Part One of this two-part series explores the fast-changing state of additive manufacturing (AM) technology. In the middle of all this fast-paced change, one thing is certain: When the cost per part of AM goes down, new markets open up as more shops recognize how they can manage special requests from their customers, respond faster by eliminating the need to produce tooling and do it all without disrupting their primary production capacity. Take a closer look at some of the innovations taking place in the fast-paced world of additive manufacturing:
Sawing 3D Printed Parts
Using an integrated 180 deg turning device and intelligent control system, the automatic KASTOwin amc band saw from KASTO makes individual precision offcuts of 3D printed components with maximum productivity and safety.
Why the Cheapest Powder Doesn’t Produce the Cheapest Parts
Additive manufacturing may be at the cutting edge of production technology, but LPW Technology proves how the old rule still applies when it comes to the quality of material: buy cheap, buy twice.
Game Changer: 3D Printing H13 Tool Steel
For manufacturers of high volume plastic parts and those building injection molds or tooling for high strength, high temperature applications, this hot-work tool steel from Markforged can now be printed with unique and complex geometries to accelerate their speed to market.
Hybrid Systems Finish 3D Printed Parts in Single Setups
Hybrid multi-tasking technologies from Mazak combine both additive and conventional subtractive processes to eliminate work-in-process, reduce lead times, improve part accuracy, shorten setup times and streamline processes.
Next Generation Controlled Atmosphere DED Systems
LENS CS 600 and CS 800 Controlled Atmosphere (CA) DED systems from Optomec provide high cost-to-performance ratios on demanding jobs ranging from precision deposition to cladding applications.
Another Way to Build Complex Parts with Dissimilar Metals
Laminated object manufacturing uses diffusion bonding to fuse thin layers of similar or dissimilar metals together and build complex metal parts with internal passageways for conformal cooling, heat exchangers, liquid/gas dispensing and other difficult applications.
Advanced Post Processing for Leaner Additive Manufacturing
By combining heat treatment and cooling into a single process for stress relief, heat treating and aging of parts in a single cycle, the QIH 60 hot isostatic press from Quintus reduces the number of steps in the production line to accelerate the AM process.
Software to Automate Build Preparation, Monitor the Build Process
Renishaw offers QuantAM Dental to cut build preparation time for hundreds of dental frameworks in a single operation, and InfiniAM Spectral to analyze process monitoring data in real-time.
Constructing a ‘First Time Right’ Print
Using a digital twin to simulate the build process prior to printing, Additive Manufacturing Process Simulation from Siemens predicts distortion during 3D printing and automatically generates the corrected geometry to compensate for it.
Bigger Prints with Selective Laser Sintering
The next-generation Lisa 3D printer from Sinterit uses PA11 Onyx material to build functional final moving parts, enclosures, latch systems, handles, sporting goods, hinges and fall-proof elements with improved flexibility and outstanding thermal, chemical and impact resistance.
The New Age of Mold Making
Used in making plastic components for optical applications, this 3D printed mold from toolcraft has optimized topology, is smaller and weighs less, is easier to manufacture and significantly improves the process of producing the plastic parts.
Build Preparation is No Longer an Afterthought
Flow software from Velo3D integrates print preparation, simulation and composing capabilities to predict and control the outcome of building any design and assure its accuracy and consistency.
Unison Ups Product Support Scope, Accessibility with ‘UltimateCare’
The rebranded service program facilitates selection of the right maintenance solutions, and also offers additional services such as CAD modellng, component prototyping and process optimization. Customers can choose services ala-carte or in tailored, bundled agreements.
Paperless Parts Launches Search Function to Expedite Quoting
Paperless Search, a digital search tool enhancing the quoting platform from Paperless Parts, provides easy access to all formats of historical data, and it’s available now to Paperless Parts customers.
In Development: New Laser System Creates Grease-Repellent Metal Surfaces
Funded by an EU grant, a European consortium is treating metal with high-power lasers that texture the surface with microscopic spikes that prevent grease and bacteria from sticking. Rough micro-topography acts like a bed of nails to stop dirt or liquid from attaching.