Designed by engineers of Altair and 3D printed via wire-arc additive manufacturing (AM) by MX3D, a new lightweight stainless-steel industrial robot arm is now serving as a replacement part for an ABB robot. MX3D built the arm in 4 days, yielding a 73-kg part, as compared to the arm’s original weight of 150 kg. The 50-percent weight reduction showcases the ability of design optimization, while the combination of near-net-shape metal printing and conventional machining highlight the rapid lead time and flexibility of wire-arc AM. The team at Altair optimized the arm to improve handling (lower kinetic energy), while improving precision and increasing build rate, using the firm’s Digital Twin Design process, which included performance-requirement identification via kinematic motion simulation of assemblies.
this 5-min. video interview with Roger Smith, CEO and founder of Sierra
Turbines, learn how the company is working to improve the service life
of its products by as much as 40 times and power density by 10 times, by
using metal-AM technology from nTopology and Velo3D to print
fuel-injection rings and other components from Hastelloy X.
Leila Ladani, Ph.D., a professor of Mechanical Engineering and director
of The Polytechnic School at Arizona State University, comes this new
book titled, Additive Manufacturing of Metals: Materials, Processes,
Tests, and Standards. Published by DEStech Publications, Inc., the book
serves as a technical introduction to metal AM, with a focus on
powder-bed fusion (PBF) processes. Included:
Techniques for manufacturing parts using PBF
The physics of the PBF process, including variations between laser and e-beam heat sources
The microstructures of metals and their variations due to PBF processes
Methods for assessing quality and reliability of parts
Standards governing the quality and safety of AM production methods
R&D investment, improved material availability, larger build volumes and more drive the uptick in metal-AM applications.
Teach Engineers to Understand the Business Case … for metal additive manufacturing (AM) to help convince decision makers that investing in the technology will pay off quickly. Building a business case on the foundation of purchase-price variance will put teeth to more familiar concepts such as improved product performance and speed to market.