• Newsroom
  • Toray Launches Toraypearl<sup>&trade;</sup>PA6 Polymer Delivering Exceptional 3D Printing Strength, Thermal Resistance, and Quality

Toray Launches ToraypearlPA6 Polymer Delivering Exceptional 3D Printing Strength, Thermal Resistance, and Quality

Share on facebook Share on twitter Share on Linkedin

Aug. 23, 2022

Toray Industries, Inc.

Tokyo, Japan, August 23, 2022 – Toray Industries, Inc., announced today that it has completed a mass production system and initiated sales of ToraypearlPA6. This truly spherical polyamide 6 particle offers outstanding high strength, heat resistance, and surface smoothness for powder bed fusion 3D printers (see note 1). The production facility for this offering should be fully operational by the fiscal year ending March 2026, and further expanding this business and lifting capacity will be insighted.
Powder bed fusion 3D printers use metal or resin particles and offer the 3Dprinted parts with excellent dimensional accuracy and efficiency. Metals are for applications requiring exceptional strength. Polymers are commonly for industrial applications because of lightness and affordable costs. However, polymer particles containing mainly used polyamide 12 and others are irregular shapes. Printed surfaces thus require polishing and other post-processing to use them in prototypes or end-use parts, increasing costs and lead times being the issue.

This situation prompted Toray to apply its proprietary polyamide particle technology (see note 2) to polyamide 6, which has a high melting point and good mechanical properties. This effort led it to create ToraypearlPA6, the first product in the world with true spherical polyamide 6 particles. This offering caters to customer demand for printed parts with smoother surfaces (see note 3), greater strength and heat resistance under tougher conditions.

The outstanding performance characteristics of ToraypearlPA6 enable 3D printing of complex and precise shapes as well as smooth surface, this can reduce the need for polishing and other post-processing stages.

Furthermore, spherical particles ensure the fluidity needed for 3D printing, even when blended with reinforcing glass fibers, for modeling that combines excellent rigidity with the attributes mentioned above.

Toray will leverage these features in initially proposing prototypes for automotive parts, power tools, and other equipment requiring a lot of strength, heat resistance, and precision. It ultimately looks to expand into the 3D printer market for end-use parts.

Tokyo-based 3D printer company Aspect Inc. has already obtained conformity certification for ToraypearlPA6 for its AM-E3 300HT and 550HT additive manufacturing printers.

This new product will augment ToraymillPPS, a polyphenylene sulfide resin milled powder launched in 2017, as part of Toray’s drive to expand its lineup of resin materials for 3D printers. Toray will also provide new value in the growing 3D printer field by applying its proprietary particle and particle size control technologies with Toray-developed polyamides.

3D printed parts using ToraypearlPA6 made by Aspect Inc. 
Intake manifold (Size: 185mm×105mm×85mm)

1. Powder bed fusion 3D printers
These platforms are commonly employed in industrial applications. They lay down metal and resin particles. Lasers serve as heat sources to repeatedly melt and solidify modeled parts.

2. Proprietary polyamide particle technology
A fruit of research into polyamide polymerization, this new technology creates spherical particles when polyamide is polymerized from monomers, and can be applied with PA 6, 66, 12, and other polyamides.

3. Surface roughness
The surfaces of molded objects comprise have microscopic peaks and troughs with a range height, depths, and spacing. These minute details are called "surface roughness/ surface roughness." Surface roughness affects molding precision, surface feels, sealing, and coating performance.

■ Aspect Inc. website
■ ToraypearlPA6 website
■ ToraymillPPS website
■ January 27, 2020, news release, titled,
Toray Creates True Spherical Polyamide Particles that Could Revolutionize 3D Printing