Additive manufacturing is a comparably young production method, in which a component is constructed via layer-by-layer material coating. Originally developed for prototyping, today it is mainly used when geometrically complex components in small batch sizes between 1 and 1,000 are to be produced. Here, additive manufacturing is for the most part more economical than conventional methods.
A promising approach to optimize production processes is the integration of laser beam sources into machine tools. So, Laserline's LDM diode lasers have been, for example, integrated in a five-axis milling machine, where they make a switch between additive and subtractive processing possible: i.e. the laser realizes the powder coating, while the milling head realizes the machining.
Source: HG Laser
The various application possibilities of Laserline's diode lasers in additive manufacturing also offer other options that go far above the interplay between additive powder coating and subtractive machining. For example, the lasers can be integrated into a twelve-axis milling machine and can be used, besides powder cladding, for welding and hardening. For this, besides the laser and powder nozzle, corresponding optics are implemented, between which you can switch back and forth depending on the processing operation. As a result, complex production processes, based on a single beam source, can be realized.