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Video: Air Heaters Optimize Component Properties In 3D Printing
2023 Author: Hannah Pearcy | [email protected]. Last modified: 2023-05-24 11:12
With additive manufacturing processes, components with complex geometries and internal structures can be quickly manufactured in a system without tool changes or set-up processes. So far, only a few mechanical properties can be introduced in the direction of assembly. In order to optimize the component properties in a targeted manner, employees at the IKV have developed a joining zone temperature control.
This is how the local joining zone temperature control works
Shortly before the current layer is deposited, the previous layer is heated in order to improve the connection of the two layers and thus the tensile strength in the direction of construction. The core element of the joining zone temperature control is an air heater, which heats the air flowing through to up to 650 ° C and thus heats the layer convectively.
It is installed in the institute's hybrid production cell, which consists of a screw extruder and a six-axis robot. The robot takes care of the shaping while the extruder takes care of the plasticization and ejection of the thermoplastic melt. In this way, high mass throughputs and large-volume components can be combined with complex geometries.
When is it worth using 3D printing?
In tensile tests on manufactured test specimens, we have shown that heating the previous layer ensures a higher modulus of elasticity, which can be attributed to the better layer adhesion. If the air temperature rises, this positive effect is further reinforced. The active layer cooling reduces layer adhesion and modulus of elasticity, but has a positive effect on the dimensional stability.
At the IKV, these two positive effects were combined. For this, the previous layer was first heated to improve the layer adhesion. Then the currently discharged and stored plastic was cooled, thus increasing the dimensional stability of the component.