Headmade Materials GmbH, Würzburg, Germany, reports that it has completed a €1.9 million funding round thanks to Industrial Technologies Fund of btov Partners, a European venture capital firm.
Headmade Materials was founded in 2019 as a spin-off from the Würzburg-based polymer research institute SKZ, and its sinter-based Additive Manufacturing process, which it calls Cold Fusion AM, was developed for the serial production of metal parts using an existing ecosystem of machines and processes in Additive Manufacturing and Powder Metallurgy.
Headmade Materials explains that the AM process is carried out with standard polymer Laser Beam Powder Bed Fusion (PBF-LB) systems, which are widely available on the market from established manufacturers. This reportedly allows customers to scale from a very capital-efficient entry point all the way to very high production output.
The company states that its technology is aimed at the Additive Manufacturing of series with up to 100,000 parts per year, thus having the potential to provide access to a new market segment for metal AM. Its Cold Fusion technology is said to offer users full flexibility and scalability at low investment cost. At the core of the process lies its Headmade feedstock, a combination of metal powder and a special polymer binder system.
This feedstock can reportedly be processed on almost any PBF-LB machine, giving users complete freedom to define the process chain depending on their own applications and needs. Parts are produced in the green state, and require a debinding and sintering process compatible with existing powder metallurgical processes (e.g. the MIM process), significantly simplifying process integration.
In addition to the sale of feedstock based on standard alloys (stainless steel 316L, titanium 6AI-4V), Headmade Materials also adapts individual alloys on request, e.g. hard or refractory metals. Customers are also supported in the design, part manufacturing and process integration of AM in their facilities.
The company explains that it will use the funds raised in this round for scaling up its technology, as well as for marketing and customer development.
“We have been working on the technology for five years and the partnership with btov now gives us the opportunity to accelerate the company’s development and realise our vision of 3D series production,” stated Christian Staudigel, Managing Director of Headmade Materials.
Robert Gallenberger, partner of the btov Industrial Technologies Fund, commented, “We see the Cold Metal Fusion technology as a very viable approach for serial production due to the high cost-efficiency of the process. The combination of mechanical part properties known from metal powder injection moulding (MIM) process and considerable process advantages, such as reduced safety requirements due to easier powder handling and higher green part stability, is also significant here.”