copper

Post by Iltacitoduca » October 11th, 2016, 4:21 am

jonnybischof wrote:So, we'd need a way to get that plastic out after printing a complex and sensitive net of PCB traces without moving these traces by as much as 0.3 mm (that requires around 0.5 mm copper-copper spacing which is huge compared to the 0.15 mm standard).

Maybe print the traces onto a heat resistant material and burn the plastic out afterwards? Or maybe there's a chemical solution that will wash out the plastic from the copper filament, but not the carrier?

I see little to no potential for "actual" PCBs with integrated circuits and components like SD cards or USB. But there could be huge potential for power distribution PCBs which basically only contain a bunch of connectors (and maybe some resistors and MosFETs) which need to be wired up with big current carrying capabilities. 3D printed PCBs could be made with very thick copper "traces" that can easily carry 100 Amps. Just make a 3mm wide and 2mm high trace...
I don't think so... huge potential???
PCB etching is faster, more precise and reliable process (even in a DIY process).. and it is much cheaper!
You should try for yourself making a PCB at home you can reach result as this one (prototype of amplifier for a pressure sensor)

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Re: Filamet copper

Post by LePaul » October 11th, 2016, 10:12 am

I'll have to search my bookmarks...but there was a place many of us R2 Builders used for getting PCBs made.

Edit...found it... https://oshpark.com/

The way it worked was the tech genius who designed various PCBs, especially for LED light kits, uploaded the file and shared it. The place that made the PCBs also had them on their special R2 Builder page. You could order them but they would do them in batches every month. So you might have to wait a few weeks but you could get those impressively-complicated parts with ease!

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Re: Filamet copper

Post by jonnybischof » October 11th, 2016, 11:23 am

Iltacitoduca wrote:
...

I don't think so... huge potential???
PCB etching is faster, more precise and reliable process (even in a DIY process).. and it is much cheaper!
You should try for yourself making a PCB at home you can reach result as this one (prototype of amplifier for a pressure sensor)
You didn't read my post right ;)

If I need PCBs made, I order them from PCB-pool or leiton (Germany). It's the most convenient way and it gets me the quality I need. Etching at home is futile since multilayers are out of the question - and every PCB I make is a multilayer :P
Best regards,
Jonny

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Re: Filamet copper

Post by Anders Olsson » October 11th, 2016, 11:26 am

I am thinking this filament, if it conducts electricity well, would be interesting for printing electronic circuits in 3D inside a non conductive polymer. That assumes one would get across a properly working dual printer of course and it would be most suitable for small scale production, but it is an attractive idea.

One could for example integrate contact surfaces and threaded screw holes for mounting connection wires into the structure of the object.
And one could potentially print electrical feedthroughs into the object to for example measure the conductivity of a liquid inside a printed container without having to buy or fit additional components.

The copper filament also has potential for x-ray shielding (as people are unlikely to start printing with lead filament and the gmass tungsten filament has much lower metal loading)

Iltacitoduca
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Re: Filamet copper

Post by Iltacitoduca » October 11th, 2016, 12:17 pm

jonnybischof wrote:
Iltacitoduca wrote:
...

I don't think so... huge potential???
PCB etching is faster, more precise and reliable process (even in a DIY process).. and it is much cheaper!
You should try for yourself making a PCB at home you can reach result as this one (prototype of amplifier for a pressure sensor)
You didn't read my post right ;)

If I need PCBs made, I order them from PCB-pool or leiton (Germany). It's the most convenient way and it gets me the quality I need. Etching at home is futile since multilayers are out of the question - and every PCB I make is a multilayer :P
yes, seems you too haven't read my post right ;-)
(even in a DIY process)
is more clear now?
Kindly Regards

Iltacitoduca
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Re: Filamet copper

Post by Iltacitoduca » October 11th, 2016, 12:20 pm

Anders Olsson wrote:I am thinking this filament, if it conducts electricity well, would be interesting for printing electronic circuits in 3D inside a non conductive polymer. That assumes one would get across a properly working dual printer of course and it would be most suitable for small scale production, but it is an attractive idea.

One could for example integrate contact surfaces and threaded screw holes for mounting connection wires into the structure of the object.
And one could potentially print electrical feedthroughs into the object to for example measure the conductivity of a liquid inside a printed container without having to buy or fit additional components.

The copper filament also has potential for x-ray shielding (as people are unlikely to start printing with lead filament and the gmass tungsten filament has much lower metal loading)

Not to be pessimistic... but it need some more time to have something complying with the actual security standard ..even for small scale production...

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