Desktop Metal is a pioneer in the emerging global metal binder jet production market. Forust, a company that we were the first medium to bring to market last year, is formed by pioneers in the additive manufacturing industry who use the binder jet to make durable wood products. It seems “natural” for the two companies to team up to bring Forust to market as a new process for the sustainable production of functional wood parts using AM’s patented one-pass binder jet technology. The Forust process recovers the by-products of waste from wood manufacturing (cellulose dust) and the paper industry (lignin) and re-materializes functional wooden parts thanks to high-speed 3D printing including digital grain all over the part.
Desktop Metal’s high-speed 3D printing technology offers architects, designers and manufacturers a new way to produce luxurious custom wood parts for interior design, interiors, transportation and architectural design with a superior environmental footprint, new geometries and quality not available with subtractive woodmaking technology. Starting today, businesses and consumers can visit the Forust website, to order custom wood samples and designs, and manufacturers can engage with Forust to develop unique wood pieces for their products. end use products.
According to William McDonough, architect, globally recognized leader in sustainability and design, and pioneer of the concepts of Cradle to Cradle, the circular economy and the circular carbon economy, “Forust technology allows us to take something that was previously waste wood and re-materialize it into deliciously beautiful and useful things. We honor the cellulose and lignin of trees by re-articulating them into active ingredients for present and future generations. By allowing millions of trees to stay put in their forests, Forust is launching highly evolved technology for the circular technosphere that supports and celebrates the management of the natural, regenerative and diverse biosphere, making it not only smart, but wise. This is a historical and material opportunity in the history of the design and manufacture of things that reminds me of the famous quote from Arthur C. Clarke: “Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic. As a lover of woods and forests, I find Forust indistinguishable from magic. 3D printing of wood from waste natural materials is a game-changer. We have only started to explore its beneficial potentials, but it is clear that they are immense.
Add value to wood by-products with AM
Forust started with the vision of transforming wood by-products, including sawdust and lignin, into finished wood products, combining both stunning design and functionality. Led by industry veteran and ceramic 3D printing pioneer Andrew Jeffery, who was previously President of Boston Ceramics, the Forust team brings decades of collective experience in additive manufacturing, materials research and computer aided design to solve the challenge of durability in finished wood. rooms. Jeffery is joined by co-inventors and creative consultants in industrial design, Virginia San Fratello, chair of the design department at San Jose State University, and Ronald Rael, professor and chair of the architecture department of the University of California at Berkeley, both of which are also founding partners of 3D printing company Emerging Objects.
“The inspiration for Forust was to start with sawdust and end with forests,” Jeffery said. “Our process is based on extensive research conducted over the past decade in the field of hardwood lumber, leading to complex and elegant finished structures. With advanced CAD software, proprietary materials, and Desktop Metal binder jet mass production platforms, we can now manufacture beautiful, functional and innovative wood products for a variety of architectural, interior applications. and domestic products from recycled wood by-products.
A greener future with AM du bois
At the heart of this innovation is the Forust process, which combines two waste streams from traditional wood production, sawdust and lignin, to sustainably produce isotropic and high strength wood parts. Depending on the size of the parts, Forust can manufacture wood products using the Shop SystemTM or a custom version of the new RAM 336TM 3D printer, which supports prints up to two cubic meters in volume at speeds greater than 100 liters of parts per hour. During the printing process, specially treated sawdust layers are spread and selectively joined by a non-toxic and biodegradable binder. Digital grain is printed on each layer and the parts can then be sanded, stained, polished, stained, coated and refinished in the same way as traditionally manufactured wood components.
“Forust offers almost limitless design flexibility,” Jeffery said. “From exotic grain structures to grainless wood, we can digitally replicate wood textures and a myriad of grain types. And, because they are made from a compound of wood and bioresin, these parts exhibit functionality and rigidity in line with conventional wood. Our finished pieces are indistinguishable from the traditionally crafted wood products you will find in a store. The additive manufacturing process literally becomes invisible.
Rationalization of the production of complex wood products
Since Forust additively produces parts layer by layer without the need for supports, designers have the freedom to create complex features and iconic designs that would be difficult or impossible to produce with traditional woodworking methods.
Unlike particle board or laminate, Forust produces a wood part with a digital grain that runs through the entire part that can be sanded and refinished. The software has the ability to digitally reproduce almost any grain of wood, including Rosewood, Ash, Zebrano, Ebony, and Mahogany, among others. The pieces will also support a variety of wood stains at launch, including natural, oak, ash and walnut.
Forust’s process and materials are designed to provide easy access to a sustainable end-to-end manufacturing solution. Manufacturers and designers can submit their own custom designs for printing, order samples, or pursue high-volume partnerships to produce custom and volume 3D printed wood parts for use in their products. Additive manufacturing enables digital production on demand, which minimizes material waste, in-store inventory and shipment pollution while delivering artisanal quality at an affordable price.
“We want to make it easy for designers to explore new, complex geometries for a wide variety of products and applications using age-old material,” Jeffery said. “At the end of the life of the wood product, we would like customers to have two choices: dispose of it and it will biodegrade over time like any wood product would, or shred it and reuse the material. in future pieces via Forust. Our vision is a true circular manufacturing process.
A collection by designer Yves Béhar
The global finished wood products market is expected to reach $ 1.8 trillion by 20272. From everyday household items to high-end architectural details, Forust can create functional parts for virtually any wood application with a significantly improved environmental footprint compared to conventional manufacturing. Architects, interior and industrial designers, manufacturers and even consumers can visit www.forust.com to download and order custom designed wood pieces, such as architectural accents, including unique decorative panels, Custom wood inlays and panels, tiles, hardware and more.
Applications expand to include luxury interior components in a wide range of finishes and materials, including rare and exotic grain structures, for high-end vehicles, yachts and homes; and even furniture, including cabinet doors, chairs, accents, tables, and designs with 3D geometry previously difficult or impossible to fabricate with conventional woodworking methods. Possible home products range from flower pots, bowls and photo frames to textured blocks, bathroom accessories, desk accessories, sculptures, tiles and more.
A range of consumer home items designed by Forust and others in collaboration with talented independent designers and brands are now available for purchase. Among the first design products available on the Forust online store, a collection created by the industrial designer and founder of fuseproject, Yves Béhar. The Vine collection, which includes a vessel, bowl, basket and tray, honors the warmth and familiarity of wood with curved organic shapes that start from a singular point and twist into a repeating pattern.
“As a designer I use a lot of wood and being able to use a product made from sawdust and lignin is an incredible resource,” said Béhar. “The future of design and production really depends on the arrival of new technologies and the ability for designers to approach materials and manufacturing in a sustainable, low-carbon way, so as to utilize waste. instead of cutting more trees or extracting more oil from the ground. Design is not just something that stays the same all the time. This new technology allows us to really solve some of the critical environmental and global warming issues we face. “
“The applications for Forust’s wood parts are truly limitless,” said Ric Fulop, Founder and CEO of Desktop Metal. “There are many applications where polymers and plastics are used today, where you can now cost-effectively replace with sustainably manufactured wooden parts – luxurious, high-end components in interiors, electronics. general public, instruments, aviation, boats, household items and possibly floor coverings. and exterior roofing applications. For the first time, we can produce beautiful pieces with the same durability and characteristics as traditionally manufactured wood, but printed using recycled materials that do not require cutting or harvesting trees. With Forust, we have the opportunity to have a significant impact on sustainability, climate change and the waste issues that we as humanity have brought to the planet. For every tree saved, we reduce the carbon footprint by one tonne over its lifetime.