Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology showcases reduced cost Additive Manufacturing at laser show

July 18, 2017

Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology showcases reduced cost Additive Manufacturing at laser show

An AM system at work at the Aachen Center for 3D Printing, a cooperation between the Aachen University of Applied Sciences and Fraunhofer ILT (Courtesy Fraunhofer ILT)

 

Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT, Aachen, Germany, has reported that it recently attended the LASER World of PHOTONICS 2017, June 26–29, Munich, Germany. The Institute showcased a wide range of technologies from the fields of applied laser technology and beam-source development, ranging from diode and fibre lasers to new measurement technology, and even laser systems for use in space. Among the offerings showcased was the institute’s new metal Additive Manufacturing machine.

While metal Additive Manufacturing is already used on an industrial scale and has made strides to penetrate the global market, the costs of machines and accompanying technologies can be prohibitively high for smaller enterprises. According to Fraunhofer ILT, many small companies have good ideas which could be achieved through AM, but are prevented from pursuing their goals by the cost. 

Fraunhofer ILT’s  metal Additive Manufacturing machine incorporates a four-axis system that can be used with various metal powders and includes, in addition to a 140 W diode laser, a shielding gas device and open-source control software. High levels of interest were reported at the show, with both small machine and tool builders asking about it as well as experienced users who wanted to qualify new materials using the low-cost system.

“We want to bring Additive Manufacturing to SMEs”, explained Professor Johannes Henrich Schleifenbaum, Chair of the newly established Digital Additive Production DAP at the Faculty of Mechanical Engineering at RWTH Aachen University. “In addition to this, we can offer the necessary training.” A training seminar will be offered at Fraunhofer ILT, usually taking two to five days.

www.ilt.fraunhofer.de

In the latest issue of Metal AM magazine

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Extensive AM industry news coverage, as well as the following exclusive deep-dive articles:

  • Revolution, not evolution: General Motors on building an AM culture and the AM Dream Machine
  • The power of Additive Manufacturing in the hands of artists: Public works to small batch production
  • Growing momentum and broadening recognition: A status update on the rise of Electron Beam PBF
  • Improving carbon capture efficiency through Additive Manufacturing in the race for a liveable climate
  • The System of AM Systems: How Metal Powder Works’ in-process powder production could change metal AM
  • The next generation: Using metal AM to drive emissions reduction and educate the engineers of the future
  • Advances in the AM of refractory metals and hard materials at the 20th Plansee Seminar
  • Additive Manufacturing needs you: Why you and your company should get involved in standards development

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