Working toward sustainability in 3D printing through a more eco-friendly product development
As important as sustainability is within our organization, we realized our core goal of promoting Responsible Manufacturing should be followed at both the organizational level and also be served by directly contributing to it through the industrial 3D printing solutions we provide. In this spirit, we've made developing responsible products a major priority in recent years.
With additive manufacturing (AM) steadily proliferating through more and more industries, we have an incredible opportunity to help customers reduce their carbon footprint as we strive toward our achievement of climate targets. The strides we've made in responsible products are just the beginning.
Products to embody the EOS purpose
We formally introduced Responsible Products into the EOS polymer powder catalog in 2022, making us the first company in the AM industry to do so. Climate-neutral: Products for which all cradle-to-gate GHG emissions have been offset by investing into Gold Standard climate protection projects. Carbon-reduced: We reduce GHG emissions in these goods' production through the use of renewable energy and other suitable measures. We currently offer the following Responsible Products (with more to come — stay tuned!):
PA 1101 ClimateNeutral
Castor oil (sourced from renewable castor beans) is the basis of this climate-neutral polymer. Responsible Manufacturing practices are integral to PA 1101 ClimateNeutral production, and we invest in Gold Standard climate protection projects to offset the remaining GHG emissions.
Our PA 1101 ClimateNeutral comes with the same strong impact resistance, high elongation at break and strong mechanical and chemical heat resistance as PA 1101 while being climate-neutral. This makes it an ideal substitute for the injection-molded PA6. We're just as proud of the value add it brings our customers as we are of its eco-efficient production.
PA 2200 CarbonReduced
While this carbon-reduced polymer powder is petrol-based, we use renewable energy in its production to ensure a diminished carbon footprint — 44% less CO2e than a material of comparable composition. We've also carried out a life cycle analysis of both, the conventional PA 2200 as well as the PA 2200 CarbonReduced through a partnership with Fraunhofer EMI to give customers transparency into the polymer's carbon footprint.
As with PA 1101 ClimateNeutral, the Responsible Manufacturing practices used to produce PA 2200 CarbonReduced in no way diminish its quality. It's rigid and boasts impressive tensile strength alongside good chemical resistance.
How we gauge a responsible product
Calculating just how eco-friendly our responsible products are involves determining all direct greenhouse gases (GHGs) emitted in the manufacturing of these goods — as well as upstream emissions — using the carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2e) measurement. ISO 14040/44 and 14067, the GHG Protocol and the BSI Group's PAS 2060 carbon neutrality standard serve as our guidelines as well as our internal Responsible Products management system provides our guidelines for our Responsible Products.
To periodically verify EOS' adherence to the standards listed above, we're externally audited by TÜV SÜD, one of the world's best-known third-party oversight and testing firms. This allows us to be completely transparent and accurate in the data we provide regarding our responsible products.
Ensuring responsibility to our customers
Before customers even make a purchase decision regarding our responsible products — or any other EOS offering — they can use the Cost & Carbon Calculator to predict cost per part and project the carbon footprint resulting from 3D printing a given component. This analysis factors in emissions sources ranging from materials and energy consumption to end-use applications.
In the interest of transparency, when our customers buy our climate-neutral or carbon-reduced products, they'll receive certificates verifying the sustainability bona fides of these goods. (We provide one certificate for each product sold on a calendar-year basis.) These customer certificates state the amount of GHG emissions the customer saved by purchasing our responsible products — data that has been audited and verified by TÜV SÜD. This information will be invaluable when customers need to produce their own carbon report and to achieve their own CO2e reduction targets.
Using science-based targets as our baseline, we are steadily working toward reducing the EOS carbon footprint and increasing our use of renewable and sustainable resources.
We continually strive to make our company a better, healthier and more diverse place to work, while also working to benefit the communities we live and work.
By going above and beyond our compliance benchmarks and holding all EOS employees to the highest standards, we mitigate risk and promote corporate responsibility.