Powder bed fusion (PBF) is one of the highest potential production processes of the future.
On the way to an industrial serial production with this technology, the manufacturing world is facing several challenges. One of the most demanding challenges is increasing the productivity of the PBF systems. To increase today’s maximum possible build rates, a systematic investigation and assessment of the effects of different exposure strategies needs to be conducted. The development of different exposure strategies must be based on several physical and economical influence factors. The developed strategies can be then assessed according to evaluation criteria like performance index, build rate, industry suitability and feasibility.
Most system manufacturers overcome the challenge of higher productivity by installing more than one scan unit in their systems, but a build rate growth by multilaser is expensive. To define the optimum number of scan units in a system a cost-benefit analysis can help. In this study, the build rate growth achieved with many scan units installed is compared to the additional costs involved. To maximize laser productivity while maintaining a very high part quality, different multilaser strategies should be utilized depending on the industry and application. Presented here will be scenarios where scanning strategies producing different geometries were evaluated to optimize economics.
- Analyze their powder bed fusion (PBF) application and determine if a PBF system with multiple lasers makes sense.
- Understand the cost-benefit-ratio of PBF systems.