Selective laser melting

Description

Laser melting, also selective laser melting (SLM), is also an additive manufacturing method, which creates complex space structures. During selective laser melting, a powdered metal raw material is applied in one layer to a base plate and locally fused by the laser beam, creating a firm material layer free of pores and cracks. Afterwards the base plate is lowered by one layer thickness and the powder applied again.

This process is repeated as long as all the layers are fused and the workpiece is completed. After removing the excess powder, the workpiece can be used immediately. The raw materials are used in powdered form and in a protective atmosphere with argon or nitrogen in order to prevent the contamination of the powder with oxygen.

Basic requirements for laser melting are three-dimensional geometric data of the workpiece, usually in a STL-format, processed as layer data, so that numerous layers can be created by so-called “slicing”. An advantage of SLM is that the mechanical characteristics of the finished piece are very similar to those of the base material, production does not need any form requirements and has absolute geometrical design freedom.

Characteristics

Stability in Selective Laser Melting Stability
Cost of Selective Laser Melting Costs
Accuracy in Selective Laser Melting Accuracy
Special features of Selective Laser Melting Special features Different metals possible

Materials

Metals

Powder

Description
  • Aluminium
  • Stainless steel
Dimensions
  • Max. Length: 250 mm
  • Max. Width: 250 mm
  • Max. Height: 310 mm
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