With the goal of supporting the transition of customers towards mass production, machine manufacturer Trumpf has unveiled a new industrial 3D printer.
Named TruPrint 3000 and based on powder-bed-based laser melting, the medium-format machine features diameter of up to 300 millimeters and a height of up to 400 millimeters.
With the ability to process all weldable materials including steels, nickel-based alloys, titanium and aluminium, the 3D printer manufacturer has improved key aspects of the 3D printer :
“We’ve improved key aspects of the TruPrint 3000 to tailor it even more closely to the quality requirements, certifications and production processes of various industries,” says Klaus Parey, managing director of TRUMPF Additive Manufacturing. The new TruPrint 3000 can be equipped with a second laser that almost doubles its productivity. “The multilaser option significantly reduces part costs – that’s how we help our customers make the move into mass production,” says Parey.
With two 500-watt lasers that scan the entire build chamber in parallel, the production speed is dramatically increased and according to the manufacturer, it remains efficient regardless of the number and geometries of the parts.
To ensure an automated control of the multilaser scan fields during the build stage and calibrate them to each other, operators can use an optional automatic multilaser alignment. The manufacturer explains that with each laser scanning a contour, the process does not lead to any kind of weld seams. This is what allows multilaser parts to meet such outstanding quality standards.
Improved inert gas delivering and melt monitoring
Gases can be regarded as the silent enabler in metal additive manufacturing but a build atmosphere, which is not controlled can lead to possible impurities into the materials.
With that in mind, the team at TRUMPF experts has transformed the movement of inert gas through the TruPrint 3000. The company explains in a press communication that the way in which it flows through the machine from back to front is now even steadier and more uniform. As well as boosting the quality of printed parts, this also allows the operator to remove excess powder from the part while it is still inside the machine. Previous models required the operator to take the part out and remove the powder at a separate station. The new machine is designed to process the powder in a shielded environment, using an inert gas to prevent the powder from becoming contaminated during the build. This is a major advantage for sensitive industries such as medical device manufacturing.
As for the melt pool monitoring function, it enables operators to ensure part quality during 3D printing by automatically monitoring melt pool emissions and other metrics during the process. Special sensors in the laser optics continuously monitor the melt pool. A special piece of software compares these readings to the figures for a reference workpiece stored in its database and presents a graphical display of any deviations, such as a melt pool that is too cold or too hot. This gives machine operators the information they need to detect any errors and take whatever action may be necessary.
As well as the solution outlined above for powder removal within the machine, the TruPrint 3000 also offers an exchangeable cylinder principle with external unpacking and depowdering stations. This has several advantages, allowing the machine to better meet the customer’s specific needs, respond to growing production volumes and keep downtime to a minimum by working in parallel with production.
Different industries and components have different requirements, which is why TRUMPF offers such flexible production solutions. “The new TruPrint 3000 lets us tailor the process chain to perfectly match each customer’s manufacturing process,” says Parey.
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