Additive Manufacturing Case Study

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The usage of Additive Manufacturing is rising with an increasing rate. Instead of molding, casting, or machining products and its parts out of the piece of metal or plastic, larger than product, with Additive Manufacturing they are “printed”. Printing done by devices that build up very thin layers of metal or plastic, where layers, used to produce an object, could be smaller than the diameter of a human hair (Dupin 2015). Additive Manufacturing (AM) and 3D printing are the two terms, which are used interchangeably. 3D printing is a quickly growing type of technology that dangers conventional manufacturing processes (Seally 2012). Moreover, according to Forrest and Cao (2013, 66) “additive manufacturing is as a key driver behind the on-going …show more content…
The SLS process uses powder materials to produce 3D solid parts from CAD file. After the CAD data is uploaded to machine computer in the Stereo lithography file format, the process of sintering starts. From figure 1, it can be observed that SLS system contains three chambers. There are two chambers that is used to store powder and central chamber, where parts of the product is built. The right and left chambers are also called feed chambers and they have a platform that is controlled by piston, which is designed to move upward in order to provide a new layer of powder. It moves upward, because the new layer has to be deposited on top of the already sintered layer. The roller is able to move horizontally in both directions to spread the powder from right and left chambers over the central area. In order to fuse the powder on top of the previous layer without thermal distortion the entire bed is heated below the melting point of powder by infrared heaters. Then the powder is sintered into preferred shape by using CO2 laser light that has enough power. After sintered part is cooled for sufficient time, the bed part is lowered by a thickness of a one layer and roller spreads a new powder layer. This process is repeated layer by layer until the entire product is completed. Then final product is cleared from un-sintered powder and the un-sintered powder is recycled again. Moreover, un-sintered powder acts as a support while the product is being printed (Sachdeva et al, 2012,

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