The new technology is being suggested by EOS as an alternative to injection moulding for a range of applications, and sees nearly a million diode laser melting materials to build parts layer by layer. It is said to be a result of EOS’ 30 years-worth of endeavour to optimise the interaction between powered material and laser, in a bid to achieve maximum production.
Rather than using a single CO2-laser to cover the entire build envelope, like in a very standard laser sintering process, LaserProFusion uses up to a million of them which together can output a total of five kilowatts of power. As per the design of the part, only the diode lasers that match the CAD data are activated when building the part, right down to the exact pixel. This process significantly shortens exposure times, regardless of the number of parts and their geometry.
“With the LaserProFusion technology, we are achieving a new level of productivity in polymer industrial 3D printing for serial manufacturing. It is a technology that can be an alternative to injection moulding in many applications, respectively enables tool-free injection moulding,” commented Dr. Tobias Abeln, Chief Technology Officer, EOS. “This will make industrial 3D printing attractive for a completely new market in the future.”
EOS is also introducing its Technology Readiness Levels (TRL) classifications to measure the technological maturity of its polymer and metal processes and materials. Developed by NASA and established in an array of industries, the TRL classification system will help manufacturers to assess 3D printing against other production technologies, and EOS’ 3D printing offering against that of other products and technologies on the market. EOS has divided its material products into two categories. TRL 3-6 refers to Core products, while TRL 7-9 covers Premium products. The latter category is deemed suitable for serial manufacturing. New materials, including a high thermal load endurance aluminium alloy (Premium) and a set of copper materials (Core) will be showcased at Formnext. Also to be presented at Formnext is the EOS M300-4, and its interaction with the company’s software as part of a production cell for industrial metal printing.
EOS is exhibiting in Hall 3.1, Booth G50 between November 13 – November 16 at Formnext, Frankfurt.