The best of two worlds

We have combined the advantages of 3D printing with the advantages of powder metallurgy to create a 3D printing solution that will permanently shape the possibilities of metal 3D printing with robust processes.

Part design

Additively designed parts allow a much higher degree of design freedom and complexity compared to classic manufacturing processes. Due to the greater freedom of design, additional product features, cheaper production or higher part performance are possible.

3D printing process

The part is built up layer by layer at low temperature (< 80 ° Celsius) on cheap and from many manufacturers available laser sintering systems for plastics (SLS) by melting the plastic-binder. No support structures are necessary in the construction process itself, which also enables the parts to be placed freely in the build job.

Depowdering green parts with water jet

Depowdering

The finished build job is then de-powdered, whereby the de-powdering can also be automated using air pressure or water jet due to the very high green part stability. Due to the low temperature impact during the construction process, the not processed feedstock can be completely reused.

Post processing of green parts

The high strength of the green parts not only helps in the depowdering step, but also allows mechanical (turning, milling, drilling, grinding) post-processing before sintering to the metal part. This offers great added value, especially for materials that are difficult to machine.

Debinding

Die Grünteile werden bei geringen Temperaturen in einem Lösemittel vorentbindert, wobei sich dort bereits ein Bestandteil des Bindersystems löst. Durch eine anschließende Destillation kann das Lösemittel wieder aufbereitet und im Prozess beliebig oft wiederverwendet werden. Insgesamt ist die Lösemittelentbinderung sehr kostengünstige und umweltschonende im Vergleich zu anderen Entbinderungsprozessen.

The green parts are debinded at low temperatures in a solvent to dissolve a component of the binder system. Subsequent distillation enables the solvent to be reprocessed and reused as often as required in the process. Overall, solvent debinding is very inexpensive and environmentally friendly compared to other debinding processes.

Sintering

Nach der Vorentbinderung erfolgt der Sinterprozess zum Vollmetallbauteil. Dabei werden die Bauteile langsam auf Sintertemperatur erhitzt, wobei der verbleibende Kunststoff bereits bei mittleren Temperaturen rückstandslos verbrennt. Auf Sintertemperatur des Metalls sintern die Metallpartikel zu einem dichten Vollmetallbauteil zusammen. Dabei schrumpfen die Bauteile definiert, im Beispiel von Edelstahl 316L um ca. 13%.

After the debinding, the sintering step to receive a full metal part takes place. The furnance is slowly heated to sintering temperature while the remaining plastic-binder burns without residue already at medium temperatures. At the sintering temperature of the metal, the metal particles sinter together to form a dense solid metal part. The parts shrink evenly, in the example of stainless steel 316L by approx. 13%.

Material spectrum of powder metallurgy

By integrating metal powder into our highly functional binder system, all metals in powder metallurgy are available for additive processing.

Up to 90% lower part costs

Low system and operating costs as well as a significantly higher part output result in up to 80% lower part costs.

High green part stability

Our high green part stability enables easy post-processing like turning, joining, milling or drilling. This is an enormous advantage, especially for alloys that are difficult to process.

Full reusability of the feedstock

Not processed feedstock can be fully reused.

8x higher part output

Processing our feedstock on SLS systems enables a high part output, which allows real series production for the first time.

Metal parts with familiar characteristics

In addition to a density of up to 99.9%, our metal parts also have the same properties as those from other powder metallurgical processes.

Reliable and widespread machinery

SLS systems, debinding systems and sintering furnaces are reliable, widespread and easy to maintain. And in addition to the established providers, our process also runs on SLS entry-level machines.

40x higher part output within reach

Developments in the SLS-technology, especially diode lasers, will bring significant productivity leaps.

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sieve to depowder the metal parts
The path of metal 3D printing into series production

3D printing process, advantages, design and field of application. Find out how you can leverage metal 3D printing with our Cold Metal Fusion technology.

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The chain links made of titanium are a small series (400 parts) for use in a packaging machine. The chain links were previously made of plastic, but could not persuade with their mechanical properties. The chain links, which consist of two parts, have been re-designed in the titanium alloy Ti6Al4V and promise both light weight and robust properties.

3 weeks have passed from the redesign to 3D printing and the first live test. With the speed and choice of materials, 3D printing can fully exploit its advantages compared to conventional manufacturing processes.