EOS' EOSINT M280
Additive manufacturing has become a big part of Linear Mold & Engineering's business as demand for end-use parts and conformal cooling lines for moulds have grown.
To help meet increased demand, Linear recently installed a new EOSINT M280 laser sintering system – Linear's fifth EOSINT machine – from EOS GmbH, and an SLM 280 Selective Laser Melting system from SLM Solutions GmbH, its first SLM machine.
Linear claims to be the first additive manufacturing service bureau to install an SLM 280. According to President of the company John Tenbusch the Michigan-based firm chose the SLM 280 because of its larger build chamber, which is 280 mm x 280 mm x 350 mm, and its higher laser power, 400/1000 Watts fiber laser.
The SLM 280 also can be used with a new 1 KW fiber laser. A highly efficient protective gas consumption, along with the patented safe filter system and patented new bidirectional loader movement provides optimal process conditions in a high-performance system with consistent build quality.
The SLM 280 is capable of building parts using a wide range of metals including stainless steel, tool steel, cobalt-chromium, super alloys, aluminum and Titanium.
"With Linear's recent expansion and equipment additions, we are becoming a full-service production supplier of aerospace parts using additive manufacturing technology," explained Steve Spaleny, Senior Account Manager.
"Because we are seeing greater demand for more end-use parts, our customers require complete dimensional inspection data to certify the quality of the parts the aerospace companies are buying from us. We must have the capability to provide this inspection data to support the accuracy of our products manufactured using additive manufacturing processes."
Using the DMLS and SLM technologies means that Linear can help the aerospace industry eliminate significant weight, as well as minimise the need for welding, brazing and fasteners.
Not only does additive manufacturing technology reduce weight, but it reduces time, costs and the environmental impact by reducing the number of components being produced singularly, which reduces energy requirements, scrap and packaging to ship the singular parts.
Mr Spaleny noted: "We have the capability to take smaller assemblies of four-to-five parts and grow the entire component, and turn multiple part assemblies into one part."
"The more production parts we do using DMLS, SLM and plastic injection molded parts, the greater our need for higher levels of quality inspection to prove out that accuracy," he added. "The recent addition of a Coordinate Measuring Machine was a natural and critical step toward assuring quality in the continued growth of Linear's production manufacturing."