Arcam EBM additively manufactures Thomas Edison bust in titanium

August 29, 2018

Arcam EBM additively manufactures Thomas Edison bust in titanium


An R&D technician working at Arcam EBM, a GE Additive company based in Gothenburg, Sweden, recently tested the capabilities of Arcam’s Q20plus Electron Beam Additive Manufacturing system by producing a bust of GE’s founder, Thomas Edison, in titanium. The whole build is said to have taken ninety hours, and the resulting sculpture stands 387 mm tall.

Oskar Zielinski, who is responsible for the maintenance, modification and repair of EBAM systems at Arcam EBM, created the sculpture in twenty-five parts. Each part featured a different net structure to test the machine’s capabilities when producing complex internal filigree or lattice structures.

According to Zielinski, all 4,300, 90 µm layers were produced in a single build, with only minimal support structures required between the outer skins of the slices. The internal net structures required no support at all.

“I am really happy with the result; this final piece is huge,” stated Zielinski. “I keep wondering though what Thomas Edison would have thought if someone would have told him during the 19th century about the technology that exists today.”


A time lapse film shows the bust’s build process, as captured from from inside the machine using an Arcam LayerQa, normally used for defect detection in AM parts (Courtesy Arcam EBM)

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