Selective Laser Melting Process Monitoring

As metal powder bed fusion systems continue to advance, the need for comprehensive process monitoring grows to ensure an integrated production process comparable to conventional manufacturing. SLM Solutions offers two modules that premiered at RAPID+TCT this year to monitor, document and verify selective laser melting builds, especially important for industries with high quality requirements.

 

Laser Power Monitoring

Laser Power Monitoring is a self-supporting, on-axis monitoring system to Laser Power Process Monitoringpermanently document the target and the actual emitted laser output during the entire production process. Measurements are recorded at a rate of 100,000 times per second and offer detection of irregularities and representation of laser power values throughout the build.

The instantaneous laser output is measured by uncoupling the laser beam in the optical path and reflecting it to a sensor. The display and analysis takes place in real time and any deviations are identified.

Advantages

  • Permanent monitoring of the actual power of the fiber laser
  • Quality assurance of build jobs
  • Cost reduction through error free parts

 

Melt Pool Monitoring

Melt Pool Process Monitoring

Melt Pool Monitoring is an on-axis tool to determine the thermal radiation from the melt on the powder bed. The process radiation occurring from the exposure of several vector types and the locally welded powder particles is a thermal signal diffusely emitted from the melt pool. Using pyrometers, measurements are taken at a rate of up to 100,000 times per second and the data is recorded in real time and saved layer by layer.

The recorded data enables analysis to identify potential irregularities during fusion that can indicate anomalies during the build. The system also supports the efficient further development and evaluation of process parameters

Advantages

  • Measurement parameters considered independent of material
  • Sequential output of thermal emission plot images of individual layers
  • Supports the development and evaluation of process parameters

 

The tools are another step toward developing comprehensive quality assurance systems to monitor the holistic production history of additively manufactured components. Process monitoring modules available for single lasers in late 2017. Contact your sales representative for more information.

 

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