Additive Manufacturing (3D Printing)
Selective Laser Melting, Laser Sintering, Stereolithography and Rapid Prototyping
Additive manufacturing (AM) is the fabrication technique most associated with the fourth industrial revolution: the digitalized production. Why? Because it allows the cost-effective creation of components directly from 3D CAD data, even in very small series down to batch size 1. Thus, highly customizable parts can be produced from an ever growing number of materials like metals, synthetic resins or plastics.
Additionally, AM offers great freedom of design. Complex geometries, impossible to produce with conventional methods, are easily realized. For instance, components can directly exhibit integrated functionality like optimized cooling channels. Scan systems as the key element of AM machines are indispensable for the precise, flexible and highly dynamic fabrication of the versatile parts.
The scan systems used for AM applications are as diverse as the processes themselves. The spectrum ranges from small to large apertures, from UV to IR wavelengths and from standard 2D to customized 3D systems. The particularly challenging high-end applications like metal powder bed fusion require both high speeds and high accuracy.
This can only be met with high-performance scan systems that feature for example lowest-drift galvos with digital encoders, innovative control schemes like SCANahead or integrated process control options. These xy scan systems, optionally augmented by dynamic z-axes, are best driven by interactive control boards like the RTC 6 and RTC 5 with their 20-bit resolution SL2-100 protocol, thus reaching optimal precision and throughput even for voluminous workpieces.
Laser Applications Freely Cross Industrial Boundaries
Laser processing methods are employed in numerous industries. Click a specific industry link to see a selection of processing methods that use galvanometer scanners.