As natural resources are becoming scarcer and the demand for individualized products is growing, industry is facing major economic and ecological challenges. As a response to them, it is looking for potential savings offered by production pro-cesses such as Laser Powder Bed Fusion (LPBF) and functionally optimized components. Indeed, this process can meet requi-rements such as increased functionality at the lowest possible weight or increased mechanical and corrosion resistance at extreme temperatures, while manufacturing components at short throughput times.
As it builds components layer by layer directly from CAD data, LPBF can produce highly complex components from metallic materials without needing form defined tools, components that cannot be produced using conventional production tech-niques such as casting or machining. Since production-related restrictions are eliminated, novel components with innovative functionalities can be built, thus saving resources and reducing emissions.
For LPBF to be fully established in new and existing production environments, however, a number of challenges still need to be mastered, and Fraunhofer ILT is conducting in-depth research to find their solutions. Our range of services in this area includes:
- Feasibility studies for various applications
- Integrated development from design to LPBF production all the way to post processing
- Development of new physical and digital process chains and their integration into existing production lines
- Process development on commercial plant systems
- Consulting, training and benchmarking