A lot of effort has been put on maximising the resolution and the precision of the Manudirect’s Additive Manufacturing Machines. These are parameters that highly influence the feasibility of micro-components by additive manufacturing and can be achieved by a proper calibration of deposition parameters only if supported by highly accurate hardware performances.
High accuracy of every single track is essential for adequate mechanical properties, and spatial resolution. Especially parts with structure details smaller than 100 μm can be debilitated in toughness by cracks and pores. Beyond that defects in the grain structure take effect on the temperature gradient during cladding and due to that they have influence on grain growth, microstructure and precision.
The minimum producible track width is depending on deposition parameters like laser spot size and power, the additive material characteristics (particle size, melting pool properties). Currently the minimum thickness of cladded tracks is in the range of 30 μm. Admittedly, down scaling the possible spatial
resolution of the direct sintering process is accompanied by increased cost and time efforts for parts production per volume. For this reason a combined set of strategies allows to limit the high precision manufacturing to those parts in which it is necessary for the functionality of the component.
The plus of accuracy and precision of Manudirect’s MLD machines leads to enlarge the range of laser cladding applications and close the gap to conventional technologies.