Integrating 3D printing into production of textiles and plastics

By combining 3D printing with existing production technologies it is possible to print 3D structures directly onto different materials such as textiles. Sirris, Centexbel and UGent have started a new project for examining the potential and taking it a step further. Would you like to know more about 3D printing and the opportunities it offers to the textile and plastics sectors? Come along to the kick-off meeting on 15 October!

One of the most significant evolutions in technology today is undoubtedly 'additive manufacturing' or AM, of which 3D printing is the best known and includes high-end applications such as 3D-printers for domestic use. Additive manufacturing is where an object is gradually built up layer by layer and is currently mainly used for creating individual items. However, AM can also become part of a new hybrid technology in combination with traditional production processes. 3D structures can be printed directly onto materials manufactured using traditional production processes and can therefore provide additional opportunities for the textile and plastics manufacturing industries. From an exploratory project (, small scale studies have demonstrated the opportunities available from printing in three dimensions directly onto a substrate - textile or plastics.   

Fused deposition modelling

A new project titled, 'Potential of fused deposition modelling (3D printing) in the textile and plastics manufacturing sector' (FDM4TP), that started on 1 October 2014, provides further technological support and is investigating to find a wider range of applications and encourage the integration of 3D printing technologies in the current production processes within the textile and plastics manufacturing industries. The project is going to run until 30 September 2018 and was set up by Centexbel, Sirris and the Centre for Polymer and Material Technology (CPMT) at UGent, with financial support from IWT. 


The kick-off meeting will be held at Centexbel in Zwijnaarde at 14.00 on 15 October. 

The following subjects will be covered at the meeting:

  • What is 'additive manufacturing'/3D printing?
  • Opportunities and actual applications in 3D printing
  • Presentation of the results from the exploratory project into 3D prints on textiles and plastics
  • Introduction of campaigns at FDM4TP
  • Introduction of the partners Centexbel, Sirris, UGent-CPMT
  • Demonstration of 3D printing 

Followed by an open discussion and ending with refreshments. 

Participation in the kick-off meeting is free, but you must register beforehand. Interested in the opportunities offered by 3D printing? Send an e-mail to to reserve a place at the meeting.

Further information about the project can be found here