Design for AM

The convergence of Additive Manufacturing and Artificial Intelligence: Envisioning a future that is closer than you think

The frenzy of media attention surrounding Artificial Intelligence (AI) dwarfs the past hype surrounding Additive Manufacturing (AM). Whether you look to the future with fear or excitement, there is no escaping the wave of change that is coming. Whilst we once again hear words like ‘revolution’ being used – to which so many have become immune – Dr Omar Fergani believes that we are now at a crucial point of convergence for AM and AI. Here, he explains why AM is in an especially strong position to leverage the potential of AI, with the power to transform many areas of our industry, from part design to machine operation, quality management and beyond. ... Read more »

Cybersecurity in Additive Manufacturing: Securing the industry’s future

In the digital world of Additive Manufacturing, just how cybersecure are your operations and your customers’ critical parts? A survey of AM producers has suggested that the answer is probably not secure enough. In this article, Auburn University’s Prof Mark Yampolskiy, and industry analyst Joseph Kowen, present a high-altitude overview of the security threats facing those in the AM community. Cybersecurity, they suggest, should be considered as no less important than metallurgy or ‘Design for AM’ and, with the development of AM-specific standards and third-party security solutions, it need not be an overwhelming task. ... Read more »

A stronger future, layer by layer: How next-generation software will drive adoption of metal AM

The growth of metal Additive Manufacturing has been held back, believes Oqton’s Dr Ben Schrauwen, by a specific set of challenges: repeatability, cost, and the need for a high level of expertise. This article considers how next-generation software solutions that leverage Artificial Intelligence, cloud computing, and hybrid modelling are improving metal AM workflows. By addressing all three challenges, Schrauwen believes that metal AM can achieve faster and deeper adoption, leading to a more efficient and innovative future. ... Read more »

Case study: The development of a multi-material heat sink by Additive Manufacturing using Aerosint technology

Additive Manufacturing offers the opportunity to transform industrial production. Currently, however, AM components are typically produced in only one material, which in many cases does not allow for full performance utilisation. In this article, Xiaoshuang Li and Arthur Seibel describe, through a heat sink case study, how multi-material design and manufacturing can increase component performance as well as integrate additional functionalities when using the Laser Beam Powder Bed Fusion (PBF-LB) process. ... Read more »

Additive Manufacturing for jewellery and watchmaking: Exploring the potential of sinter-based technologies

Three years ago, Metal AM magazine published a widely read article on the use of Laser Beam Powder Bed Fusion (PBF-LB) technology for precious metal jewellery production. Today, the continuing rise of sinter-based AM technologies promises to open up the jewellery sector yet further, with new opportunities for both mass-market production as well as bespoke pieces. Chiara Armbruster, Sonja Kappler, Carlo Burkhardt, Gerald Mitteramskogler and Apollinaria Frydmann offer an overview of this new generation of solutions and the state of the technology. A number of application examples are also presented. ... Read more »

Smart sensor-integrated parts by AM: A look at a novel possibility with industrial applications

Additive Manufacturing processes offer a high degree of design freedom. The Laser Beam Powder Bed Fusion of metals (PBF-LB/M), in particular, has established itself for series applications of complex-shaped parts in numerous industries. In this article, Prof Dr-Ing Christian Seidel considers the next major step in PBF-LB, which could offer designers unknown potential: the production of sensor-integrated AM parts. Methods and solutions for the manufacturing of sensor-integrated AM parts are presented and industry-relevant case studies showcased, illustrating the potential offered by sensor-integrated ‘smart parts.’ ... Read more »

Anatomy of an AM part failure: Lessons for managers, designers and producers from 2021’s Olympic bike crash

In the men’s track cycling team pursuit qualifying at the 2020 Olympics, broadcast live to a global audience, a handlebar part produced by metal Additive Manufacturing failed with catastrophic consequences for the rider, Australia’s Alex Porter. Six months later, a forensic analysis of the incident was published as a 170-page report. The good news is that the company that made the AM part, along with the technology itself, were cleared of blame. So: what went wrong, and what lessons can be learned? Robin Weston digs into the details. [First published in Metal AM Vol. 8 No. 2, Summer 2022] ... Read more »

Opening the discussion: How the humble bottle opener demonstrates the importance of requirements in AM

Designs not driven by requirements increase the risk of an incomplete solution. This relatively simple statement gets to the heart of how designers need to be approaching AM, particularly when balancing the ‘design freedoms’ offered by the technology with the reality of viable and profitable production. Through an exploration of the ubiquitous AM bottle opener, John Barnes, Jennifer Coyne and Chelsea Cummings, The Barnes Global Advisors, and Jon Meyer, APWorks, explore how, by focusing on requirements, a data-driven approach ensures fully functional designs that deliver on multiple requirements for the lowest cost. [First published in Metal AM Vol. 7 No. 1, Spring 2022] ... Read more »

Simufact Additive: Accelerating the metal Binder Jetting workflow with sintering simulation

The ability to ‘design out’ distortion during sintering is seen as key to enabling the faster commercialisation of metal Binder Jetting (BJT). The Simufact Additive software platform, now on the third release of its BJT sintering module, is able to accurately simulate the sintering process, predicting shrinkage, slumping and friction-related distortion, either with or without ‘live’ and ‘ceramic’ setters, resulting in a downloadable ‘compensated’ component geometry to be fed directly to the AM machine. In this article, Jeff Robertson explores through case studies how The ExOne Company has been using the software in its AM adoption and R&D centres to optimise customer parts for sintering. [First published in Metal AM Vol. 6 No. 3, Autumn 2021] ... Read more »

I want to break free: The journey towards reducing or eliminating support structures in Additive Manufacturing

Design for AM
October 20, 2021

Support structures have been there for us since the beginning of AM, anchoring us to a firm foundation and taking the heat when things get intense. But they also bring with them baggage that is now holding us back, blocking channels and taking up valuable time and materials. Is it time to break free? In this article, Jennifer Coyne and John Barnes, of The Barnes Global Advisors, explore our journey so far with support structures, their advantages and disadvantages, and consider the opportunities and impact of the shift towards ‘support free’ strategies. Through three case studies, cost and productivity of conventional and ‘support free’ production are compared. [First published in Metal AM Vol. 6 No. 3, Autumn 2021] ... Read more »

The future is Additive Manufacturing – if we take a more holistic view of the design opportunities

The uptake of Additive Manufacturing by industry, believes Autodesk’s Paul Sohi, has been both stratospherically high and confusingly low. In explaining and addressing this dichotomy, Sohi explores the multiple potentials of AM when approached by taking a more holistic view of design challenges. Whilst there is no doubt that the popularisation of AM technology is influencing how we design products by shifting the design language to embrace more complex or nonstandard forms, Sohi believes that this is where the application of AM seems to be stagnating. So, how can we close the loop from design to manufacturing? [First published in Metal AM Vol. 7 No. 2, Summer 2021] ... Read more »

Forging a process for mass customisation via metal Additive Manufacturing

Metal Additive Manufacturing technologies offer the potential for true mass customisation, but in order to leverage this opportunity, new, complex workflows and business models have to be implemented. In this article, Siemens Digital Industries Software’s Ashley Eckhoff considers the challenges when addressing the topic, from the addition of further complexity, to an already challenging Additive Manufacturing workflow, to traceability and regulation. By adapting the AM process to meet these needs, companies can reap the benefits of new markets uniquely suited to this technology. [First published in Metal AM Vol. 7 No. 2, Summer 2021] ... Read more »

About Metal Additive Manufacturing magazine

Metal AM magazine, published quarterly in digital and print formats, is read by a rapidly expanding international audience.

Our audience includes component manufacturers, end-users, materials and equipment suppliers, analysts, researchers and more.

In addition to providing extensive industry news coverage, Metal AM magazine is known for exclusive, in-depth articles and technical reports.

Our focus is the entire metal AM process from design to application.

Each issue is available as an easy-to-navigate digital edition and a high-quality print publication.

In the latest issue of Metal AM magazine

Download PDF
 

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

  • BMW Group: Laying the foundations for the application of metal Additive Manufacturing in the automotive industry
  • Predicting the metal Additive Manufacturing market – and breaking the hype cycle
  • China’s thriving metal Additive Manufacturing industry: An outsider’s perspective
  • Enhancing the productivity of Additive Manufacturing facilities through PBF-LB automation
  • Award-winning metal AM parts from the MPIF’s 2024 Design Excellence Awards
  • Performance of eddy currents for the in-situ detection of defects during PBF-LB metal AM

The world of metal AM to your inbox

Don't miss any new issue of Metal AM magazine, and get the latest industry news. Sign up to our twice weekly newsletter.

Sign up

Looking for AM machines, metal powders or part manufacturing services?

Discover suppliers of these and more in our comprehensive advertisers’ index and buyer’s guide, available in the back of Metal AM magazine.

  • AM machines
  • Process monitoring & calibration
  • Heat treatment & sintering
  • HIP systems & services
  • Pre- & post-processing technology
  • Powders, powder production and analysis
  • Part manufacturers
  • Consulting, training & market data
View online

Discover our magazine archive…

The free to access Metal Additive Manufacturing magazine archive offers unparalleled insight into the world of metal Additive Manufacturing from a commercial and technological perspective through:

  • Reports on visits to leading metal AM part manufacturers and industry suppliers
  • Articles on technology and application trends
  • Information on materials developments
  • Reviews of key technical presentations from the international conference circuit
  • International industry news

All past issues are available to download as free PDFs or view in your browser.

Browse the archive