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3D printing with metals

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1 Author(s)
F. Ribeiro ; Dept. of Ind. Eng., Minho Univ., Portugal

Rapid prototyping is a technique that 'prints' a component, instead of manufacturing it in traditional terms, by using materials ranging from photopolymers to thermoplastics, including paper. Since these materials are in most cases not suitable for assessment purposes a new approach has been created. It has a similar 'build up' technique but uses metal as raw material. The process entails the use of a gas metal arc fusion welding robot which deposits successive layers of metal in such a way that it forms a 3D solid component. This process can also be considered a manufacturing process for low volume production. The technique presented in this article tries to solve the main limitations of traditional rapid prototyping processes and incorporates some new techniques for automating the process and these have proved to be extremely successful.

Published in:

Computing & Control Engineering Journal  (Volume:9 ,  Issue: 1 )