Who says 3D metal printing, said sintering laser (SLS) or electron beam (EBM). ‘Additive Manufacturing’ techniques that enable parts of multiple metal from aluminum, steel to titanium. Reserved for industrial techniques.
However, researchers are working on a new approach to make 3D printing much more accessible metal. A process that uses a simple inkjet printer.
The opposite process to the traditional metal printing
Currently, a 3D printer capable of producing metal parts for industrial an investment of several hundreds of thousands of euros. A heavy investment and implementation for production plants. Only, this could well change if the work of the researchers of the Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering at the University of Southern California are bearing fruit. They are working on a new Additive Manufacturing technology.
Selective-Inhibition-Sintering-(SIS)Called Selective Inhibition Sintering (SIS), process happens laser or electron beam to solidify metal powder.
The objective is to use a printer to piezoelectric head, printer ink jet well known not to print each layer of the room itself but its outline. Printer mounts, layer-by-layer a mould with a product “inhibitory” chemical in the metal powder. It then passes the entire oven where the metal solidifies and inhibitor disappears, releasing the workpiece. Various inhibitors can be used especially depending on the stall or alloy.
The process is still under development by the University of Southern California but its promise is to lower the cost of a spectacular 3D printer. A “Consumer” printer less than €5,000 to print the piece and its mould. The need for a furnace for sintering limited technology industry but, in addition to the cost differential, this SIS process of other benefits, including a narrowing and deformation smaller parts produced by printing SLS reports.
Translation : Bing Translator
“Novel 3D Printing Process Enables Metal Additive Manufacturing for Consumer Market”, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc., publishers, November 6, 2014
“Selective Inhibition Sintering: The Process for Consumer Metal Additive Manufacturing”, Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. 2014