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By A.J. Roan
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ExOne chosen to 3D print copper EV part

Electric motor startup collabs for cheaper, more efficient part Metal Tech News - August 18, 2021


Last updated 8/24/2021 at 3:40pm

ExOne Maxxwell Motors EV electric vehicle 3D printing metal copper winding

The ExOne Company

ExOne and Maxxwell's new concept for cheaper, more efficient copper winding design for electric vehicles. The companies hope to use binder jet 3D printing to produce copper coils for electric motors.

Sand and metal 3D printing experts The ExOne Company Corp. announced Aug. 17 a collaboration with Maxxwell Motors to develop 3D printed copper windings for electric drive systems for electric vehicles.

Founded in 2018, the Tennessee-based startup has been seeking a way to develop electric motors without the use of rare earth magnets.

Optimized copper windings and rotors in electric motors are among the many factors that enable the automotive industry's transition to hybrid and all-electric powered vehicles. However, current manufacturing methods are costly, inefficient, and have design limitations, which also limit performance.

"When we 3D print it, a lot of the challenges just go away, and we can actually improve the performance of the motor itself," said CEO of Maxxwell Motors, Michael Paritee. "At Maxxwell, we're taking the most sustainable, and additive manufacturing, point of view as possible to truly improve efficiency, reduce waste and optimize performance."

Utilizing ExOne's binder jetting technology to extrude copper into otherwise impossible shapes is one of the perks that go along with the rapidly growing 3D printing industry. Ultimately, Maxxwell's goal is to binder jet 3D print winding assemblies as a single giant piece, eliminating the need for coil wrapping, bending, tooling, and welding of individual parts.

"The ExOne team is proud to work with both traditional manufacturers and visionary startups working to change the world with innovative concepts such as these," said ExOne CEO John Hartner. "As the automotive industry enters a new era of electrification, our world-class team of engineers stands ready to help solve some of the most pressing challenges with our binder jet 3D printing technology."

ExOne and Maxxwell have successfully proved a new concept for utilizing binder jetting – a common technique in additive manufacturing that basically squeezes out a material through a nozzle, similar to piping a cake – to print a high-efficiency design in copper that eliminates many of the challenges manufacturers face with conventional methods, additional development and testing are currently underway.


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