Additive Manufacturing in plastic using Selective Laser Sintering and in metal using Direct Metal Laser Sintering (DMLS) technologies
Additive Manufacturing (AM) – also referred to as 3D Printing – produces functional, aesthetic plastic parts using Selective Laser Sintering and complex, lightweight metal parts using Direct Metal Laser Sintering (DMLS), in a range of high performance materials.
These layer-based technologies produce anything from a one-off prototype for design approval, trial and test, through to end-use production components to be used in true working environments. With the ability to produce living hinge and snap fittings, previous assemblies can now be built as a single piece incorporating these features into the design, thereby increasing functionality and eliminating the need for time consuming post-assembly.
Produced directly from 3D CAD data, complexity of design and geometry becomes more achievable when using these technologies, and intricate details can be easily replicated and previously ‘impossible’ structures and forms created. By fusing together layers of nylon or metal powders via a computer-directed heat laser, it is possible to create undercuts, channels through sections, tubes within tubes and internal voids. Freeing up designers to create parts in new ways, they can be used in a range of high performance applications including aerospace, tooling for injection moulding or die casting, medical devices or Formula 1 cars, withstanding rigorous testing at high temperatures in some extremely demanding environments.
Watch our Additive Manufacturing videos which will take you through the processes step by step, from beginning to end:-