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The Additive Manufacturing Multi-Tool Laser Metal Deposition – Applications from Automotive to Aerospace

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Additive Manufacturing (also AM or 3D printing) is now an accepted form of manufacturing for a range of industrial applications from medical, automotive, consumer products, commercial aviation, and space exploration.

One of these AM processes is Laser Metal Deposition (LMD), also referred to as Directed Energy Deposition (DED) or blown powder DED. It is a multi-tool with many capabilities and special process characteristics. As such 4, if not more, application fields of this technology can be identified and described.

  1. It can be used as simple as a welding process for joining
  2. It is used to precisely tailor material properties of products with the aim of hard facing for
  3. A unique strength of the LMD process is to precisely add material on existing parts, what makes it a strong tool for the third application field, the field of repair and refurbishing of expensive machinery and
  4. The fourth application field, probably the currently most thriving one, is additive manufacturing with the aim of producing components from graze.

The additional use of monitoring tools such as powder-feeder scales, cameras and machine-integrated scanners for process control can improve the process for the user, making it more reliable. Compared to other 3D printing methods, LMD is a strong instrument when it comes to build size, freeform character and build rate.

Learning Objectives:

  • Understand application fields of LMD
  • Define if LMD is applicable for a project they are working
  • Identify benefits of LMD