Lancashire3D Ltd, the largest 3D printing studio in the North of England, announced today that it has become the first UK based studio to deliver on the circular production promise in which resources are reused again and again to benefit the 3D printing ecosystem and environment by reducing its waste and recycling on site.
Currently there exists no plastic waste recycling facilities in the region that process post 3D Printing waste and the majority goes to landfill. By collecting both internal production waste plastic (e.g. support material, spool plastic and failed prints) and allowing customers to return used or unwanted 3D printed parts, Lancashire3D is converting it back into raw materials that can be used once again for 3D printing. It is anticipated that Lancashire3D Ltd will reclaim more than 165 kilograms of plastic wastage (Bioplastics and Oil-based) in a 12 month period from the primary 3D printing process alone under its sustainable plastics program.
Called the Sustainable Range these recycled plastics will complement its existing Filamentive recycled plastics and will be offered to customers at a discounted price, allowing Lancashire3D Ltd to pass on the savings from reclaiming plastics.
“We know that the planet has a finite amount of resources and that we all need to take more responsibility. Governments are making plans to take action, consumers are vowing to change their behaviour, and businesses like ours are stepping up to help. By creating a circular economy (production), which means that when finished with, 3D printing material returns for recycling and is changed back to printable material and reused, waste is seen as a resource and part of a continuous cycle,” commented Steven Pearson, Co-Founder at Lancashire3D Ltd.
“We bring more than 10 years technology, design and industry experience and are committed to developing truly innovative ways to marry the art and science of 3D printing, while delivering on our vision to recycle and reuse as much as possible. We also want to continue to enlighten our partners about what we do and how by making a few small changes they can have less impact on our environment with no impact on the quality of their product.”
Progress on Plastic
In 2018 Lancashire3D Ltd announced a series of commitments to sustainable production and to being able to recycle 100% of its waste thermoplastic material. Always actively looking for new ways to drive the 3D printing industry forward, while enforcing strict quality assurance*, here are some of the ways it has made progress to meet these commitments:
● 95% of Lancashire3D Ltd’s waste production plastic is reclaimed and recycled. Waste plastic is processed in-house and recycled back into sustainable 3D printing material. By recycling onsite Lancashire3D Ltd is able to further reduce its carbon footprint, by not transporting to external recycling centres.
● Lancashire3D Ltd uses up to 100% recycled content in its plastics.
● In 2018 Lancashire3D Ltd partnered with the industry leader in sustainable 3D printing materials (Filamentive) who incorporate waste streams, such as plastic food containers and drinks bottles and these are used for some materials. Any waste created during production from these input plastics is then further recycled in-house.
● Lancashire3D Ltd uses 100% recyclable eco packaging (paper based).
Note: Since its inception, Lancashire3D Ltd has offered 100% plant based plastics. While the bioplastics (e.g. PLA (Polylactic acid)) are considered biodegradable, industrial composting facilities are required to make this viable and are not currently available in the UK. It can take up to 1000 years to decompose in landfill.
Sustainability has been part of Lancashire3D’s mission since its launch in April 2018 and during the last year it has distinguished itself as a 3D powerhouse offering advanced in-house services such as 3D scanning and reverse engineering, enabling customers to have physical objects digitally reproduced and 3D printed within hours of the receipt of a design. It’s services deliver significant value to clients looking for immediate results within a short timeframe at a competitive price point. Specialising in high-quality FFF and SLA Resin (including engineering grade), both general and Engineering grade thermoplastics and photopolymers are used and stocked.
Its Lancashire based studio and plant opened in January 2019 and has allowed it to handle a greater range of engineering materials and welcome clients to visit and share their projects and requirements in person. The large capacity** has further accelerated its R&D and production capacity, driving 80 % growth to date in 2019.
Lancashire3D Ltd supports a wide range of industries including: Automotive, film production, energy management, marine research, medical instruments, product development, vehicle telematics and waste management.