Process optimization in additive manufacturing
With a newly developed blue laser for LASERTEC DED hybrid machines and improved features for the AM Assistant, DMG MORI is showing innovative solutions for additive manufacturing at formnext.
formnext in Frankfurt is an international trade fair for additive manufacturing technologies and upstream and downstream processes. DMG MORI will present its latest developments in this future-oriented business field from November 15 to 18, 2022. The exhibition will include a LASERTEC 30 DUAL SLM in process chain with a DMP 35 for post-processing as well as a LASERTEC 65 DED hybrid, which combines additive manufacturing and milling in one machine. Highlights at the DMG MORI booth include a newly developed blue laser for the hybrid machine. It offers significantly better absorption behavior, enabling the processing of pure copper, for example. In addition, there are new features in the AM Assistant. By controlling the decisive process variables, the combination of hardware and software ensures a stable manufacturing process.
As an innovation leader in machine tool manufacturing, DMG MORI has been complementing its broad portfolio of conventional manufacturing methods with additive technologies since 2013. The LASERTEC DED hybrid and LASERTEC SLM models thus enable holistic process chains from metal powder to high-precision finish machining. The broad spectrum of applications ranges from the production of complex prototypes and small series parts to tool making and the repair of wear parts. In the ADDITIVE INTELLIGENCE consulting unit, DMG MORI also supports beginners as well as experienced users in fully exploiting the potential of metallic 3D printing.
LASERTEC DED hybrid: Blue laser with optimal absorption rate
The blue laser newly developed by DMG MORI for LASERTEC DED hybrid models has a wavelength of 450 nm and is characterized by optimal absorption behavior. This is an advantage especially with reflective materials such as copper. The absorption rate in this case is 44 percent – compared to two percent for infrared light. The blue laser thus makes it possible in the first place to process copper. Due to its good thermal conductivity, the metal lends improved cooling properties to injection molds and forming tools, for example. In aerospace technology, it is used – as a bi-metal with nickel-based superalloys – in the heat shields of rocket nozzles. The good sliding properties of nonferrous metal also open up new applications – for example, copper-coated plain bearings in wind turbines.
New production and repair of tool molds
In the production of tool molds, multi-material applications play a major role, which can only be realized in this form by means of additive manufacturing. For example, die casting molds can be provided with a core made of a bronze alloy. A LASERTEC 65 DED hybrid builds up this core and mills highly functional cooling channels in the same process, which ensures optimum heat dissipation. This core is then provided with a layer of hot-work tool steel. The repair of tool molds is also possible with the machines of the LASERTEC DED hybrid series. Material is first applied to a damaged area. In the subsequent milling process, the finish machining is carried out in original quality. Depending on the size of the components, a LASERTEC 125 DED hybrid with significantly more working space is also suitable for such applications.
AM Assistant: Transparent and stable manufacturing process
For optimal and, above all, verifiable workpiece quality, it is crucial in additive manufacturing to continuously monitor and control the important process variables. The AM Assistant, a combination of hardware and software for LASERTEC DED and LASERTEC DED hybrid machines, monitors process variables such as laser power, powder mass flow, shielding gas, and melt pool temperature. Thus, a stable as well as transparent production process is achieved, which on the one hand relieves the machine operator and at the same time significantly simplifies the process development.
LASERTEC SLM: Two process chains for powder bed technology
Two process chains can be realized with the LASERTEC SLM series from DMG MORI: On the one hand, users can rework additively manufactured workpieces on a milling machine such as the 5-axis DMP 35 with the required surface quality. On the other hand, the models of the LASERTEC SLM series can finish previously milled base plates or bodies in the powder bed completely without support structures. While a zero-point clamping system creates a uniform interface for transferring the component between the powder bed and CNC machine, the app-based CELOS control interface ensures the continuous digital workflow. Thanks to the efficient flow of information and intuitive operation, CELOS guarantees optimal processes in the pre- and post-processing of additively manufactured components.
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