Sigma Labs to implement PrintRite3D software for AM at Northwestern University
March 7, 2020
Sigma Labs, Inc., Santa Fe, New Mexico, USA, reports that it has been awarded a contract to implement its PrintRite3D Real-Time Melt Pool Analytics technology at Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois, USA.
The company states that it will collaborate with two university research centres at Northwestern University, Northwestern Initiative on Manufacturing Science and Innovation (NIMSI) and Center for Hierarchical Materials Design (CHiMaD), to integrate the PrintRite3D system with a DMG Mori LASERTEC12 Laser Powder Bed Fusion (L-PBF) machine. Researchers at NIMSI have reportedly developed computer-integrated systems for innovative manufacturing processes, including subtractive, deformation-based and additive processes.
PrintRite3D is Sigma Labs’ in-process quality assurance software for the commercial metal Additive Manufacturing industry, providing real-time melt pool analytics. The software uses thermal signatures to monitor the quality of each product part in the production process, layer by layer and in real-time, allowing operators to correct or stop production of a defective part, resulting in reduced error rates and higher yields. The software is currently being evaluated by tier-1 aerospace and OEM partners worldwide.
According to Sigma Labs, it will collaborate with Northwestern to further validate the performance and capabilities of Sigma’s technology to identify real-time defect formations during the Additive Manufacturing process. The company states that the DMG MORI LASERTEC 12 machine is another new platform for Sigma Labs, highlighting its ability to be used as an agnostic in-process quality system on all major L-PBF machine brands.
Northwestern explains that faculty associated with NIMSI and CHiMaD has collaboratively worked on predictive ICME (Integrated Computational Materials Engineering) tools for Additive Manufacturing to innovate manufacturing processes and to develop new alloys. Jian Cao, Cardiss Collins Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Director of NIMSI, commented, “Sigma Labs provides us with one critical element in our ICME framework for model validation and for process control. We look forward to our collaboration to bring the science and technology of Additive Manufacturing to the next level.”
“We are honoured to have the opportunity to work with Northwestern University,” stated Mark Ruport, Executive Chairman of Sigma Labs. “This type of collaboration is critical if Additive Manufacturing is to realise its potential and reach full industrialisation.”