3D printing processes – additive manufacturing – are becoming increasingly a part of the industrial production chain. Medical technology, aerospace, and automotive industries are leading the innovation and implementation of additive manufacturing.
The greatest challenge lies here in the verification of the 3D-printed parts’ absolute reliability.
ZEISS 3D ManuFACT offers the perfect inspection verification. Using this unique holistic inspection process for 3D manufacturing we apply the concentrated competence of all ZEISS technologies. This integrated process brings the most reliable knowledge and thus certainty about the reliability of 3D parts.
Powder is the building block of additively manufactured parts. Size distribution of individual powder particles influences how the powder is compacted and affects the density of the build and possibility of defects visible later in the process. Light microscopes, scanning electron microscopes and x-ray computed tomography help to define the powder
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Successful build requires various post-processing treatments to ensure dimensional accuracy and optimal material properties. After printing, the part is still attached to the build plate. It is then heat-treated and removed with wire EDM. To better understand the influence of those processes on final quality, a CMM or optical 3D scanner can be used.
The quality of powder and how it is spread during the build process might cause voids or material impurity to form in the structure. Inspecting the quality of the build with light microscopes or internal structures with high-resolution x-ray computed tomography helps to determine process parameters influence and faster define a possible path to achieve optimal settings.
The additive manufacturing process, unlike classic manufacturing methods, requires powders to be melted during the build. Melt temperatures and process parameters greatly affect the crystallographic composition and, as a consequence, part properties.
Dimensional accuracy and surface finish are critical to ensure proper assembly and consistent mating across multiple parts. The surface finish can be analyzed with optical methods, and the internal surface is examined with x-ray computed tomography. Dimensional accuracy of the final part can be validated either with coordinate measuring machines, optical 3D Scanning or with x-ray computed tomography.
Collection and analysis of data across the entire process chain with ZEISS PiWeb provides a deep understanding of how process changes might correlate with different dimensional and material properties. Clear visual representation and correlation of results across all process steps help to quickly and more efficiently develop printing strategies while increasing yield.
- MATERIAL COMPOSITION ANALYSIS
- POWDER ANALYSIS
- POST-BUILD ANALYSIS INCLUDING
- HEAT TREATMENT, PART REMOVAL, AND CLEANING
- METALLOGRAPHIC ANALYSIS
- DEFECT ANALYSIS
- SURFACE METROLOGY – EXTERNAL AND INTERNAL
- DIMENSIONAL METROLOGY – EXTERNAL AND INTERNAL