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EOS, the technology and market leader for design-driven and industrial Additive Manufacturing solutions, expands its metal materials portfolio with EOS StainlessSteel 316L.

This stainless-steel alloy has been optimized specifically for processing on the EOSINT M 280 metal laser-sintering system. It shows a good corrosion resistance and a high ductility. Parts built from EOS StainlessSteel 316L have a chemical composition corresponding to ASTM F138 (“Standard Specification for Wrought 18Cr-14Ni-2.5Mo Stainless Steel Bar and Wire for Surgical Implants UNS S31673”). In the medical industry, this alloy is particularly suited for surgical instruments, endoscopic surgery, orthopedics and implants.

The material is also a good choice for use in the watch and jewelry industries, where the designer benefits from extensive freedom of design. Shaping and structural restrictions as such are a thing of the past. Parts such as watch cases (thanks to defined hollow spaces) can be manufactured more cost-efficiently and easily, saving resources. The material is also well suited for additive manufacturing applications such as spectacle frames or functional elements in yachts. In the aerospace industry, EOS StainlessSteel is a good choice for the manufacture of clamping elements or heat exchangers. Parts manufactured from that material can be mechanically post-processed or polished.    

Founded in 1989 and headquartered in Germany, EOS is the technology and market leader for design-driven, integrated e-Manufacturing solutions for Additive Manufacturing (AM), an industrial 3D printing process. EOS offers a modular solution portfolio including systems, software, materials and material development as well as services (maintenance, training, specific application consulting and support). As an industrial manufacturing process it allows the fast and flexible production of high-end parts based on 3D CAD data at a repeatable industry level of quality. As a disruptive technology it paves the way for a paradigm shift in product design and manufacturing. It accelerates product development, offers freedom of design, optimizes part structures, and enables lattice structures as well as functional integration. As such, it creates significant competitive advantages for its customers.

For more information, visit: www.eos.info

Published in EOS

The TCT Show + Personalize is proud to announce that the CEOs of both Materialise and EOS will be taking to the stage as keynote speakers at the 19th edition of the annual 3D printing, additive manufacturing and product development trade show at the NEC in Birmingham, UK.

With eight months to go until the show opens its doors to the industry, media, professionals, students, prosumers and consumers, the speaker line up is already beginning to take shape, following in the footsteps of the calibre of speakers visitors have enjoyed in previous years.

CEO of Materialise Wilfried (Fried) Vancraen is at the helm of one of the most powerful additive manufacturing service bureaux and communities in the world. Materialise was the first rapid prototyping service bureau to be established in Belgium and is now a brand recognisable throughout the 3D printing, CAD/CAM and design sectors, and beyond. In 2012, TCT Magazine listed Vancraen as one of the publication's Top 20 Most Influential Figures in Additive Manufacturing.

Dr Hans Langer founded EOS 25 years ago and is an expert in laser technology in manufacturing. EOS is at the cutting-edge of metal additive manufacturing and the development of metal powders. Dr Langer will provide valuable insight into this crucial side of the industrial additive manufacturing field, particularly after its partnership with Cookson Precious Metals into the development of a machine specifically designed for jewellery manufacturing with materials including gold and silver, the EOS Precious M 080.

TCT will run for three days this year, from September 30th to October 2nd, and looks set to be even bigger than last year's show which showcased nearly 200 exhibitors and welcomed more than 11,000 visitors from over 50 countries.

James Woodcock, Group Editor and Conference Director, TCT + Personalize, stated: "It is terrific news that we will be hosting such esteemed industry innovators as Fried Vancraen and Hans Langer at this year's TCT. Both 3D printing leaders will have visions and wisdom to impart that will be of value to those at every corner of this burgeoning technology sector. I for one feel that this announcement has set the tone for this year's TCT and is a clear sign that the show is a key date in the industry calendar - and is where the leaders of 3D printing want to be."

More speakers and TCT Show + Personalize 2014 news will be announced in the weeks and months to come, including the full keynote speaker line up and speaker sessions.

For more information, visit: www.tctshow.com

EOS introduced the EOS P 396 production system for the manufacture of plastic parts at this year's Euromold. The successor model to the EOSINT P 395 offers a multiplicity of features that comprehensively meet the growing demand for increased manufacturing efficiency, process stability, and building capacity. The latest CO2-laser generation and a completely revised temperature regulation enable double-digit increases in productivity. Global distribution of the EOS P 396 begins in April 2014.

“With the presentation of the EOS P 396 at Euromold we are sustaining a leading role in plastics-based Additive Manufacturing, a position that stands alongside our metals technology. The EOS P 396 seamlessly supersedes our highly successful EOSINT P 395 model in the mid-frame segment. We have made a number of improvements that allow our customers to produce both plastic prototypes and serial parts with an even higher quality and cost efficiency,” explains Adrian Keppler, Managing Director at EOS.

With the unveiling of the new EOS P 396 the company has introduced a number of improvements. Dependent on the fill level and spectrum of parts, potential increases in manufacturing efficiency of up to 30 percent are possible. A reduction of the secondary processing times is achieved by a number of features, including a new point pyrometer and a low wearing, high speed recoater. Primary processing times are shortened thanks to the introduction of a new and significantly higher performance laser. The energy and material consumption of the system per manufactured component also has been further improved.  This results in a reduction in operations costs and in an optimized product carbon footprint (per part). When the system is viewed in combination with highly economical materials such as PrimePart® PLUS, then combined cost savings of some 30 percent per part are achievable in relation to the system's predecessor.

A newly integrated point pyrometer continually measures the temperature of the powder surface for coating with a high degree of precision. This enables secondary processing times to be further reduced leading to a corresponding increase in productivity. Furthermore, this feature forms the basis for a more stable regulation of the production process, thereby improving process reliability. With the availability of Release 3.7 of the EOS process-software (PSW) at the start of series production, the functional scope is once again expanded, and furthermore the Windows 7 operating system supported. The building capacity of the EOS P 396 is in line with that of its predecessor, at 340 x 340 x 600 mm.

With the introduction of the EOS P 396, the plastic materials PA 2200 and PrimePart® PLUS (PA 2221) will also be commercially available for this system from April 2014. Further materials will follow over several stages, until all of the powders approved for the predecessor system are available.

For more information, visit: www.eos.info/systems_solutions/plastic/systems_equipment/eos_p_396

Published in EOS

EOS is presenting the new EOS M 400 at Euromold 2013. The new modular and extendable system gears additive manufacturing up for application in industrial production environments. The system enables the manufacture of larger components with an increased level of automation. In addition, the EOS M 400 delivers improved quality assurance and is easier to use, thereby answering key requirements of our series production customers. The commercialization of the basic model begins in the spring of 2014, with the global distribution planned from the summer.

“EOS is pursuing a platform-based strategy for the metal technology and is able to support its customers from the research and development phase, through to the series production. The EOS M 400 represents the key to the industrial series utilization of Additive Manufacturing. If the EOSINT M 270 and EOSINT M 280 models have set the technical benchmarks, then the EOS M 400 takes these a step further. The new system supports users not only in the context of its qualification for production, but also in actual manufacturing applications. “We won't be drawing the line at a single solution. We will be expanding the platform with successive performance modules”, says Adrian Keppler, Managing Director at EOS.

The EOS M 400 is based on a modular concept and is initially available with both set-up, and process stations. Within a year, an automated unpacking station will also be on offer. With this extension of the system, an exchangeable frame, including components and residual powder, is moved, following the build process, from the process station to the unpacking station. Here, the job will quickly be cleaned of all loose and excess powder by way of a clean-up program comprising rotation and vibration. The modular concept makes it possible to incorporate the unpacking station retroactively to expand on the set-up and process stations. Users thereby gain a future oriented e-manufacturing solution designed for application-specific, modular extension.

A further key innovation of the EOS M 400 is the volume of the building chamber, which measures 400x400x400 mm so that larger components can now be produced. The first extension to the basic model, with its corresponding processes, will initially be offered with the EOS Aluminum AlSi10Mg and EOS NickelAlloy IN718 materials and is thereby particularly suited for use in the automobile and aerospace sectors. Processes for further materials are still in the development phase, including both tool steel and titanium.

In the EOS M 400 the laser has a performance of up to 1,000 watts. It allows the use of new materials that require more powerful lasers. A new user interface with touchscreen, developed out of talks with many customers, further simplifies the system usability. The complete handling has been optimized. Additionally, the filter from the air filtration system is automatically cleaned and has a significantly longer use-life. EOS has also further optimized both the monitoring and reporting functions, enabling the user to enjoy advancements in quality control. All of these innovations are aimed at meeting the requirements of series production and represent a further important step in making this a reality.

From 2015, EOS is planning to offer in addition to the EOS M 400 the EOS M 400-4 which will come with four lasers. While the single-laser version opens the way for the development of new applications, the focus of the multi-mode variant lies in achieving productivity increases of qualified production processes that have been already achieved for the EOSINT M 280.

For more information, visit: www.eos.info/systems_solutions/metal/systems_equipment/eos_m_400

Published in EOS

EADS Innovation Works (IW), the aerospace and defense group's research and technology organisation, is always on the look-out for new manufacturing methods. A recent target for evaluation was an additive manufacturing process called Direct Metal Laser-Sintering (DMLS).

Developed by EOS, it is being used by EADS IW to manufacture demonstration parts to explore the benefits of optimised design and production sustainability. Protection of the environment is a key driver, while a reduction in the costs of manufacturing and operating its aerospace products also underlies the group’s research.

As quality, costs and environmental effects play a major role in the decision-making process for design and manufacturing solutions, EADS IW has defined new Technology Readiness Level (TRL) criteria focusing on sustainability. Nine TRL processes must be passed at EADS before a technology can be qualified for use in production. For each TRL review, a technology's level of maturity is evaluated in terms of performance, engineering, manufacturing, operational readiness, value and risk. For each of these criteria, new components must out-perform existing ones.

The results from the initial joint study of AM were evaluated in terms of CO2 emissions, energy and raw material efficiency and recycling. When analysing energy consumption, the company's investigation included not only the production phase, but also the sourcing and transportation of raw materials, argon consumption for the atomisation of the DMLS metal powder, and overall waste from atomisation.

An assessment by EADS IW highlighted, amongst other things, the potential cost and sustainability benefits of DMLS during the operational phase in the redesign of Airbus A320 nacelle hinge brackets. The data was backed up by test results from EOS and, in an additional step, by test results from a raw material (powder) supplier.

In the first instance, cast steel nacelle hinge brackets were compared to an additively manufactured (AM) bracket of optimised titanium design by measuring the energy consumption over the whole life cycle. The technology turned out to be a good fit for the design optimisation, as for this application the operational phase is typically 100 times more important than the static phases (e.g. manufacturing the part).

A comparison was made between manufacturing the optimised titanium component by rapid investment casting and on an EOS platform. Energy consumption for the life cycle of the bracket, including raw material manufacture, the production process and the end-of-life phase, is slightly smaller on the EOS platform compared with rapid investment casting. The main advantage of the EOS technology, however, is that the additive process uses only the amount of material for manufacture that is in the product itself. Thus consumption of raw material can be reduced by up to 75 per cent.

The study focused on the comparison between DMLS and rapid investment casting of a single part and did not take into account the question of scalability, which has yet to be addressed. However, some impressive results were documented.

The optimised design of the nacelle hinge bracket allowed EADS and EOS to demonstrate the potential to reduce the weight per aircraft by approximately 10 kg – a significant amount in aviation. CO2 emissions as a result of the brackets were reduced by almost 40 per cent over their life cycle by optimising the design, despite the fact that the EOS technology uses significantly more energy during manufacture.

Jon Meyer at EADS IW said, “DMLS has demonstrated a number of benefits, as it can support design optimisation and enable subsequent manufacture in low volume production.

"In general, the joint study revealed that DMLS has the potential to build light, sustainable parts with due regard to our company’s CO2 footprint.

"A key driver of the study was the integrated and transparent cooperation between customer and supplier, with an open approach that saw an unprecedented level of information sharing.

"The collaboration has set the standard for future studies involving the introduction and adoption of new technologies and processes.

"Even after the first positive results were evident, neither of the parties settled for the outcome, but continued to investigate options for further improvement.”

Part of the project's success was due to continued efforts towards further enhancements, evidenced by the swapping of the EOSINT M 270 DMLS machine for an EOSINT M 280 using titanium instead of steel, which led to additional CO2 savings. The technology has the potential to make future aircraft lighter, leading to savings in resources which help to meet sustainability goals, without compromising on safety.

Jon Meyer, ALM Research Team Leader at EADS IW, added, “We see several advantages in the use of DMLS, mainly concerning freedom of design and ecological aspects.

"We can optimise structures and integrate dedicated functionality, in addition to which DMLS can significantly reduce sites’ CO2 footprints, as our study with EOS demonstrated.

“Furthermore, considering ecology and design together, optimised structures can result in reduced CO2 emissions due to weight reduction. I see tremendous potential in DMLS technology for future aircraft generations, when it comes to both development and manufacturing.”

For more information, visit: www.eos.info or www.eads.com

Published in EOS

EOS is introducing two new plastic materials and one metal material for industrial 3D printing. PrimePart ST (PEBA 2301), a soft, flexible, and elastic material, belongs to the group of thermoplastic elastomers and is available immediately for EOSINT P 395 systems. In the coming months, availability will be extended to the EOS FORMIGA P 110 and EOSINT P 760 systems. PrimePart® FR (PA 2241 FR) is a flame-retardant Polyamide 12 and is available now for both the current EOSINT P 395 and P 760 systems, as well as for the EOSINT P 390 and P 730. EOS NickelAlloy HX is their new heat and corrosion resistant nickel-chrome-iron-molybdenum alloy.

PrimePart® ST: Characteristics and Potential Applications

Possessing an elongation at break of two hundred percent, together with a good elastic restorative capacity and rebound elasticity PrimePart® ST was developed to support the production of flexible, rubber-like parts. The optimized design ensures that parts will return to their original shape, even after significant deformations. Post-production infiltration is not necessary for achieving the excellent mechanical properties and surface qualities. In the temperature range of -40 to 90°C the material demonstrates a very good fatigue performance. If desired, it supports many post-production options for treating the manufactured part, including roto-finishing, flame-treatment, flocking, paint finishing, and smoothing. This facilitates the realization of specialized surface-finishes that meet the specific and varied requirements of customers.

One key sphere of application is in the manufacture of sporting goods: In the production of winter sport accessories, such as impact protectors, the resilience of the material opens up a broad range of possibilities. Another potential application is in the consumer-goods sector, particularly in housings where there exists the risk of breakage through falling, being-dropped, and other instances of impact. Within industry, the automobile sector is one of many potential users: Fitting accessories such as grips, corner/edge, and paintwork protectors can be realized, as are, for example, soft door-lock components. Medical applications would include instrument-grips as well as significant applications in orthopedic technology. In addition, the material is suitable for the manufacture of, for example, hoses, grips and handles, or flexible cable holders and sheaths, across the spectrum if industrial production.

PrimePart® FR for the Aerospace Sector

The new flame-retardant material is especially suitable for application in the aerospace sector. PrimePart® FR (PA 2241 FR) is a flame-retardant Polyamide 12 for processing on the EOSINT P 3xx and P 7xx systems. This replenishable material – the recommendation is to use at least 60 percent new powder - meets the relevant flame-proof requirements at wall thicknesses of just 1.0 mm. The replenishability significantly cuts the costs of part manufacturing. In addition, the material demonstrates improved mechanical properties: A tensile strength of 49 MPa with an elongation at break of fifteen percent. This means that PrimePart® FR exceeds the extremely successful PA 2210 FR, which, until now was the only flame-retardant PA 12 material in the EOS portfolio. Typical applications in the field of airplane interiors would include ventilation ducts and outlet vents.

“With these plastic materials we are reacting to two needs that our customers have brought more and more to our attention - the provision of materials that allow for new applications, while keeping a firm eye on cost-efficiencies. The soft, rubber-like PrimePart® ST has received euphoric feedback from our test-customers, which bodes well for the material's introduction to the market. It's a similar story with PrimePart® FR. The rising cost pressures in the aerospace sector and the increasing demand for light-weight parts mean that PrimePart® FR is ideally suited for meeting today's requirements”, summarizes Fabian Müller, Product Marketing Manager Polymers at EOS.

EOS NickelAlloy HX

EOS is also expanding its portfolio of metal materials with the immediate commercial introduction of EOS NickelAlloy HX. The heat and corrosion resistant nickel-chrome-iron-molybdenum alloy distinguishes itself through a high degree of strength and its resistance to oxidization, even at high temperatures. For this reason it will see frequent application in temperatures up to the region of 1,200ºC. The material is optimized for processing in the EOSINT M 280 metal system, and is typically processed with a layer-thickness of 20 µm.

Christiane Krempl, Product Marketing Manager Metals decribes the potential application for the alloy: “The material is particularly well suited for deployment in applications that are exposed to high thermal forces giving rise to a significant risk of oxidization. Typical areas of deployment that we are seeing include aerospace, for example, with combustion chambers and their components parts. The material is also ideal for use in heating elements, in conveyor ovens, or industrial blast furnaces.”

Andreas Graichen, Product Developer (Gas Turbines) at Siemens Energy adds: “We use EOS' additive manufacturing process for constructing prototypes, for 'rapid manufacturing', and 'rapid repair'. Thanks to this technology we are able to cut repair times and thereby reduce costs for customers commissioning us in the repair of industrial gas turbines. In the construction process we use the Nickel Alloy HX. Its material properties make it ideally suited for repair works, as it is able to withstand the high temperatures to which the gas turbines are constantly exposed. For the repair, the complete burner is brought into the tailor-made EOS-Metal System: We leave the structure intact, remove the outer 20mm, and then simply print a new combustion-head. This process ensures significant savings both in terms of repair times and costs.”

Parts build from EOS NickelAlloy HX can be subsequently heat-treated in order to partially modify the characteristics of the material. Whether hardened or in their original built form, parts can be finished as required, and surplus unexposed material can be re-used.

For more information, visit: www.eos.info/systems_solutions

Published in EOS

EOS will be presenting two new materials at this year's EuroMold in hall 11, booth E148 – PrimePart® PLUS and PA 1101. Peter Klink, EVP Sales at EOS: "With these two new materials, EOS is extending its range of plastic materials clearly towards ecology, technical performance and low manufacturing costs, allowing standard components to be manufactured even more efficiently using laser-sintering."

PrimePart PLUS (PA 2221): high performance combined with cost efficiency

The material PrimePart Plus (PA 2221) represents a breakthrough in polymer development. The material can evidently be refreshed using only a thirty per cent share of new powder, resulting in a powder cycle with minimum scrap quantities. This improves the cost efficiency and sustainability of the laser-sintering process, since conventional laser-sintering materials are usually refreshed using fifty per cent or more new powder. This does not lead to diminished technical performance of the material and the key performance indicators achieved are only slightly lower than those of PA 2200.

PA 1101: new polymer class made of renewing resources  

The PA 1101 material is a natural-colored polyamide 11 which is characterized by high elongation at break and impact resistance with a balanced performance profile. The material is based on renewing resources and can thus be classified positively in environmental terms. On account of its material properties, the material is particularly suitable for applications with functional elements which require high material ductility (e.g. integral hinges) and ones where high impact resistance is important. Another typical application for this material is for components which do not allow chipping (e.g. passenger cell in vehicles). Klink adds: "Our customers expect material solutions that support the ever widening range of applications in the best possible way. With PA 1101 we have been able to significantly extend our portfolio previously dominated by polyamide 12. We are looking forward to new and exciting applications which have not been possible with the materials available so far, or only by adapting the design accordingly."

For more information, visit: www.eos.info/en/products/materials/materials-for-plastic-systems.html

Published in EOS

EOS will be presenting the FORMIGA P 110 - successor model of the established and very successful plastic laser-sintering system FORMIGA P 100 - at this year's EuroMold in hall 11, booth E148. The FORMIGA P 110 continues to be the system of choice in the compact class, offering the flexible, cost-effective and highly productive entry into the world of laser- sintering.

Peter Klink, EVP Sales at EOS, adds: “’FORMIGA-quality' has already become a quality label for the additive manufacturing of plastics. This ongoing development of the P 100 product line will help us to further extend our lead in the compact class." Various EOS parameter sets enable a focus both on economic efficiency and component properties such as surface quality. With short throughput times and comparatively low investment costs, the  FORMIGA P 110 can be integrated perfectly into production environments that require maximum flexibility.

The system is suitable for the economic production of small series and customized products with complex geometries. This makes it ideal for small, sophisticated components used in the medical device industry or for high-value consumer goods, for example. With a build envelope of 200 mm x 250 mm x 330 mm, the system manufactures products made of polyamide or polystyrene directly from CAD data within only a few hours.

Hannes Kuhn, Managing Director of Kuhn-Stoff GmbH and a pilot customer for the FORMIGA P 110: "The additional parameter sets 'Balance 1.0' (120 µm layer thickness) and 'Top Quality 1.0' (60 µm layer thickness) allow an even more detailed and flexible production. The increased build rate rounds off the advantages compared with the FORMIGA P 100."

Innovations for use in production

Numerous technical innovations have been integrated in the FORMIGA P 110, all of which enhance process stability and reproducibility even further. These include the newly designed 4-channel heating and the use of a single-point pyrometer. Least-cost integration in factories that have a central nitrogen supply system is guaranteed by an external nitrogen connection. The established dosing and coating system was retained. The system is extremely user- and maintenance-friendly and requires just a minimum of accessories. Low energy consumption and thus overall costs of operation were other important factors considered in the design process. The FORMIGA P 110 is a door-passing laser-sintering system with low erection requirements. It can be installed and calibrated in less than two days. Since data preparation can conveniently take place at the workstation, the system is also very suitable for decentralized production areas. The high level of automation and ergonomic peripheral equipment of the FORMIGA P 110 also permit comfortable handling and optimum utilization of machine capacity and materials.

For more information, visit: www.eos.info/en/products/systems-equipment/plastic-laser-sintering-systems/formiga-p-110.html

Published in EOS

With the introduction of the Build Processor (BP), Materialise’s Magics and Streamics software now connects to all EOS systems in a machine-specific way, allowing EOS users to get the best out of their machines. By a tighter integration between Materialise and EOS systems, new technical possibilities for true manufacturing solutions are enabled.

Capable of handling large data e.g. for design optimization

The tighter integration between machine and 3D software enables the user to manufacture parts beyond the scope of today’s possibilities. Additive Manufacturing is a great technology to produce complex and freeform shapes. However, the .stl data format was somewhat limiting this applicability. With the new EOS build processor, Materialise software is capable of communicating in slices with the machine thereby enabling the design and the production of complex parts such as 3D patterns, textures and lightweight or optimized structures.

“This new integration strategy between software and hardware brings complex AM technology to a broader range of people and allows professionals greater design freedom and easier interaction between their production software and their machine as they have better access to advanced machine functionalities due to the build processor,” explains Tim Van den Bogaert, Product Manager at Materialise. “The integrated Build Processor enables a user-friendly data preparation process with direct communication between Materialise´s Magics software and the EOS-Laser Sintering system. This improvement is a large step forward in terms of part production directly from 3D-data.” emphasizes Fabian Müller, Product Marketing Manager at EOS GmbH.

Enabling top-end manufacturing

Many technical innovations have helped Additive Manufacturing to evolve from a niche industry to a more mainstream one, making it much more applicable to manufacturing. The new build processor serves as a communication link between Materialise software and EOS systems. It creates a strong connection between Materialise’s AM automation & control system, Streamics and the EOS machines and therefore it is a crucial component for the top-end manufacturing industries such as aviation, orthopedics and many more which need a single, integrated solution that matches their business processes.

Easy upgrades and dedicated

Since the BP Build Processor comes as a dedicated installer, users only need to upgrade if it is really needed taking away the pains of different development cycles at EOS and Materialise. Moreover, Materialise and EOS can bring new technologies easy and fast to the market by an update of the build processor and since the system is dedicated to a selected type of machine it only shows the options and functionality that the user needs.

EOS and Materialise share a mutual vision for the future, which is to take the next step in AM by integrating software solutions and machines, and by laying the foundation for the factory of the future. “We call this an evolution and a revolution,” says Tim. “Bringing this software solution to the market is an evolution for our mutual customers as it encompasses greater functionality but it is a revolution since it enables both companies to work together in integrating more and more benefits to the machine dedicated system. Therefore this is not the end point but the starting point of a revolution in our collaboration with EOS.”

For more information, visit: software.materialise.com

Published in Materialise

EOS is joining forces with Innovative Medical Device Solutions (IMDS), the strategic source for full-service medical device development and manufacturing. Together they offer customers, including industry-leading orthopedic and spine surgeons and implant companies, extensive product development resources for creating novel metal additive manufacturing (AM) designs.

This partnership will allow IMDS to manufacture products with patient-benefiting features that are made possible with the use of AM technology.

“Until now, using AM for medical devices was considered a high-technology novelty done on a few implants, but mainly used to make quick metal prototypes,” says Dan Justin, Chief Technology Officer for IMDS. “However, recent advances—such as increased materials choices, enhanced manufacturing precision, and faster build speeds—have made medical product developers worldwide more willing to co-invest in developing implants made by laser-sintering systems. This partnership marks the most comprehensive resource alignment between contract medical device development and metal additive manufacturing expertise available to our industry.”

EOS offers decades of experience designing and manufacturing laser-sintering systems that can create high-quality prototypes and end-use parts. IMDS specializes in partnering with medical device customers to develop and produce new implant and instrument systems. The company has recently added the latest-generation EOSINT M 280 direct metal laser-sintering (DMLS™) systems to its already industry-leading product development and manufacturing capabilities across the U.S.

In response to requests by major medical product developers, EOS and IMDS have begun investigating partnerships with leading companies to bring out products that could only have been imagined previously.

“Our laser-sintering technology has opened up a door for developers who have formerly focused on subtractive processes,” says Andrew Snow, Regional Sales Director, EOS of North America, Inc. “Instead of being constrained by traditional technology, engineers and medical professionals are now free to explore a world of new designs—perhaps with varied porosity built in, or features nested inside.”

For example, most titanium implants are currently manufactured by subtractive machining, followed by adding a porous coating.  Now, some implants under development are being built one 20-micron layer at a time on high-precision DMLS machines. Each finished product is a functionally gradient single piece that transitions from a precisely shaped porous structure to a less porous, more solid load-bearing structure—a design with significant performance benefits that is not practical to undertake with traditional processes.  Other designs in development include patient-specific surgical guides for placement of pins, saws, and drills.

In the long term, the partnership will also provide orthopedic companies with a more cost-effective design-to-manufacturing pathway for customized implants—for instance, ultra-thin, bone-conserving hip, knee, and shoulder joint bearing implants—digitally designed from patient CT scans. DMLS can build medical products from regulatory approved implant materials such as stainless steel, cobalt-chrome, or titanium alloys.

The two companies will exhibit at the North American Spine Society (NASS) 2012 Annual Meeting (Dallas, Texas, Oct. 24-27), where IMDS will showcase the EOSINT M 280 and laser-sintered display pieces in IMDS booth # 2821. Also on display are parts created with software from WITHIN, an EOS partner and IMDS collaborator, which provides significant design-driven manufacturing capabilities to the overall e-Manufacturing solution.  WITHIN Medical software optimizes the design of innovative lattice structures. www.withinlab.com

For more information, visit: www.imds.net or www.eos.info

Published in EOS

Extraordinary advances in design and manufacturing will be on display at the International Manufacturing Technology Show (IMTS) in booth #S-8754. Machine tool builder GF AgieCharmilles, and market leading provider of design-driven, integrated e-Manufacturing solutions for Additive Manufacturing (AM) EOS will showcase an innovative start-to-finish manufacturing process chain that will create, at the show, actual titanium tibial trays for surgical knee implants.

The manufacturing process starts with an FEA/CAD design, developed using WITHIN Medical software, of a lightweight, yet strong tibial tray. The part’s extremely complex geometry involves variable pore sizes on one side (to promote osseointegration) and a smooth surface on the other (to support loads on the tibia). An EOSINT M 280 direct metal laser-sintering (DMLS™) system will then automatically build the component as a single near-net piece, layer by layer. The final step is surface machining, first on a Mikron HPM 450U 5-axis milling machine, then with a CUT 20P wire EDM machine, both from GF AgieCharmilles.

“This blend of our technologies goes far beyond what most other product developers are presently doing,” says Gisbert Ledvon, Director of Business Development at GF AgieCharmilles U.S. “We have combined the visionary design and manufacturing capabilities of WITHIN and EOS with our long-established production expertise and high-precision equipment. The result is a cutting-edge turnkey manufacturing system that operates with very little human intervention and a minimum of scrap material.”

“While the demonstration at IMTS is of a medical component, this type of process chain is applicable to practically any industry,” says Andrew Snow, Regional Sales Director, EOS of North America, Inc. “A look around the booth shows attendees the range of parts possible for aerospace, automotive, tooling with conformal cooling, consumer, and other sectors as well.”

The GF AgieCharmilles booth is divided into four distinct areas, each one featuring a different industry. Within the medical area, attendees will be walked through the operating GF AgieCharmilles/EOS manufacturing production line and will be able to see each step and each system in action. Technical experts from GF AgieCharmilles and EOS will be available at the booth to answer questions.

Joining them will be Dr. Siavash Mahdavi, CEO of WITHIN. “As a manufacturing process, laser sintering affords designers so much freedom that it’s sometimes hard to know where to begin,” Mahdavi says. “Our software and the partnership between EOS and GF AgieCharmilles point the way to others who wish to explore the benefits that design-driven, additive manufacturing can bring.”

The show takes place Sept. 10-15 at McCormick Place in Chicago. GF AgieCharmilles and EOS will also hold a joint press conference Wednesday, September 12, 2012 at 8 a.m. in Room S-505A at IMTS. AgieCharmilles will be highlighting the 60th year celebration of their long history of manufacturing innovation.

For more information, visit: www.eos.info / us.gfac.com / www.imts.com

Published in EOS

Cookson Precious Metals (CPM) will showcase a prototype of a small Additive Manufacturing (AM) metal system at the Hong Kong Jewellery and Gem Fair 2012, hall 11, stand 11V28. The system, PRECIOUS M 080, is designed around the needs of the international watch and jewellery industry.

Stella Layton, CEO of Cookson Precious Metals states: “For this technology, we have joined forces with EOS, market leader for design-driven, integrated e-manufacturing solutions for Additive Manufacturing (AM) applications. “With this technology, 3D bespoke jewellery and watch components can be created from CAD files. This takes us on an exciting journey permitting the creation of highly complex and intricate designs that weren’t thinkable before. “The particular beauty of Additive Manufacturing is that it can be used to produce both one-off pieces as well as large scale production eliminating many process steps and tooling costs that we see today. “This technology is affordable, compact and provides a trend-setting manufacturing solution to the watch and jewellery industry.”

Just recently, CPM signed a strategic development partnership with EOS. Under this agreement, both companies introduce and further develop precious metal-based applications to the jewellery and watch industry. Product and services offerings will range from the production of precious metal parts to consulting for a Direct Metal Laser-Sintering (DMLS)-driven design process, the development and production of special precious metal alloys and the installation of a bespoke solution chain for high volume jewellery production.

To begin with, CPM offers AM capacities enabling a production of designs made of 18 ct yellow gold (3N colour). Both EOS and CPM envision customized e-manufacturing solutions that will change the economics of making jewellery or watches.

The technology time lowers the general costs of entry into the business of making quality jewellery and watch parts in precious metal. As such, e-manufacturing with DMLS enables designers to produce pieces that do not have to deal with the boundaries of conventional production techniques.

For more information, visit: www.cookson-emanufacturing.com

Published in EOS

Watch the skies: More and more, you’ll see unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) doing both commercial and public work, and a greater percentage of those devices will incorporate components manufactured with technology from EOS.

At booth 3758, EOS will display a variety of innovative laser-sintered aerospace parts, some of them difficult or even impossible to manufacture any other way. Around the corner at booth 3450, Northwest UAV Propulsion Systems and its sister company, Northwest Rapid Manufacturing, will be running a FORMIGA P 100 plastic laser-sintering system from EOS.

“Laser sintering provides a competitive business advantage that is helping us find new customers,” says Alexander Graham Dick, VP Operations and Technical Sales Manager of Northwest Rapid. “It offers high quality, rapid turnaround and the ability to create efficient, integrated components.” One example is the company’s generator set, which made use of their EOS plastic laser-sintering system. The set, which consists of a combustion engine that drives an electrical generator, increases fuel capacity through a plastic tank design that takes maximum advantage of available space and incorporates the fuel tank and its enclosure in one part.

Noted aerospace and defense analysts Teal Group observed in a recent market study that UAV spending is set to nearly double worldwide over the next decade, from $6.6 billion to $11.4 billion per year. Others predict that a sizable segment of this expansion will be civilian applications.

“Nearly every day someone recognizes a new use for UAVs for which the vehicle or payload needs to be adapted,” says Udo Behrendt, EOS’ Global Business Development Manager, Aerospace. “That means re-thinking designs and quickly remaking components—which is where the manufacturing capabilities of laser sintering are invaluable.”

UAV manufacturers can benefit from laser sintering in many ways. The plastic or metal materials are strong and durable. Lightweight parts can be built with complex shapes. Laser sintering enables instant customization and re-design without tooling, making it inexpensive to re-purpose an existing UAV from one mission to another. The technology has been used to make fuel tanks, engine housings, cowlings, nacelles, ducts, and even entire fuselages.

AUVSI’s Unmanned Systems North America 2012 will be held August 7-9, in Las Vegas, Nevada.

For more information, visit: www.auvsishow.org

Published in EOS

EOS, technology and market leader for design-driven, integrated e-manufacturing solutions for Additive Manufacturing (AM) applications, and Cookson Precious Metals (CPM), worldwide established supplier for the precious metal industry, signed a strategic development partnership. Under this agreement, both companies will introduce and further develop precious metal-based applications to the jewelry and watch industry. The product and services offering will range from the production of precious metal parts to consulting for a Direct Metal Laser-Sintering- (DMLS) driven design process, the development and production of special precious metal alloys and the installation of a bespoke solution chain for high-volume jewelry production. To start with, CPM offers AM capacities enabling production of designs made of 18 carat yellow gold (3N color).

As a leading supplier of fabricated precious metals – primarily gold, silver and platinum – Cookson Precious Metals has a reputation for high-quality products and services, as well as for developing a close working relationship with customers. CPM is able to supply fair-trade gold, and their own Ecogold guarantees to customers that the gold has come from a recycled source. This utilizes aboveground stocks of recycled gold instead of new metal from the mines. Moreover, CPM is UK's largest one-stop shop for the jewelry maker with over 12,000 products, including a substantial stock of silver, gold, palladium and platinum bullion cut to customer requirements (sheet, wire, tube, solder, grain, settings) as well as wide ranges of findings, loose and finished chain, gemstones, ring blanks, jewelry making tools, silver clay and beading materials.

Dr. Adrian Keppler, Executive Vice President Strategy and Business Development at EOS, states: “With CPM we found a perfect partner to introduce our innovative and paradigm-shifting technology to the luxury goods industry. We truly believe that our AM process offers a huge potential for these industries and a freedom of design that they have long been searching for. The most demanding jewelry brands can now create entirely new products and geometries that still meet their high-quality requirements. The technology challenges the designer’s imagination and pushes it to the next level. This could not be achieved with a goldsmith’s handicraft work or conventional manufacturing methods.”

Stella Layton, Global Vice President at Cookson Precious Metals adds: “With EOS, we now join forces with the market and quality leader in AM. With the EOS technology, 3D bespoke jewelry and watch components can be created from CAD files. This takes us on an exciting journey, permitting the creation of highly complex and intricate designs that weren’t thinkable before. The particular beauty of this technology is that it can be used to produce both one-off pieces as well as large scale production eliminating many process steps and tooling costs we see today.”

Both EOS and CPM envision customized e-manufacturing solutions that will change the economics of making jewelry or watches. The shorter technology time lowers the general costs of entry into the business of making quality jewelry and watch parts in precious metal. As such, e-manufacturing with DMLS enables designers to produce pieces that do not have to deal with the boundaries of conventional production techniques.

Cookson Precious Metals (CPM) is a leading supplier of fabricated precious metals in Europe, a supplier of gold, silver, platinum and palladium alloys, wire, sheet, tubing, coin blanks and casting grain. Cookson is also a major precious metals refiner with London Bullion Market Association good delivery status.

For more information, visit: www.cookson-emanufacturing.com

Published in EOS

World-renowned dental implant specialist, Andrew Dawood, bought an EOS plastic laser-sintering machine in 2009 for his Wimpole Street company, Cavendish Imaging, so that data from CT (computerised tomography) scans could be used to make anatomical replicas of a patient's jaw and teeth. The purpose was to be able to plan and carry out complex dental procedures such as zygomatic implant placement more efficiently and accurately.

After the needs of his own dental practice and those of others locally had been met, the service was extended to assist other medical professionals. A recent, high profile job was the production of surgical planning models from MRI scans taken of shared blood vessels within the skulls of Sudanese baby twin girls, Ritag and Rital Gaboura, who were conjoined at the head. Last September (2011), doctors at Great Ormond Street Hospital separated the girls and they survived against incredible odds.

There was still spare capacity on the EOS FORMIGA P100 laser-sintering machine, which automatically builds finely detailed models from successive 100-micron layers of fine, white nylon powder in a process sometimes referred to as 3D printing. So Mr Dawood decided to start another firm, Digits2Widgets, to offer a similar service to designers, initially mainly in the conceptual arts and architecture.

The enterprise has seen the machine produce a wide variety of prototypes and finished products. Work includes helping with customisation of dolls' faces, and 3D scanning, digital modification and small production runs of items such as innovative jewellery and spectacle frames, either directly in plastic or in metal via lost wax models.

Another project involved the limited production of plastic 'clones' – modified pine cones containing a light – that appeared in the list of best Christmas tree decorations 2011 published by The Guardian newspaper.

The area of London around Wimpole Street is at the epicentre of world renowned schools of Architecture, such as the Architectural Association, Westminster University, The Royal College of Art and the UCL Bartlett School of Architecture. The latter also operates a FORMIGA P100 as well as a larger plastic laser-sintering machine from EOS. Mr Dawood therefore took the logical decision to employ a qualified architect to help expand the design side of his business.

That person is Jonathan Rowley, BArch, DipArch, ARB, who joined Digits2Widgets in August 2011 and has since been responsible for producing several scale models of buildings in multiple sections for architectural practices and students.

He commented, "The big advantage of laser-sintering as a 3D printing method is that the parts produced are robust and fully functional, unlike with some other additive manufacturing methods.

"Once the 3D model has been sliced horizontally and the data downloaded to the FORMIGA control, the build process continues automatically around the clock, layer by layer, until the process is complete. You then simply lift out the hopper, allow it to cool and extract the components, dusting off the powder residue.

"Different parts can be fitted together in our CAD (computer aided design) system and produced simultaneously within the machine's 200 mm x 250 mm x 330 mm build volume in one cycle, so productivity is high, allowing us to keep down costs.

"We still have spare capacity on the machine to offer to firms in the London area, nationwide or even internationally, and may well invest in another, larger EOS 3D printer as business increases."

For more information, visit: www.digits2widgets.com or www.eos.info

Published in EOS

Inventor Dean Kamen is coming to Atlanta May 22nd. And he’s bringing the future with him. The celebrated founder of DEKA Research and Development Corporation will address the North American User Day (NAUD) meeting held by EOS, the world leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. His talk is titled “Growing Innovation and FIRST Innovators.”

DEKA has used direct metal laser sintering (DMLS) in the development of a futuristic prosthetic arm, among other devices. FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) is Kamen’s initiative to motivate young people to become science and technology leaders.

“It’s inspiring to see the innovative uses that young minds can make of everyday manufacturing processes,” Kamen says. “What they can achieve with a breakthrough additive process like laser sintering is beyond imagining.”

“EOS has been honored to work with Dean and his company on metal laser-sintered parts for the Luke prosthetic arm prototype,” says Dr. Hans J. Langer, founder and CEO of EOS. “We look forward to seeing what he and DEKA will design to take advantage of their plastic systems.” DEKA now has EOS FORMIGA P 100 and EOSINT P 395 plastic laser-sintering solutions, which it uses for prototyping, fixtures, and manufacturing.

NAUD coincides with RAPID 2012 (May 22-25), an SME-sponsored show in the same Atlanta venue. EOS will exhibit at RAPID in booth #109, where they will demonstrate an operating FORMIGA P 100 and display plastic and metal laser-sintered products from many industries. Dr. Siavash Mahdavi, managing director of WITHIN Technologies Ltd., will be a guest at the booth and speak at NAUD. WITHIN’s FEA/CAD optimization software works with plastic and metal laser-sintering systems to create strong, lightweight parts, including novel, load-bearing lattice structures.

Dean Kamen’s May 22nd talk is scheduled for 4:30 p.m. in the International South Meeting Room of the Hyatt Regency and is open to EOS users and registered press. There will also be a live musical performance during NAUD on a laser-sintered violin created in a single piece from PEEK thermoplastic.

A prolific inventor, Dean Kamen holds more than 440 U.S. and foreign patents in areas ranging from medicine and energy to robotics and transportation. He is widely known as the inventor of the Segway personal transporter. His many awards include a National Medal of Technology (2000), the Lemelson MIT Prize for Invention and Innovation (2002), induction into The National Inventors Hall of Fame (2005), the American Society of Manufacturing Engineers Medal (2007), and honorary degrees from more than 25 colleges and universities. Kamen founded the nonprofit FIRST (For Inspiration and Recognition of Science and Technology) in 1989 to challenge and encourage students in engineering and technology.

Founded in 1989 and headquartered in Germany, EOS is the technology and market leader for design-driven, integrated e-Manufacturing Solutions. The modular EOS solution portfolio comprises of systems, application know-how, software, process parameters, materials and material development. EOS supports their customers with a variety of services, maintenance, application consulting and training offerings. The Additive Manufacturing (AM) process allows the fast and flexible production of high-end parts at a repeatable industry level of quality. As a disruptive technology it paves the way for a paradigm shift in product design and manufacturing. The technology accelerates product development, allows for freedom of design, optimized structural layouts – enabling e.g. lightweight lattice structures - and functional integration of parts, thus creating significant competitive advantages for their customers.

For more information, visit: www.eos.info or www.sme.org/rapid

Published in EOS

EOS, the worldwide leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems, today announced that it has filed a patent infringement lawsuit against Phenix Systems at the United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois, Eastern Division. The lawsuit alleges infringement of U.S. Patent Nos. 5,753,274 and 6,042,774 through the manufacture, sale and use of the PXL, PXM, PXS and PXS Dental product lines from Phenix in the US. During the second half of 2011, Phenix had announced the commercial manufacture, sale and use of exactly these product lines publicly, even though EOS had apprised Phenix of its patent portfolio several times. As a consequence, EOS filed the patent lawsuit against Phenix on March 5, 2012.

The Complaint against Phenix sets forth that Phenix is directly infringing, inducing others to infringe, and contributing to infringement of the 274 and 774 Patents in violation of 35 U.S.C. § 271. Phenix had actual notice of the existing EOS patent and despite such notice, has continued to engage in acts of infringement.

Johann Oberhofer, CFO of EOS, comments: “Filing this patent infringement lawsuit is an essential step in protecting our patent rights in the US. We hope that this litigation will quickly resolve the situation.”

EOS has patents granted for a considerable number of its own inventions in the field of laser-sintering. Today, the EOS patent portfolio includes more than 50 patent families worldwide. The company owns exclusive worldwide rights to all patents owned by 3D Systems Corporation applicable to the field of laser sintering which were filed prior to August 20, 2002.

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost-effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser sintering accelerates product development and optimizes production processes.

For more information, visit: www.eos.info

Published in EOS

There’s a new Industrial Revolution sweeping through dentistry, and the results speak for themselves at LAB DAY 2012 Chicago. Laser-sintered crowns, bridges, and copings—now produced in the millions—are increasingly replacing those made with traditional casting and machining. EOS, world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering equipment, will display these innovative products and conduct two accredited clinics at the event (held at the Sheraton Chicago Hotel & Towers February 24-25).

“Anyone can see that digital tools are proliferating in dentistry and being used in place of physical impressions and casting,” says Martin Bullemer, EOS manager for medical business development. “Our systems take full advantage of the individual patient geometries those digital tools capture and offer consistently high end-quality products and benefits in costs and turn-around times.”

Bill Oremus, vice president of BEGO USA (Lincoln, R.I.), agrees. “The industry’s shift to scanned digital imaging and manufacturing has made laser sintering a must-have technology for us,” he says. “As the technology advances it will be the direction of the future for making dental implant components because it eliminates production steps and cuts material waste.”

Laser sintering is an additive manufacturing process that “grows” near-net shapes, doing away with costly and time-consuming tasks such as waxing, investing, divesting, cutting, and grinding. This makes it economical for creating mass-customized crowns and bridges as well as plastic dental models or titanium dental implants. There are currently more than 40 plastic and metal laser-sintering systems worldwide dedicated to dental devices. Direct metal laser-sintering (DMLS) equipment, running unattended, can produce about 450 crown and bridge units in 24 hours, currently some 2.5 million per year.

BEGO USA uses DMLS to create individual cobalt-chrome copings, crowns, pontics and bridges—including 14-unit bridges with a precision that would be difficult to match by traditional methods.

For those who wish to learn more about how this technology benefits the dental industry, this year’s clinics by EOS are titled, “Producing Bridges, Copings, Partials, Implants and Models from CAD Data via Laser Sintering.” Thomas Thiel, an EOS engineer in dental applications and a Master Dental Technologist, will show attendees why DMLS is an efficient alternative to traditional casting processes for copings, bridges, and implants. He will also highlight the use of laser-sintered plastic models for quality checks, analysis, and post-processing restorations. Participants will receive 1.5 Scientific Certified Dental Technician Credits. The clinics will be held in Parlor F (Lobby Level) on Saturday, February 25 from 1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m., and again from 3:30 p.m. to 5 p.m.

EOS will also be demonstrating its newest polyamide, PA 2105, for physically modeling dentition. The material offers high precision for best prosthesis fit. Its color contrast facilitates the veneering of dental prostheses, and the models require minimal manual processes or finishing procedures.

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost-effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser sintering accelerates product development and optimizes production processes.

For more information, visit: www.eos.info

Published in EOS

FourFourSixSix, a London-based international architecture practice, is delighted to be named key sponsors of the world’s biggest egg hunt. On February 21st, when the UK’s capital becomes home to 200 giant and uniquely crafted Easter eggs, FourFourSixSix sponsors an egg which has been created by them based on an architectural concept and manufactured with an additive manufacturing process called laser-sintering provided by EOS.

The first event of its kind, ‘The Fabergé Big Egg Hunt’ aims to raise vital funds for charities Action for Children and Elephant Family, inviting tourists, locals and visitors to join in a truly magical experience.

Members of the public will be able to hunt down the strategically placed, giant eggs, which have been exclusively designed, bejewelled and decorated by some of the world’s leading artists, architects, jewellers and designers including Mulberry, Sir Ridley Scott, Zandra Rhodes, Diane Von Furstenberg, Marc Quinn, Bruce Oldfield, The Chapman Brothers, Theo Fennell, William Curley, Bompas and Parr and Polly Morgan.

In addition, participants in the The Fabergé Big Egg Hunt will have the chance of winning the world’s most extraordinary prize. The Fabergé Tribute Egg, a fabulous creation valued at over £100,000, will be exclusively revealed on the first day of the hunt, Tuesday 21 February.

The event is set to smash Guinness World Records for the most participants in an Easter egg hunt and the world’s most expensive chocolate egg, as designed by William Curley.

The handcrafted eggs, which are destined to become highly collectible works of art, will be available to buy at auction, with proceeds going to Action for Children and Elephant Family. The jewel in the crown of the auction will be an exclusively designed, stunning 127ct emerald and gold egg pendant ‘Le Collier Plume d’Or’ by Fabergé.

‘The Fabergé Big Egg Hunt’ seeks to raise up to £2 million for leading children’s charity, Action for Children, and Elephant Family – the UK’s biggest funder for the endangered Asian elephant.

Daniel Welham, of FourFourSixSix and Stuart Jackson, Regional Manager for the UK and Ireland at EOS agree: “We are absolutely delighted to announce our support for this fantastic event. Not only will it be a magical day out for thousands of children and families this Easter, but it will be raising money for two incredible charities, Action for Children and Elephant family.“

Action for Children’s Chief Executive, Dame Clare Tickell, said: “The Fabergé Big Egg Hunt is a ground-breaking and exciting way to get London and all its visitors involved in raising awareness and crucial funds for the most vulnerable and neglected children, young people and families across the UK. It is an enchanting event, which will capture the hearts, imagination and interest of everyone taking part.

“We act as a lifeline to some of the UK’s most vulnerable children, young people and families and the £1 million we stand to benefit from this event will make a huge difference to the people out there that need our help the most. It’s particularly heartening to know that the money will have been raised thanks to an event which will be hugely enjoyable for the thousands of children and families who will be taking part.”

Elephant Family Director, Ruth Powys, said: “From the charity that brought you Elephant Parade, we give you, in partnership with Action for Children, The Fabergé Big Egg Hunt. It’s about time to have some fun again. Forget about your worries – we’re going to put a smile on your faces and brighten up our great capital city. Like everybody, charities are up against it and you need to think out of the box, so welcome to another fun and vital initiative to protect our children and the endangered animals that share their world”.

Sarah Fabergé, great granddaughter Peter Carl Fabergé said: "Eggs have become synonymous with Fabergé and it is almost impossible to think of one without the other! The egg is symbolic to so many nations and cultures representing new life and rebirth. We at Fabergé have recently undergone a rebirth ourselves opening our first boutique in London after an absence of more than 90 years! How could we not become involved in a big egg hunt taking place right on our doorstep in support of these two wonderful charities, Action for Children and Elephant Family whose tireless work involves nurturing young people and the animals that share our planet?”

For more information, visit: www.thebigegghunt.co.uk

Published in EOS

EOS, world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems announced today that Spain-based Fundación Prodintec joined their e-Manufacturing partner initiative as of January 1, 2012. Complementing the existing network of partners both companies join forces to further increase the acceptance of the laser-sintering as a manufacturing process that offers solutions beyond prototyping, thus extending the reach to serial applications too.

Together with EOS, Prodintec offers an e-Manufacturing process from Product Design to Advanced Manufacturing Processes. Owning a number of EOS systems already – one FORMIGA, one EOSINT P 395 and two EOSINT M 280 (200 and 400 Watt) Prodintec has a substantial knowledge of the laser-sintering technology and as such can circle back to EOS valuable lessons learned which  consequently can ensure a continuous further improvement of the e-Manufacturing process. Prodintec, in return, sees EOS as their preferred supplier for laser-sintering systems and processes. Dr. Adrian Keppler, Executive Vice President Strategy und Business Development adds: “EOS and Prodintec believe that laser-sintering is currently challenging the principles of conventional design and manufacturing processes for a large variety of industry-specific applications. This partner network is a proof point for the innovative and game changing power of the technology and will help all parties involved to tap the full potential of e-Manufacturing.”

Iñigo Felgueroso, Managing Director of Prodintec adds: “We are not just sharing a vision with EOS but have build up successful business models around the technology, gained practical experiences from this and consequently can perfectly consult customers on how to reach maximum benefit from e-Manufacturing with laser-sintering. With a regional focus, though acting international, Prodintec aims to become a reference for the EOS technology when it comes to R&D in product development and manufacturing processes. Moreover, we are successful as a company when this technology helps particularly companies in Spain, Portugal and other countries to grow their businesses.”

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost-effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser sintering accelerates product development and optimizes production processes.

Founded in 2004, PRODINTEC is a non-profit technology centre based in the North of Spain. Main activities include R&D and innovation projects related to Advanced Manufacturing Technologies, Product Design and Product Engineering. PRODINTEC is specialised on supporting companies in the whole value chain for Additive Manufacturing, providing complete innovative solutions from 3D-scanning, to series production including the use of advanced software for Additive Manufacturing, quality control and post-processing. Those capabilities have made of PRODINTEC the leader in Spain in R&D projects and innovation services in Additive Manufacturing, performing more than 2.000 innovation services and 30 R&D projects in Additive Manufacturing in several sectors and applications, such as electronic equipment enclosures, medical implants, aerospace, automotive parts and conformal cooling moulds and micro-moulds.

For more information, visit: www.eos.info or www.prodintec.com

Published in EOS

Paramount Industries, Inc., a world-class rapid product development, rapid manufacturing and rapid deployment company, today announced the acquisition of an EOSINT P 800, a new high temperature laser sintering technology capable of processing engineered polymers like polyaryl ether ketone (PAEK) and polyether ether ketone (PEEK).

“High temperature laser sintering is a 3D printing process that is growing in popularity for making strong plastic production parts,” said Paramount CEO Jim Williams. “As early adopters, our goal is to integrate this technology across all industries so manufacturers can benefit from the unique advantages additive manufacturing technologies can offer. While it is true that aerospace, defense, energy, medical and transportation are natural consumers, there are many more industries that will benefit from this processing and material technology.”

An increasing number of government agencies and manufacturers are sourcing laser sintering for direct part production. In contrast to traditional manufacturing methods, laser sintering can deliver plastic parts with highly complex geometries with impressive strength-to-weight ratios. In many cases, hundreds of parts can be directly manufactured from 3D CAD digital models long before tooling is available and in certain applications eliminating tooling costs altogether. As original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) continue to make system enhancements and service providers develop new processing techniques for biocompatible and high temp laser sintering materials, Paramount anticipates that demand will continue to rise.

The EOSINT P 800 can process temperatures up to 385°C (725°F) which enables the laser sintering process of engineered polymers like PAEK. “The P 800’s elevated processing temperatures and range of high performance engineered polymers are critical components necessary for the growth of this industry and complementary to our ongoing laser sintering R&D effort and direct part manufacturing operations,” said Williams.

Laser sintering offers the highest levels of manufacturing flexibility for end-use parts. PAEKs offer the highest levels of performance among polymers. Since 2008 Paramount Industries has led the development of the high temperature laser sintering process. The company qualified the process through an extensive U.S. Air Force Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) R&D effort integrating laser sintering technology and materials science into a robust manufacturing solution package to deliver complex parts for military weapon systems. Paramount is successfully moving into SBIR Phase III, transitioning this high temperature laser sintering process to production with these new PAEKs and carbon-fiber-reinforced PAEKs.

The laser sintering PAEKs offer temperature resistance, processing stability, mechanical performance, resistance to hydrolysis, and flame retardant characteristics that make them ideal candidates for aerospace applications. The carbon-fiber-reinforced PAEKs offer additional electrostatic dissipative characteristics and higher tensile modulus. These new materials combined with Paramount’s advanced coatings and surface finishes broaden the material selection and design options and increases the range of applications.

For over 45 years Paramount has demonstrated a strong commitment to the early adoption of new manufacturing technologies and since the late ‘80s was a thought leader in the democratization of rapid technologies. In the mid ’90s, Paramount was an early adopter of laser sintering metals for the manufacture of injection molds and metal sintered parts. These early efforts were foundational in helping to elevate awareness and integration of advanced additive manufacturing technologies.

“Much of the excitement in what we do every day as a product development and manufacturing company is to create innovative ways to integrate advanced technologies that enable our customers’ rapid product deployment regardless of the industry. Paramount continues to advance the development of laser sintering materials and processing. My team is absolutely thrilled to add the EOSINT P 800 to Paramount’s additive manufacturing tool box,” Williams added.

Founded in 1966, Paramount Industries, Inc. is among the world's most experienced providers of product development services, including design engineering, additive manufacturing, rapid prototyping, direct digital manufacturing, rapid manufacturing, rapid tooling, urethane casting, injection molding and contract manufacturing. Paramount is AS9100C and ISO 9001:2008 certified and International Traffic in Arms Regulations (ITAR) registered. The company holds active memberships with the Additive Manufacturing Users Group (AMUG), Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI), Keystone Chapter AUVSI (founding member), Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) and ASTM International.

For more information, visit: www.paramountind.com

Published in Paramount Industries

For proof positive that laser-sintering is changing the face of medical design and manufacturing, attendees of this year’s American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons (AAOS) meeting can stop by the EOS booth. The world leader in laser-sintering systems is showcasing a working EOSINT M 280 direct metal laser-sintering (DMLS) system to demonstrate the extraordinary benefits the technology offers for orthopedic applications. The evidence includes a wide range of innovative medical products and prototypes used for instrumentation as well as spinal, joint, and cranial surgeries. The show is being held February 8-10 at the Moscone Center in San Francisco (California).

“An entire new world of orthopedic treatment and procedures has opened up,” says Martin Bullemer, EOS manager for medical business development. “Because our laser-sintering systems can cost-effectively manufacture any imaginable geometry, and any variation on it, they are changing the way we think about medical products.”

Laser sintering is an additive manufacturing process involving next-to-no tooling, molding or machining costs. As a result, devices can be economically mass-customized to conform to the requirements of individual doctors or patients. Orthopedic suppliers use DMLS and plastics laser sintering to create a diverse array of drill guides, clamps, implants, and surgical instruments.

EOS-related activities at the AAOS meeting include:

• EOS customers C&A Tool (booth 4017), Morris Technologies (booth 359), and Oxford Performance Materials (booth 2821) are exhibiting laser-sintered products and prototypes. C&A and Morris both focus on DMLS, while Oxford Performance Materials uses the EOSINT P 800 with high-performance polymers to manufacture customized medical implants.

• Highlights from WITHIN Technologies Ltd include their FEA/CAD optimization software that works with EOS’ plastic and metal laser-sintering systems to create strong, lightweight parts including innovative lattice structures.

• FHC is exhibiting its new line of patient-customized stereotactic fixtures for cranial targeting. The new fixtures are more accurate and comfortable for the patient than standard stereotactic frames and are suitable for a broad range of head types, and for targets not easily reached with a traditional frame. They also reduce operating room times for the procedure by as much as two hours.

“Many surgeons and medical designers are only just now becoming aware of the breadth of applications made possible by this manufacturing technology,” says Fred Haer, CEO of FHC. “The laser-sintered products on display at this meeting are at the forefront of a revolution in personalized patient care.”

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost-effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser sintering accelerates product development and optimizes production processes.

For more information, visit: www.eos.info or www.aaos.org/education/anmeet/anmeet.asp

Published in EOS

German industrial control and automation company, Festo, a world leading supplier of pneumatically- and electrically-actuated automation systems, is using additive manufacturing (AM) to produce a bionic gripper that can pick up and put down objects flexibly, reliably, gently and safely. Fast and economical batch production of the complex components at the company's Esslingen factory is achieved using a FORMIGA P 100 plastic laser-sintering machine from EOS.

The advantages over conventional manufacturing practices are many. Due to the design freedom afforded by layer-by-layer AM, the number of individual parts has been reduced, making assembly less costly. As injection mould tools are not needed, further time and cost savings result. The weight of the gripper is lower, as it can be made from polyamide instead of metal, which is an advantage in some applications.

The so-called Bionic Handling Assistant was awarded the 2010 Deutscher Zukunftspreis, a technology and innovation award endowed annually by the German Federal President. Unlike conventional industrial robots, the pneumatically controlled unit has the particular benefit that direct contact with people is not hazardous, as in the event of a collision the system yields immediately. The design allows for smooth movement, with 11 degrees of freedom and an unparalleled weight / payload ratio.

Festo has been gathering experience with AM since 1995. What began with concept models and functional prototypes has developed into the manufacture of several thousands of parts per year.

Products derived from nature are often of complex design. The flexible bionic handling assistance system is based on an elephant's trunk and consists of three elements for spatial movement. At the end is a 'hand', called a DHDG adaptive gripper, modelled on a fish fin.

Klaus Müller-Lohmeier, head of advanced prototyping technology at Festo AG, said, "The gripper's functionality and structure, incorporating components of complex geometry, makes it impossible to produce the product by any means other than AM.

"Just four components produced in a FORMIGA P100 are sufficient to make a complete Bionic Handling Assistant.

"Thanks to the design freedom that laser-sintering gives us, we can manufacture movable, flexible but also specifically rigid shapes, just as they occur in nature.

"Our designers can operate independently of the restrictions of conventional manufacturing techniques and concentrate fully on the implementation of the natural principles they have analysed.

"We are using laser-sintering more and more for projects in which limited annual quantities of a complex part are required. In these cases, the process is a real alternative to existing, often tool-based methods."

The fish fin-inspired DHDG adaptive gripper is now integrated into Festo's product range and is already used by customers all over the world. Its structure may be adapted for a user's specific application. The gripper fingers adjust precisely to the contour of a workpiece and even sensitive objects or those of complex shape can be gripped and moved safely.

Noteworthy is that the gripper elements have their final functionality immediately after laser-sintering, without the need for expensive assembly. Accordingly, laser-sintering is a manufacturing precondition. Festo says that there is no practical alternative.

Moreover, the DHDG adaptive gripper is 80 per cent lighter than conventional grippers made of metal. The fact that plastic is able to replace metal is due to the ability of the laser-sintering process to produce lightweight, elastic yet very strong structures. Studies have shown that the gripper elements can withstand more than five million bending cycles.

Müller-Lohmeier concluded by mentioning that tool-less production with AM is especially cost-efficient. In an unrelated customer project, Festo manufactured 12,000 components by laser-sintering as an alternative technology, saving 40 per cent of the unit cost compared with injection moulding.

All parts were finished within one week in just four build cycles, whereas conventional production would have taken two months. The company was therefore able to launch the product much faster.

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world's leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser-sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser-sintering accelerates product development and optimises production processes. EOS completed its business year 2009/2010 with revenues of 64 million Euros. The company employs 300 people worldwide, 250 of them in Krailling near Munich, Germany.

For more information, visit: www.eos.info or www.festo.com



Published in EOS

At this year’s EuroMold World Fair for Moldmaking and Tooling, EOS highlighted integrated e-Manufacturing solutions that meet the need for quality assurance in series manufacture of customised products.

The company announced that its Integrated Process Chain Management for plastic applications is being developed further to optimise powder handling. The new IPCM will be scalable to fit into production environments where management of powder quality, traceability and storage is essential. EOS is working closely with selected customers and their input is being integrated in the further development of this concept.

The latest direct metal laser sintering system was exhibited, EOSINT M 280, of which over 30 systems have been sold globally since it was introduced at EuroMold 2010. EOSINT P 760 for plastic applications also featured on the stand.

Emphasis was placed on Laser Power Monitoring, which records the laser power during the build process to ensure that the specified level is maintained. Results are reported via the EOSTATE 1.2 quality assurance module.

New plastic powder

Designed to make plastic laser-sintering more economical and sustainable, PrimePart PLUS is a new, translucent polyamide suitable for fully functional parts with excellent mechanical properties.

Owing to the optimised refresh rate, whereby only about 30 per cent virgin powder has to be added to used material, instead of 50 per cent for conventional polyamide polymers, material consumption is significantly reduced. It leads to lower cost per part, less material wastage and a more efficient production process.

AM meets art

Additive manufacturing is not only showing huge potential for short run production of complex components, but is also opening up new creative avenues. For example, on show at EuroMold was work by artist and product designer, Lionel T Dean, including a 3D printed titanium gearshift.

“Direct digital manufacturing offers much more than complex structures to creative industries: it is a revolution that will allow us to invent new relationships with customers,” stated Dean, whose work can be seen in the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

"In contrast to mass production, direct production decreases the need for investment and allows designers to respond to niche markets and individual requirements."

Successful 2010/11 financial year for EOS

Over 1,000 EOS laser-sintering systems have now been sold worldwide, a landmark reached in 2011. At the end of September, the company completed a successful year's trading which showed higher growth rates than expected. Sales revenue increased by around 40 per cent compared with the last financial year, taking turnover to more than 90 million Euros.

The number of staff is increasing too, with currently more than 350 employees globally. To support this growth and with a focus on further investment in R&D, the company plans to build a 12,000 m2 building next to its headquarters in Krailling, near Munich, with construction starting in Spring 2012.

Dr Hans J. Langer, founder and CEO of EOS, said: “Twenty-two years after EOS was founded, we see the technology challenging the limits of traditional manufacturing. Many prototyping companies already use laser-sintering for design and manufacture, while more and more OEMs are adopting the technology for high-end manufacturing.

"Last year saw a number of organisational changes which will support further progress. As a result, a broader management team has been established which can now better support the key divisions of the company.

"Sustainability will remain one of the core strategic pillars for the coming years and will strongly influence EOS' plans, for example how we can further optimise the powder consumption in our laser-sintering systems.

"We already see enormous benefits of our technology, which enables cycle time reductions, reduced material consumption, the possibility to reuse materials, and weight reduction through change of material and the integration of lattice structures.”

For more information, visit: www.eos.info

Published in EOS

At the end of September 2011, EOS completed a very successful fiscal year which showed much higher growth rates than expected after a short phase of economic downturn in 2010. Terry Wohlers, industry consultant and analyst, just recently summarized the potential he sees for the market of additive manufacturing technologies, such as laser-sintering: “The additive Manufacturing (AM) industry continuous to have tremendous untapped potential. A product development company may spend five-to-ten percent on design and prototyping for a given program. The remaining 90-95 percent is spent on production, which is why so many companies are aggressively pursuing this segment of the market.”

EOS also recently surpassed 1,000 laser-sintering systems sold worldwide and completed the fiscal year with a revenue increase of around 40 percent, with more than 90 million Euros. The number of staff is increasing too, with currently more than 350 employees globally. In order to support this growth, and with a focus on further investments into R&D, EOS plans to build a 12,000 qm building next to their current headquarters, with construction starting in spring of 2012.

Dr. Hans J. Langer, founder and CEO of EOS, adds: “22 years after EOS was founded we see a technology challenging the limits of traditional manufacturing. A lot of prototyping companies already have adopted the laser-sintering way to design and manufacture. Meanwhile, more and more OEM’s are adopting the technology for their high-end manufacturing needs too. Together with lighthouse customers, we’ll further develop this segment.” He adds: “Where markets change and new target groups develop, EOS has to prepare for the new challenges and market opportunities ahead. As a consequence, the last fiscal year saw a number of organizational changes which will be supporting further progress.”

As a result, a broader management team has been established which can now better support the key divisions of the company, For example, Quality Management has taken a central role at EOS with a focus on prevention and continuous system and process improvement as well as monitoring and control to enable adequate product and process quality-one of the key prerequisites to meet the particular requirements of EOS’ new industrial customers. In addition, EOS’ service and application consultancy offerings are continuously strengthened by increasing local service and support teams. As a result, customer-specific applications can be optimized upfront, offering a competitive advantage to the customer. Overall, EOS supports its customers in maximizing the benefits arising from the use of the laser-sintering technology.

In addition, EOS further invested into laser-sintering process specialist Advanced Laser Materials LLC (ALM), developer and provider of polyamide materials and processes for additive manufacturing. And, as of January 2012, EOS will enter into a joint venture for the German market together with partner BESTinCLASS called “First Surface Oberflächentechnik GmbH” (see separate press release) to extend the offering of post processing services for this region.

“Apart from all of these changes and further developments in and around EOS, sustainability will remain one of the core strategic pillars for the coming years”, adds Langer. “This will strongly contribute to how EOS plans and sets up the new company building, how we further optimize power consumption of our laser-sintering systems. And how – already today – we see enormous benefits of our technology for our customers by enabling cycle time reduction, reduced material consumption or the possibility to re-use materials, weight reduction through change of material (from metal to plastics), and integration of lattice structures, to name but a few.”

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser-sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost-effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser-sintering accelerates product development and optimizes production processes. EOS completed its business year 2010/2011 with revenues of more than 90 million Euros (more than 120 million US$).

For more information, visit: www.eos.info

Published in EOS

EOS, the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems announced today five new members to join their e-Manufacturing partner initiative. Complementing the existing network of e-Manufacturing partners the following companies will join: Germany-based LaserbearbeitungsCenter (LBC) GmbH and kuhn-stoff GmbH & Co KG, UK-based Digital Forming and Within and Swiss-based BESTinCLASS. EOS and e Manufacturing partners join forces to further increase the acceptance of the laser-sintering as a manufacturing process that offers solutions beyond prototyping, thus extending the reach to serial applications too. What all partners have in common is that they are pioneers as well as experts in their respective laser-sintering related field.

Together with EOS, they offer an end-to-end e-Manufacturing process from design to post-processing. Own experiences in the field of laser-sintering on the partner side provide valuable lessons learned for EOS who consequently can ensure a continuous further improvement of the e-Manufacturing process to meet particular customer requirements. Partners, in return, see EOS as their preferred supplier for laser-sintering systems and processes. Dr. Adrian Keppler, Executive Vice President Strategy und Business Development adds: “EOS and its partners jointly believe that laser-sintering is currently challenging the principles of conventional design and manufacturing processes for a large variety of industry-specific applications. Besides others, the EOS partner network is a proof point for the innovative and game changing power of the technology and will help all parties involved to tap the full potential of e-Manufacturing. All new e-Manufacturing partners introduced here are not just sharing a vision but have build up successful business models around the technology, gained practical experiences from this and consequently can perfectly consult customers on how to reach maximum benefit from e-manufacturing with laser-sintering.”

New e-Manufacturing partner LaserbearbeitungsCenter (LBC)

Germany-based LBC has three EOS laser-sintering systems at their facility and as such has sufficient production capacity installed for executing manufacturing projects, particularly for the tooling industry. The company has a very deep knowledge when it comes to adequate conformal cooling design and the manufacturing of mold inserts as well as in production simulation for the laser-sintering process. Ralph Mayer, managing partner of LBC and one of the pioneering users of the laser-sintering technology for the tooling industry in Germany concludes: “Direct Metal Laser-Sintering (DMLS) as provided by EOS is ideally suited to meet the challenges in tooling. We just recently bought the new metal system EOSINT M 280 which not only extended our capacities but also machining efficiency.”

New e-Manufacturing partner kuhn-stoff

Germany-based kuhn-stoff, e-Manufacturing service provider with a particular focus on special purpose machinery has a broad know-how when it comes to design particularly suited for laser-sintering. For their clients, the company answers the key questions ‘How do I translate the potentials of laser-sintering into my product and which rules of the game do I need to consider.’ Hannes Kuhn, general manager of kuhn-stoff adds: ”With laser-sintering, 3D data can be translated directly into parts. As such, conventional manufacturing processes can be supplemented, if not even substituted in some cases. Considering the fact that in special purpose machinery around twenty percent of a machine consists of interface components that are normally very time and cost intensive to design and to manufacture and cannot be covered with standard components, laser-sintered parts – in return – can have a huge impact.”

New e-Manufacturing partner Digital Forming

UK-based Digital Forming has developed a co-design platform comprised of software and supply chain which allows two or more parties to collaborate on the design of a product, where one party is the ‘lead designer’ setting parameters in 3D space for the others. In this way, the platform can be used for the co-creation of new products as well as offering the next generation of customization tools for design orientated companies. The platform is driven by intelligent software that will not allow the co-designer to take the product design to a point where it is no longer buildable, has structural integrity or is fit for function. Lisa Harouni, CEO of Digital Forming says the platform ’democratises’ design for non-CAD users, opening up possibilities and accessibility to Additive Manufacturing technologies. She adds: “Once a bespoke product has been created, the platform will manage the consequential supply chain. Our platform in conjunction with part manufacturing via laser-sintering makes it a rapid, affordable, competitive, flexible design-driven and environmentally friendly process.”

New e-Manufacturing partner Within

Within, a London-based software house and licensing company adds extra know-how to the complete laser-sintering process chain with their software solutions. With years of experience in design for the laser-sintering process, Within has developed a suite of software tools that enable their clients to optimise the design of their components to the laser-sintering process. This can enable them to create lighter weight products which are fully self-supporting but which also meet the functional requirements of the component once in use. Siavash Mahdavi, CEO of Within states: “Laser-sintering can be a game changer to many industries but fully exploiting this revolutionary manufacturing technique requires new software solutions that have not existed to date. By combining artificial intelligence, design rules and computer simulation, we have created software tools that make it easy for you to design buildable and functional complex components for a wide range of industries from Medical to Aerospace, Automotive and Tooling.”

New e-Manufacturing partner BESTinCLASS (BinC)

BESTinCLASS, Swiss-based high precision surface finishing provider offers a post-processing called Micro Machining Process (MMP). Parts manufactured with the laser-sintering technology can be selectively post-treated up to a mirror-like polish. Only those areas are treated where a particular finishing is required, without altering shapes, even complex ones and as such is particularly efficient on DMLS parts. Laurent Cataldo, Chief Executive Officer at BinC adds: “Apart from the watch making and luxury goods industry, MMP can be applied to a lot of industries including aerospace, medical, mould making and auto-sport, all of which enjoy performance gains as a result of the unique accuracy and control provided by MMP. Costs and turnaround times are predictable and controlled; Finishes can be reproduced to industrial standards for multiple parts; Treated parts are free from contamination; part geometries and mechanical properties of the treated surfaces are not altered, cavities can be accessed. Hardening is minimized and the process is approved for parts used in medical applications.”

About LaserBearbeitungsCenter (LBC)

Based in Kornwestheim, LBC makes modern laser technologies available to its customers. Particularly in the field of mold making LBC has a broad know-how covering the entire range of the process chain: from manufacturing molding blanks as well as molds with an optimized conformal cooling to the design of customer-specific cooling solutions, to the simulation of thermally optimised injection molding tools as well as consulting and engineering solutions. For LBC, a key to success is that they work with customers on a partner level. For more information, visit: www.lasergenerieren.de/en/index.php

About kuhn-stoff

Founded in 2005, kuhn-stoff Gmbh & Co KG is a young company which is exclusively focusing on the design and manufacturing of laser-sintered parts made of polyamide. With this, kuhn-stoff is particularly supporting customers in the special purpose machinery manufacturing industry. kuhn-stoff is inspired by the EOS e-Manufacturing concept and fully supports it. He is the leading service provider when it comes to the implementation of laser-sintered parts as end products. For more information, visit: www.kuhn-stoff.de

About Digital Forming

Digital Forming Ltd. was established in November 2008 by 4 partners from science, creative and business backgrounds; Assa Ashuach, Dr Siavash Mahdavi, Nicolas de Cordes and Lisa Harouni. Digital Forming is a 3D software house that proposes to revolutionize product customization and co-design. The company has developed an extensive platform to link designers, brands, and their customers to Additive Manufacturing technology. Digital Forming offers its software and platform through a SaaS licensing model and undertakes consultancy for companies who are looking for a competitive edge through Additive Manufacturing technologies. For more information, visit: www.digitalforming.com

About Within

Within is a licensing company and software house, based in London that has created tools which constantly push at the boundaries of the possi­bilities in additive manufacturing. Within can improve the performance of products and reduce their weight through a variety of software tools. This is primarily achieved by the use of customised lattice structures. Our technology is inspired by nature and has resulted in the creation of advanced forms of Bio-inspired Artificial Intelligence. These tools understand both the functionality of the product as well as the design rules associated with additive manufacturing. Within’s current suite of technologies can make products exhibit properties that were previously unachievable. For more information, visit: www.withinlab.com

About BESTinCLASS

Founded in Switzerland in 1995, BESTinCLASS SA has developed the micro-machining process (MMP), a proprietary precision surface finishing technique. MMP can finely distinguish and selectively apply different primary roughness, secondary roughness and waviness profiles to surfaces. Working from its own treatment labs, BESTinCLASS is poised to provide manufacturers with custom finishes to meet their specifications. An exceptional feature of MMP is its ability to provide selective surface finishes that can be reproduced to industrial standards. The company and the Joint venture using the MMP Technology employs 75 people worldwide, including 35 people in the headquarter in Genolier Switzerland. For more information, visit: www.binc.biz/gb/index.php

About EOS

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser-sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost-effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser-sintering accelerates product development and optimizes production processes. EOS completed its business year 2010/2011 with revenues of more than 90 million Euros (125 million US$). For more information, visit: www.eos.info

Published in EOS

A novel, active suspension system helped Coventry University’s Phoenix Racing team to win the Shell-sponsored award for most fuel-efficient car in the premier class of this year's Formula Student championship. Key components of the system, which were both compact and lightweight, were produced layer-by-layer from titanium alloy powder (Ti64) in EOS laser-sintering machines.

At Silverstone in July 2011, against fierce competition from over 100 universities around the world, the single-seater racing car was placed 20th overall. It was 5th in the endurance challenge, involving a separate, 22 km race during which the cars prove their speed and durability and the students execute a pit-stop and driver change.

Comprising third-year motorsport engineering students at Coventry University, Phoenix Racing, under team leader, Dan Priestman, this year produced its most advanced and successful car in over 10 years of racing in the Formula Student competition. The students took full advantage of the university’s motorsport workshop, in particular the direct metal laser-sintering (DMLS) machines which were made available through sponsorship by laser-sintering equipment manufacturer, EOS.

The equipment allowed the students to manufacture intricate titanium parts for an electronically-controlled, hydraulic anti-roll system to ensure that the car maintained grip in the corners, a clever design feature that was acknowledged by the judges. All were industry professionals that had not previously come across such a system at the competition.

Causing a stir

Considerable interest was also shown in the active front suspension by a number of firms in the motorsport and automotive sectors, including Mercedes-Benz Grand Prix, Mercedes-Benz HighPerformanceEngines and Jaguar Land Rover.

Other Formula Student competitors were similarly curious, so much so that the team had to keep the system covered while the race car was being worked on to allow enough space around the vehicle.

Towards the end of the event, rumours had travelled up and down the pit lane suggesting that a top international team had spent the previous two nights trying to reverse-engineer the system, which was comically nicknamed the Doomsday Device at the championship.

Development of the hydraulic anti-roll system

The Phoenix race car was designed by the students under the guidance of Charles Kingdom, Senior Lecturer Materials and Engineering Design at Coventry University. Early on in the project, it became clear that the position of the front roll centre was below ground level, which increased the lateral transfer load, created a large body roll angle and produced a pronounced understeer.

This implied that a front anti-roll bar might be required.  However, a traditional bar could not be used, first because technical regulations meant that the feature would be outside the allowed chassis envelope, and secondly because it would have been difficult to fix the suspension pick-up due to the location of the front rockers. A further drawback with a passive anti-roll bar is that it transmits a single wheel bump around the whole chassis.

Phoenix Racing's new, active anti-roll system, which was the brainchild of student team member, Tom Edwardes, consists of two double-acting hydraulic cylinders connected top to bottom from left to right.  The actuators are fixed at one end to the front suspension rockers and at the other end to the vehicle chassis.  As one actuator compresses, the opposite actuator also compresses. In this simplistic form, the system mimics an infinitely stiff roll bar, so a method of varying the difference between the two actuators was required to allow roll resistance to be adjustable.

Two valve blocks were therefore added in-line, each consisting of a piston and a spring.  As the right-hand cylinder compresses during cornering, the fluid is displaced into the right-hand valve block. The piston compresses the spring, resulting in less fluid moving into the left hand cylinder.  This results in a difference in displacement between the two actuators.  The left hand valve block moves downwards to equalise the difference in fluid that is displaced.

Additive manufacture creates compact components

The actuator casing was manufactured from Ti64 powder using the DMLS process from EOS.  The additive procedure allows complex structures to be manufactured, directly from a CAD model, that would often be difficult or impossible to machine conventionally, such as the spiral oil feed pipe around the cylinder body. DMLS also frequently results in the component being smaller and lighter than it would otherwise be using traditional manufacturing techniques, in this case reducing the weight of the race car and making the components easier to install.

EOS produced the actuator casing and the rod end in collaboration with the University of Wolverhampton, while the internals were manufactured at Coventry University. Machining of the titanium parts was carried out at James Camden Engineering, Warwick, and at the University of Wolverhampton, where Dr Mark Stanford worked for many hours to make some of the finished items.  The cylinder bores were honed at Crosshatch Services, Coventry, and the hydraulic fittings were supplied by Brown & Miller Racing Solutions, Slough.  Overall length of the unit is 170 mm, with a bore of 25 mm and a 22 mm stroke. Weight is just 300 grams.

The valve blocks were also manufactured from Ti64 using DMLS.  It allowed the overall length of the units to be reduced by locating two hydraulic fittings alongside each valve body rather than at one end, both fittings being fed via two flow pipes running from the bottom of the block.  The component also features a mounting face and feet to locate the valve block to the chassis tubes.

Within the block are a piston, spring holder, spring and compressor.  The latter can be used to preload the spring within the holder using a one-millimetre pitch thread machined into the top half of the titanium casing. This allows the roll resistance of the vehicle to be adjusted either by the preload or by changing the spring.  The unit has a bore of 30 mm, an overall length of 120 mm and a mass of 450 grams.

Features and benefits of the hydraulic active system compared with a traditional anti-roll bar may be summarised as follows:

•    The active suspension is easily packaged within the chassis.
•    Roll stiffness can be quickly and simply adjusted, even by the driver.
•    The roll mechanism is damped.
•    Weight is comparable to that of a standard anti-roll system.
•    The energy of a single wheel bump is absorbed.
•    It is possible to develop the technique further into a full vehicle system to incorporate pitch and dive resistance.

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world's leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser-sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser-sintering accelerates product development and optimises production processes. EOS completed its business year 2010/2011 with revenues of more than 90 million Euros (124.3 million US$). The company employs 300 people worldwide, 250 of them in Krailling near Munich, Germany.

For more information, visit: www.eos.info

Published in EOS

Mass customization was dreamed about more than two decades ago as an attainable business strategy to reach individuals with products tailored perfectly to them. But technology constraints and the economics of standardized parts and modularized product lines won the day—resulting in copycat car body “platforms” that reached across brands, and PC boxes of mind-numbing uniformity.

Yet today, on an otherwise typical shop floor in Cincinnati, OH, a new generation of machines sits alongside traditional equipment and turns out unique, one-off products with astounding shapes and game-changing cost savings.

Morris Technologies Inc. (MTI) and its sister company Rapid Quality Manufacturing (RQM) operate 20 direct metal laser-sintering (DMLS) systems—the most of any organization in the world—from German producer EOS, and are at the forefront of OEMs and service bureaus in defining just what can be made by “growing” custom parts.

MTI was one of the first shops in the U.S. to collaborate closely with major aerospace and medical producers to explore laser-sintering. Now on its way to certifying laser-sintered metals in both fields, the company is making everything from lightweight components for military unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) to cobalt-chrome hip replacement prototypes for patients of the future.

Others are creating exotic lattice-like systems in plastics for lighting homes and offices, designer shoes with heels of braided titanium and, soon, cranial implants, knees and medical instruments designed around the exact geometry of the individual human body and the surgeon’s hands. The wide-open design freedom of laser-sintering systems, for making single parts and meeting low-volume production needs, creates the potential for serving not just doctors and engineers, but also start-up entrepreneurs who want to make clothing, games and consumer goods but don’t own factories or have the resources for risky, high-volume product trials in untapped markets.

“EOS technology has transformed a significant part of our business already,” says Greg Morris, CEO of MTI. “Laser-sintering is opening up whole new categories of opportunities for MTI and RQM, and we’ve expanded our DMLS capacity to more readily meet customers’ needs for rapid turnaround,” he notes.

“Customers are excited and are teaming up with us aggressively to quickly understand the potential of EOS laser-sintering and to test and advance their application concepts,” says Morris. “It’s a race to introduce innovative, bold ideas ahead of others. In ten years, people will look back at today and see the immense impact additive manufacturing has had on industry.”

Laser-sintering is an additive process that melts materials layer-by-layer at high temperatures, until the final—often complex—shape is achieved. Traditional machining, mold/cast or sheet forming technologies either cut away or pour and inject materials, and have well-defined limits that carry over to the geometries and performance characteristics of the products.

By contrast, EOS systems enable the designing-in of higher performance attributes previously unaffordable or even impossible to construct. A mold with cooling channels that snake around the bends and curves of a part is one practical example. What’s more, all this can be done in a “lights out,” automated operation. It’s these new shapes and manufacturing economics, coupled with a devotion to quality and validation, that are behind the company’s steady move to market leadership and an installed base exceeding 1,000 high-end systems worldwide.

“The economic impact of additive manufacturing (AM) is significant, especially considering the opportunities in custom and short-run production," says Terry Wohlers, industry consultant and analyst. "If one could calculate the monetary impact from the thousands of companies that benefit from AM, it would be in the billions of dollars annually.

"The AM industry has grown in the double digits for 14 of its 23 years," notes Wohlers. "It continues to have tremendous untapped potential. A product development company may spend five-to-ten percent on design and prototyping for a given program. The remaining 90-95 percent is spent on production, which is why so many companies are aggressively pursuing this segment of the market."

To learn more about EOS laser-sintering, visit: www.eos.info/en/home.html or www.youtube.com/eosgmbh

Published in EOS

Minister of State for Universities and Science, David Willetts MP, visited the University of Exeter’s Streatham Campus on Monday 26 September 2011, at which he was briefed on the university’s £275 million campus developments and was given an overview of its world-class research and innovative collaborations with business and industry.

The Minister toured the new £2.6 million Centre for Additive Layer Manufacturing (CALM), opened ten days earlier, which is supported by EADS and part financed by the European Union. The university already had an established reputation for materials research and additive layer manufacturing, having previously worked with companies to develop products as diverse as medical implants, car parts and a museum clock.

The new facility houses additive layer manufacturing machines working in various powder materials, including the UK’s only EOSINT P 800. Built by the German firm, EOS, it can build parts at temperatures up to 385 degrees Centigrade, allowing it to produce parts from high-performance polymers. These materials, including EOS PEEK HP3, are mechanically strong and wear-resistant in the toughest of operating environments. Such polymers are being developed as alternatives to metals for applications in the aerospace, medical and motorsports sectors in particular.

Those producing prototypes and developing new products will benefit from CALM, which will enable businesses, entrepreneurs and researchers to harness the potential of additive layer manufacturing. Businesses will also benefit from the technical expertise of staff at the centre, gained through their experience in industry and engineering research. Heavily subsidised rates are being offered to SMEs (small and medium enterprises) in Devon, Dorset, Wiltshire and Cornwall to give smaller businesses access to world-class facilities at affordable prices.

Council members of the University of Exeter and senior management also gave David Willets a glimpse of the Forum project, a new £48 million development for the heart of Streatham Campus. The Forum will feature an inspirational mix of outside and inside space that will deliver a new Student Services Centre, retail and catering outlets, a refurbished library, new technology-rich learning spaces, a 400-seat lecture theatre and a new university reception.

Businesses wanting to find out more about the CALM centre and how they can use its facilities can find out more at: www.exeter.ac.uk/calm

Published in EOS

GPI Prototype announced that it has completed the installation of an EOSINT M 280 machine from EOS.  The EOSINT M 280 is an updated version of the EOSINT M 270 currently being used at GPI to build metal parts additively.  The addition of a second machine establishes GPI as a leader in rapid prototyping and expands their DMLS material selection to include aluminum and titanium.

GPI is committed to showcasing their additive technology at industry events and informing customers of the benefits and cost savings of additive manufacturing vs traditional machining. On September 14th-15th, 2011 at the ODT Conference & Exhibition in Fort Wayne, Indiana, GPI will be showcasing parts made via DMLS at booth #803.  GPI will also be exhibiting at Design & Manufacturing Midwest on September 20-22, 2011 in Chicago, IL at booth 2234.  GPI has established a foothold in a variety of markets including medical, aerospace, automotive & consumer products.

DMLS offers many advantages vs traditional tooling including the ability to manufacture complex geometries and shapes not possible with CNC machining. Conformal cooling channels can also be integrated into designs to dramatically reduce injection molding cycle/lead times and lower costs.  GPI offers 8 material choices for DMLS including Stainless Steel, Cobalt Chrome, Maraging Steel, Bronze Alloy, Titanium Alloy, Aluminum & Nickel Alloy.  Parts can be built in 20 micron layers with a turnaround time of a few days.

Top-quality, accurate, clean prototypes can be built in hours and shipped to the customer in a few days.

Additional services include Stereolithography (SLA), Selective Laser Sintering (SLS), 3D Printing (3DP), Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM), Room Temperature Vulcanization (RTV), Investment Casting, Tooling, CNC Machining, Finishing & Painting, Laser Scanning & Packaging solutions.  These services are priced very competitively in the industry while providing the best in quality and customer service.

For more information, visit: www.gpiprototype.com

Published in GPI Prototype

Attendees seeking to explore the unparalleled benefits that laser-sintering offers to the rapidly expanding unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) industry can get a good start at Booth 1216 at the AUVSI Unmanned Systems North America 2011 (Washington, D.C., Aug. 16-19). There EOS, the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems, will be demonstrating UAV parts and presenting background from technical experts on the use of laser-sintering as a competitive business strategy.

“UAV design and manufacture is the most dynamically growing and evolving sector of the aerospace industry, and it has its own demanding challenges,” says Udo Behrendt, Business Development Manager Aerospace at EOS. “The unique capabilities of our systems meet these challenges while eliminating some of the costs and manufacturing restrictions of traditional processes.”

Laser-sintering involves no tooling, and very little machining or fixturing, making it highly cost-effective and speedy for the low production runs of most UAVs. Re-designs of parts for changing missions and payloads, including mass customization for individual UAVs, are inexpensive as well. Because laser-sintering is an additive manufacturing technology, it can be used to create complex geometries that integrate multiple parts for weight savings, or that fit into the irregular space left in existing assemblies. Designs being laser-sintered for UAVs include fuel tanks, engine shrouds, control vanes, filter boxes, and air ducting, for example.

Available laser-sintered materials are well-suited for unmanned aircraft. EOS AlSi10Mg Aluminum can be used to create lighter-weight thin-walled parts. EOS NickelAlloy IN718 and IN625 provide high tensile strength, excellent processability and uniform corrosion resistance. In plastics, aside from various polyamide 11 and 12 materials, EOS also offers fire-retardant polyamide PA 2210 FR as well as PEEK HP3, the first high-performance thermoplastic polymer available for laser-sintering.

Still more materials options are available from EOS’ strategic partner Advanced Laser Materials (ALM). Between 60 and 70 percent of ALM’s business is creating one-of-a-kind plastics formulations in close cooperation with individual customers. “Just as laser-sintering promotes customized, design-driven manufacturing, we use our expertise with polymer bases and various additives to customize plastics,” says Donald Vanelli, president of ALM. “The customers know best what they want in terms of physical requirements, and we understand how to formulate a plastic to match their needs.” In addition to tailoring materials, ALM also has standardized offerings such as 640-GSL, an extremely lightweight glass- and fiber-reinforced plastic with an average density 15 percent less than nylon—and nylon has about the same density as water—and a high strength imparted by the fibers.

Andrew Snow, Regional Director, Sales, at EOS of North America, says, “The UAV industry has barely begun tapping the potential power of laser-sintering to create innovative, reliable parts. There’s no better proof of how our technology supports unmanned aircraft design and manufacture than the range of invention, in plastics and metals both, that our customers are displaying at this show.”

For more information, visit: http://symposium.auvsi.org/auvsi11/public/enter.aspx

Published in EOS

EOS, the world leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems, in collaboration with EADS Innovation Works (IW), has started work on a study to understand the potential of the Direct Metal Laser-sintering (DMLS) process to generate savings in the use of energy and raw materials. This will help to develop a new range of manufacturing technologies that will integrate sustainability relevant aspects into products and product manufacturing.

By capitalizing on the benefits the DMLS process offers, including the net-shape technology benefits to generate weight-reduced structures, along with the low use of raw materials, DMLS technology has a huge potential to contribute to sustainable development in manufacturing.

A previous study conducted by EADS IW showed that although the use of energy during the manufacturing phase could not compare with conventional manufacturing processes, energy consumption during the use-phase of aircraft components dropped significantly. Indeed the DMLS technology unlocks structural optimization, leading to weight reduction of the components, and thus fuel and CO2 emissions reduction.

In parallel, EOS carried out a Product Carbon Footprint (PCF) calculation of one kilogram of sintered material.  The findings supported EADS IW’s research, as they showed that the greatest impact on reducing CO2 emissions and energy consumption was to be found during the use-phase of laser-sintered components. It further identified the most important drivers of energy consumption along the B2B value chain; particularly around the supply of raw materials and the use of cooling systems.  It was while comparing data that EADS IW and EOS agreed to carry out a collaborative environmental study.

Technologies applied to aerospace normally have to go through a nine steps process called TRL (Technology Readiness Level) before a technology goes through qualification. For each TRL review, the evolution in maturity of a technology is measured in terms of performance, engineering, manufacturing and operational readiness as well as value and risk and sustainability/environment. The latter is a new criterion linked to EADS Group’s eco-efficiency vision and a joint study focusing on this criterion made perfect sense.

Following on from the original study, EADS IW and EOS  will now complete a full Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) – covering energy consumption, material use, CO2 emissions and use of hazardous material – benchmarking an optimized design for use with EOS’ next generation platform EOSINT M 280 metal system. Results should show improvements on the sustainable performances not only on the component, but also on its manufacturing.

Adrian Keppler, Manager Strategy and Business Development at EOS stresses: “There is a consensus within society that companies have to address and to meet their responsibility for our environment and our natural resources. As such, sustainability is one of the pillars of the EOS strategy. Our technology can help to improve environmental performance at clients such as EADS IW through freedom of new designs and innovation, reduced energy and CO2 emissions. At the same time, DMLS enables lightweight design as well as a reduced material consumption and transportation emissions due to production on demand.”

Cyrille Peignot, Sustainability Engineer at EADS IW, adds: “We shape the future of aerospace as a company. But in order to meet our responsibilities we have to tackle the current challenges such as access and availability of resources, as well as aircraft emissions. EOS is one of our suppliers in the Additive Layer Manufacturing (ALM) arena and their technology allows us to identify internal saving potentials. Indeed when combined with topology optimization, ALM can deliver weight reduction and, consequently, reduced fuel consumption, but more importantly economise on use of raw materials, frequently a significant cost to manufacturers.  So far we have been able to redesign a part during the case study process that meets our objectives: the use of fewer resources during manufacturing while producing almost no waste, as well as a significant decrease of the energy bill. All these are key factors to improve sustainability on an aircraft’s performance and its manufacturing.”

The joint case study of EOS with EADS IW will be carried on throughout the rest of the year and further more detailed results will be made available towards the end of 2011.

Photos: Cyrille Peignot, Sustainability Engineer, EADS IW. and Adrian Keppler, Manager Strategy and Business Development, EOS.

For more information, visit: www.eos.info or www.eads.com

Published in EOS

OPM is very pleased to announce it has secured funding for the purchase of an EOSINT P 800 SLS machine for the production of the firm’s OsteoFab™ medical implants. The funding was provided by the Connecticut Innovations, Inc.’s BioScience Facilities Fund. Financing is in the form of special debt instrument. The equipment is part of a multi-million dollar project to produce medical implants through additive fabrication with the firm’s proprietary OXPEKK® products which have properties comparable to human bone. The facility will be certified to ISO 13485, ISO 9001 and AS9100 and be equipped with clean rooms and world-class design and inspection capabilities. The project is expected to be completed by September 2011.

“We are very pleased that CI has provided the funding via their BioScience Facilities Fund for this extremely important project. We have had a long, successful relationship with CI that has resulted in positive financial return on their previous investment and the growth of jobs and world class technologies in the state,” said Scott DeFelice, President of OPM. “We are exceedingly confident that this particular undertaking will further position our firm and the state on the leading edge of biomedical and manufacturing technologies.”

OPM currently sells its biomedical polymeric OXPEKK® products on a global basis with regulatory approvals from the FDA, KFDA, ANVISA, COFEPRIS, and several CE Marks. It has traditionally sold these products as raw materials. With the addition of the EOSINT P 800, however, it will now be able to provide value-added manufacturing in-house. The P 800 allows for direct digital additive manufacturing through selective laser sintering (SLS), which means nearly anything that can be designed can be built with the firm’s implantable polymer. This enhanced capability positions the firm to lead innovation in biomedical technologies and the polymer market. The initial focus of the firm’s efforts will be the production of custom cranial and maxillofacial implants which are anatomically identical implants derived directly from a CT scan or MRI.

For more information, visit: www.oxfordpm.com

A glimpse into the fast-approaching future of mass-customized medical devices is available at Booth #2307 during MD&M East (Jacob K. Javits Convention Center, New York City, June 7-9). There EOS, the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering equipment, is operating an EOSINT M 280, the company’s most advanced Direct Metal Laser-Sintering (DMLS) system yet, showing how this technology can create uniquely patient-matched products that promote comfort and improve treatment.

Because laser-sintering is an additive manufacturing process, it can easily build complex geometries such as those for dental prostheses, orthopedic implants, and personalized cutting and drilling guides that reduce surgical and patient recovery times. The technology can also make lightweight porous solids or rough surfaces that promote bone growth.  A number of biocompatible, sterilizable materials, including stainless steel, cobalt chrome, titanium, polyamides, and polyaryletherketone (PEEK) are available for laser-sintering. The EOS booth will feature a broad array of existing products and prototypes in plastics and metals.

“Medical manufacturers worldwide have already discovered the benefits of one-off, best-fit designs,” says Martin Bullemer, EOS Business Development Manager Medical. “Going forward, they are pursuing validation and certification for in vivo applications.” For example, EOS  participated recently in a European Union-funded project to develop patient-matched, porous, PEEK craniofacial implants that encourage osteointegration with very good results to further develop this application.

Bullemer and Dr. Siavash H. Mahdavi of WITHIN Technologies Ltd. are giving a joint presentation titled “e-Manufacturing with Laser-Sintering for the Medical Device Industry” at the Innovation Briefs booth, #767 (1:30-1:55 p.m. Tuesday, June 7).

Also at the booth are two companies that apply emerging technologies to enhance laser-sintering applications: WITHIN Technologies Ltd., whose FEA/CAD optimization software works with plastic and DMLS systems to create strong, lightweight parts, including innovative, load-bearing lattice structures; and BESTinCLASS, a Swiss company known for its high-precision micromachining.

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser-sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost-effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser-sintering accelerates product development and optimizes production processes. EOS completed its business year 2009/2010 with revenues of 64 million Euros (90.4 million US$). The company employs 300 people worldwide, 250 of them in Krailling near Munich, Germany.

For more information visit: www.eos.info

Published in EOS

Run by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Formula Student challenges teams of undergraduates from around the world to design and build a single-seat racing car and compete at Silverstone against more than 100 other teams. The University of Warwick has participated every year for the past decade and in 2010 achieved its best ever race position – 22nd – thanks in no small part to extensive use of additive manufacture (AM).

In this respect, laser sintering machine and powder producer, EOS, has played a major role in helping the university to move up the field. Several years ago, an EOSINT P 380 was purchased to produce optimised plastic components for the race cars in short time frames. Then last year, for the first time, EOS in its role as technical partner contributed further by manufacturing and supplying laser sintered metal components.

The university is also fortunate to have on site WMG (formerly Warwick Manufacturing Group), which owns the EOS plastic processing machine installed in its International Manufacturing Centre. The group, which amongst other functions supports undergraduate and postgraduate projects, has also invested over the years in other AM machines. They include stereolithography and fused deposition modelling as well as EOS' sand sintering technology for casting.

Principal Teaching Fellow, Dr Steve Maggs, said, "With the help of laser sintered components made from titanium alloy, Inconel and alumide, last year's team managed to reduce the weight of the race car (fully fuelled) to 192 kg, 22 kg lighter than the previous year's car.

"The major advantage with AM is that the weight of each component can be optimised and parts can be produced quickly, late in the build process.

"The technology is perfect for concurrent engineering, which is essential for our students as each project time scale is relatively short, from October through to the following July.

"If parts are made in a rush shortly before the car is due to race, it will almost certainly add unnecessary weight, but this is avoided by exploiting the flexibility of layer-by-layer manufacture.

"We hope to make more extensive use of AM in the coming years. With the help of new designs and materials, it should allow us to achieve our target race car weight of 150 kg."

Lighter components and improved handling

In last year's car, there were three main areas where AM lowered the weight of components compared with the 2009 model. First, titanium alloy and carbon fibre replaced hardened steel in the production of the half shafts driving the two front wheels. Second, Inconel was substituted for steel tubing when producing the exhaust header. Third, laser sintered alumide, an aluminium-filled polyamide 12 powder, was used instead of a casting or fabrication for the induction system.

Driveshafts

Looking in more detail at the half shafts, their production used to be a headache for the university team, as finalisation of their design always came late in the build.

They were previously turned from hardened steel bar of approximately 20 mm diameter and then had a circlip groove and splines machined at both ends to mesh with the constant velocity (CV) joints. Replacing them in the 2010 car were shafts comprising end pieces with integral spines made from laser sintered EOS Titanium Ti64 alloy. They secured two ends of a 30 mm diameter, filament-wound, carbon fibre tubular shaft supplied by Crompton Technology Group.

David Cooper, who along with 11 other students chose the university's Formula Student entry as his final year project, graduated last year in mechanical engineering. He took up the story:

"Changing from steel to titanium and carbon fibre cut the weight of each half shaft by 70 per cent, from 1.35 to 0.4 kg, which amounted to a saving equivalent to one per cent of the car's total weight.

"In addition, less energy is required to rotate the lighter shaft, allowing better use of the power generated by the 510 cc single cylinder engine (KTM 525).

"It was notable that true net shape manufacture of the end pieces by EOS using its laser sintering technology resulted in a spline that fitted better than the previous machined version, with less play in the CV joints."

He went on to say that the lead time for producing the shafts was two weeks but now that the process is established, they could be manufactured in a couple of days. This compares favourably with the six to eight weeks typically needed to machine the shafts from steel bar. The transmission was not only put through its paces at Silverstone last year but has also undergone well over 100 hours of road testing, without any loss of performance or other adverse effects.

Exhaust header

EOS Inconel 718 powder was laser sintered to produce the exhaust header, which is the first stage in the exhaust system and has to withstand high temperatures and vibration. Previously, the part was made by bending tubular steel sections on a mandrel and welding them together.

Whereas the latter construction was necessarily of fixed wall thickness, the Inconel header has a section thickness that varies from 0.5 to 5.0 mm thanks to the application of HyperWorks modelling, analysis and simulation software from Altair Engineering. It allowed the volume of material in the header to be reduced, cutting the weight 40 per cent while maintaining performance.

Mr Cooper continued, "This benefit was only the start, as AM led to other significant improvements to the design of the car.

"The flexibility of design meant that the whole exhaust system could be redesigned and made shorter, leading to a total weight reduction from 4 to 3 kg.

"We were also able to drop the exhaust, including the 2 kg silencer box, by 500 mm from the middle of the car to the bottom, lowering the centre of gravity and noticeably improving handling around the track.

"F1 teams often make their exhaust manifolds by machining two blocks of Inconel and welding the halves together. So the weight- and time-saving AM technique, which produces a fully dense, corrosion resistant component that is robust and able to withstand high temperatures, may well be of interest to mainstream motor racing."

Induction system – and other alumide parts

It is difficult to optimise the shape and length of the car's induction system early in a Formula Student project, so it is advantageous to leave finalising the design until the last minute. For the university's entry last year, the plenum chamber and inlet runners were produced quickly from alumide powder in WMG's EOSINT P 380.

Again, layer-by-layer manufacture from the CAD model gave design flexibility while the polyamide and aluminium mixture produced a stiff structure. Little post processing was needed and the component only needed porosity sealing and painting. Weight was cut to under 1 kg, significantly lighter than the cast and fabricated induction systems used in previous years.

Other components on the car, especially late-configurable items, were designed on the fly and made from alumide to reduce weight. They included boxes for the electrics, cable clips, dashboard panelling and the rear light brackets. Mr Cooper pointed out that smaller parts such as the clips were made inside the void of the plenum chamber to maximise use of the P 380's build volume.

Not only do the Formula Student judges assess each car's speed, manoeuvrability and endurance, but they also appraise cost, business potential and aesthetics. In the latter respect AM has a big contribution to make, as it does not matter how complex a part is – it will be just as easy to manufacture as a simple one – so the degree of design freedom is almost limitless. Similarly, it is immaterial if each clip, say, is slightly different from the next, as there is no penalty in manufacturing cost or time.

Described as a breeding ground for world class engineers, Formula Student's key aims are to inspire the next generation and address the skills shortage.  It achieves this by providing crucial practical experience and transferable skills that can be used in a diverse range of industries. AM is a core technology that is destined for growth across all sectors.

About EOS

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world's leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser-sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser-sintering accelerates product development and optimises production processes. EOS completed its business year 2009/2010 with revenues of 64 million Euros. The company employs 300 people worldwide, 250 of them in Krailling near Munich, Germany. For more information visit: www.eos.info


About WMG

WMG, formerly known as Warwick Manufacturing Group, was founded by Professor Lord Bhattacharyya in 1980 in order to reinvigorate UK manufacturing.  Its mission is to improve the competitiveness of companies through the application of value adding innovation, new technologies and skills deployment, bringing academic rigour to industrial and organisational practice.

It is an international group with collaborative centres in the UK, China, India, Malaysia, Russia, Singapore and Thailand.  As an academic department of the University of Warwick, it occupies a unique position between academia and industry.  Its success over the past 30 years is the result of cutting edge research and effective knowledge transfer, working with global companies to develop innovative products and processes to real world problems.  The strength of its expertise spans three capability areas: digital technologies; materials and manufacturing plus operations and business management.

It is an international centre for world class management studies, offering unrivalled postgraduate and professional education programmes. Collaborating with over 500 UK companies, it has developed a focused programme based on real world scenarios that enables managers and leaders to succeed in a constantly changing global environment. For more information visit: www2.warwick.ac.uk/fac/sci/wmg

Published in EOS

The first North American public unveiling of the new EOSINT M 280, EOS’ most advanced direct metal laser-sintering (DMLS) system, is at Booth #202 at the RAPID 2011 show (May 24-26, Minneapolis, Minnesota). Innovative process and control features of the M 280 complete the evolution of DMLS systems into full-fledged production tools for the economical, batch-size, optimized manufacture of parts at all stages from prototyping through finished product.

“Our newest system reflects a growing demand, led by precision-driven industries such as aerospace and medical manufacturing, for laser-sintering as a proven production method,” says Andy Snow, Regional Sales Director at EOS of North America. “The M 280 can build fully functional parts in a wide range of materials, with standardization and quality assurance capabilities on a par with those of traditional processes.”

The new DMLS equipment expands on the capabilities of the EOSINT M 270, currently the leading system on the market for additive layer manufacturing of metal components. Among the features of the M 280 of particular value for creating end-use parts are:

* Either a 200- or a 400-watt solid-state laser for targeted radiation and consistently accurate performance
* Laser Power Monitoring (LPM) to control the build process
* The ability to use either nitrogen or argon protective atmospheres. This allows the machine to manufacture in light metals, tooling steel, and super alloys that include titanium, aluminum, cobalt chrome, and Inconel.

Available options for controlled manufacturing, such as Part Property Profiles for standardized production and Integrated Process Chain Management modules, can be added to the M 280 at any time.

In addition to introducing a DMLS system that is focused on the needs of manufacturers, EOS is also exhibiting recently developed metal and plastic materials for specialized industrial uses:

-EOS NickelAlloy IN625.  Material properties such as high tensile strength, excellent processability and good corrosion resistance make this super alloy highly suited for use in aerospace, chemical, motor sport and marine industry applications.

-PrimePart FR (PA 2241 FR).  This material is flame-retardant and particularly suitable for aerospace. Based on PA 12 polyamide, it has an 11 percent elongation at break—significantly higher than its predecessor, PA 2210FR. It also has a lower refresh rate (ratio of new to re-used powder), offering cost savings and environmental benefits.

-PrimePart ST (PEBA).  This flexible elastomeric polyether block amide has unique customizable mechanical properties. Different laser-exposure strategies can be used to create either hard or soft components. PrimePart ST has an excellent refresh rate, making it an environmentally favorable alternative to other flexible materials for laser-sintering. With this plastic, previously impossible laser-sintered applications, such as flexible fasteners, seals or buffers, are possible.

EOS is highlighting two companies that apply emerging technologies to enhance laser-sintering applications: WITHIN Technologies Ltd., whose FEA/CAD optimization software works with plastic and DMLS systems to create strong, lightweight parts, including innovative, load-bearing lattice structures; and BESTinCLASS, a Swiss company known for its high-precision micromachining.

An EOS FORMIGA P 100 for plastics laser-sintering will be in operation at the company’s booth as well.

EOS will hold its EOS of North America User Day (EOS NAUD) on May 23, 2011, the day before the RAPID exposition begins and in the same location as the show.

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser-sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost-effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser-sintering accelerates product development and optimizes production processes. EOS completed its business year 2009/2010 with revenues of 64 million Euros (90.4 million US$). The company employs 300 people worldwide, 250 of them in Krailling near Munich, Germany.

For more information visit: www.eos.info

Published in EOS

Advanced Laser Materials (ALM)  announced today that it has entered into a strategic partnership with Integra Services. ALM, a developer and manufacturer of materials for rapid manufacturing, has been affiliated with EOS, the world leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems, since 2009.  Under the agreement, ALM will act as a majority shareholder obtaining 51 percent of the Integra shares. This collaboration should offer immediate benefit to the laser sintering community in the US by offering a combination of excellent equipment service and materials application, support and development to users of all laser sintering platforms.

Johann Oberhofer, Chief Operating Officer of EOS emphasizes: “Two years ago we found a perfect partner in ALM. We anticipate that working with Integra will complement our existing capabilities: the provision of technology and support for customers who manufacture high quality parts – both in prototyping and manufacturing."

Donnie Vanelli, President of ALM, LLC adds: “The strategic partnership with EOS, has allowed both EOS and ALM to make a large step forward in the transition of laser-sintering from rapid prototyping to rapid manufacturing. ALM provides custom materials for the emerging rapid manufacturing area in partnership with EOS. The strategic partnership between Integra, ALM, and EOS will allow complete custom  digital manufacturing solutions for the industry, including integrated platforms, materials and services. The EOS Group will now have complete material and service packages for all Laser Sintering platforms in North America with a strong focus on materials development research and responsive service.

Lance Shanklin, President of Integra adds: “The collaboration with a strong partner like EOS will improve  our growth potential significantly for the future and open new opportunities to provide increased support to our customers.  Benefiting from EOS intellectual property portfolio, we can complement and expand our hardware, service, and material offerings."

For more information visit: www.alm-llc.com / www.integra-support.com / www.eos.info

At their booth in hall 4.1, booth F48, EOS, the leading supplier of laser-sintering systems, will be showcasing advanced e-Manufacturing solutions for dental models at this year’s International Dental Show (IDS) show taking place in Cologne/Germany March 22 till 26, 2011.

Dental models for the appropriate restoration of dental prostheses and for checking the occlusion have long been manufactured through time-consuming production and preparation of cast dental impressions. Currently, though, dental technology is undergoing a radical shift as well as a process of industrialization and automation for the manufacture of dental models.

Rise of new dental CAD/CAM applications enable digital manufacturing of dental models

The further development of dental CAD/CAM applications with new impression and intraoral scanners will make it possible to send high-quality data directly to the processing centre. The only thing missing would be a dental model for occlusion testing and post-processing, or a fixation device for use during veneering. Such a model can be laser-sintered on a FORMIGA P 100 from PA 2105, a top-quality plastic, on the basis of already available data. Consequently, laser-sintering provides a complete solution for the manufacture of dental prostheses.

It is already quite common for the patient’s oral situation to be assessed digitally by means of intraoral scanners or by means of model scanning. This affects important subsequent processing and production steps such as the production of dental restorations as well as dental models. This digital three dimensional data can be processed directly and without a moulding-induced loss in precision by means of metal laser-sintering, for example in order to produce dental crowns and bridges. A second set of data contains the digital description of the dental model, ready for polymer laser-sintering. Both of these forms of individualized series production are based on e-manufacturing via laser-sintering. Martin Bullemer, Business Development Manager Medical at EOS adds: “Laser-sintered dental models offer a whole range of advantages when compared to conventionally manufactured ones. The digital e-Manufacturing process ensures a high model precision for the precision of the prosthesis fit.”

Technological centrepiece of plastic dental e-Manufacturing: FORMIGA P 100

Polymer laser-sintering is an additive layer manufacturing method. To enable its use for manufacturing dental models, the three dimensional data is sliced into layers. Using these as a model, the system produces the model in layers by fusing plastic powder using a laser. The technological centrepiece of dental e-Manufacturing is the FORMIGA P 100 – the leading plastic laser-sintering system in the compact class. With an overall building volume of 200 mm x 250 mm x 330 mm the system can produce, for example in three stacked layers up to fifty single dental models within ten hours. Its economical and flexible design permits the system to be ideally integrated into dental lab workflows for a comparatively low investment cost. Operating this laser-sintering system requires personnel only for loading and unpacking the machine. As such, it is a very reliable process which at the same time helps to conserve resources through the reuse of powder not fused.

The laser-sintered dental model requires no manual finishing because no support structures are needed. At the same time it is a highly cost-efficient and time saving process due to the production of a hollow model and multilayer building. The FORMIGA P 100 produces a plastic model that is used both for checking prostheses quality, for veneering and production of dental prosthesis. Moreover, it is possible to generate models for analysis.

PA 2105: Coloured plastic material for series production

PA 2105 is a pigmented polyamide-12 powder for the manufacturing of laser-sintered dental models that are based on the colour of the plastics used in conventional manufacturing. The usual colour contrast with the dental prosthesis eases the veneering of the dental prostheses. At the same time, the high mechanical strength and thermal stability enable optimal fit control and veneering of the dental prostheses. The laser-sintered model can ensure abrasion resistance despite frequent prosthesis insertion and removal.

Bullemer concludes: “Thanks to this efficient production method – the dental model is ideally produced in parallel with the associated crown or bridge – the complete manufacturing process is shortened by an average of one working day.”

For more information visit: www.eos.info

Published in EOS

At this year’s LAB DAY Chicago (Feb. 25-26, Sheraton Chicago Hotel and Towers), EOS-Electro Optical Systems, the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems, is proud to present two clinics, titled “Producing Bridges, Copings, Implants and Models from CAD Data Via Laser-Sintering.” The sessions mark the first time at LAB DAY that EOS has presented clinics approved for 1.5 Scientific Certified Dental Technician (CDT) Credits. They will be held in Hospitality Suite 930 on Saturday, Feb. 26, from 8:30 a.m.-10 a.m. and again from 10:30 a.m.-noon.

The clinics will afford dental technicians the opportunity to learn about direct metal laser-sintering (DMLS) as a cost-saving, efficient alternative to traditional casting methods for copings, bridges, and implants. They will also explore plastics laser-sintering for modeling for, among other things, post-processing restorations. Thomas Thiel, Master Dental Technologist, will conduct the clinics.

Thiel, an EOS engineer, dental applications division, has previously worked in commercial laboratories specializing in crown and bridge, combined removable partial dentures, implants and ceramics. He has also worked as a trainer at Bremen-based BEGO, one of the leading dental companies worldwide, spearheading various dental clinics.

“Laser-sintering is gaining widespread acceptance as a manufacturing and modeling tool throughout the dental industry,” Thiel notes. “Our presentation of this accredited class is one more example of that, and will promote additional adoption by laboratories that wish to benefit from our mass customization and batch manufacturing capabilities.” In addition to biocompatible cobalt-chrome copings and bridges, EOS DMLS systems are used for titanium implants with controlled porous surfaces that promote osteointegration. These implants are currently CE-certified in Europe and are undergoing FDA approval in the USA.  

An additive manufacturing technology, laser-sintering uses CAD and other 3D digital data to build parts layer-by-layer. DMLS equipment can run unattended to produce about 450 individually designed bridges and crowns for porcelain-fused-to-metal (PFM) restorations in 24 hours. In contrast, with the traditional lost-wax casting process, a dental technician can only produce about 20.

EOS will also showcase samples of dental products at its exhibit during LAB DAY.

Published in EOS

At this year’s American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons (AAOS) annual meeting, EOS, the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems, has a working direct metal laser-sintering system (DMLS) in operation at their booth (#2656) with a variety of plastic and metal medical devices on display. Parts exhibited include customized surgical drill guides reflecting patient-specific geometry, bone rasp samples, and prototype stainless steel surgical tools. The latest test results for customized PEEK implant manufacturing will be available. The show runs February 15-19 at the San Diego (California) Convention Center.

“Our offerings at the AAOS meeting demonstrate just how mature laser-sintering is now,” says Martin Bullemer, EOS manager for medical business development. “Metal and plastics laser-sintering have clearly become enabling technologies for medical products.” Bullemer will be available at the booth for interviews.

EOS plastic and metal laser-sintering systems allow medical designers to tailor parts specifically for doctors and patients using 3D data generated by MRI, CT, and/or CAD. Modern data preparation software in combination with laser-sintering can be used to create complex geometries, porous surfaces suitable for better osteointegration or lightweight structures to promote better patient comfort.

Other EOS-related activities at the AAOS meeting include:

* Morris Technologies Inc., exhibiting in Booth #2655 across the aisle from EOS, announced that, in collaboration with Kapstone Medical, they will soon file with the FDA for 510(k) pre-market notification for the first DMLS-generated titanium implant.

Says Chuck Hansford, Morris vice president of the medical business unit, “We are in the final mechanical and biocompatible testing stages with a Ti 64 ELI implant made with material from EOS. We hope to submit our application before the end of the first quarter of this year.” For more information, go to www.morristech.com

* WITHIN Technologies Ltd will be visiting the show. Their FEA/CAD optimization software works in tandem with plastic and metal laser-sintering systems, such as those from EOS, to create strong, lightweight parts including innovative lattice structures.

“Additive manufacturing provides the design freedom to create components you can’t produce any other way,” says WITHIN’s Dr. Sia H. Mahdavi. “Much as CAD systems have manufacturability aids developed specifically for processes such as injection molding and casting, our software identifies the optimum solution to each design challenge and helps manufacturers maximize what laser-sintering machines do best.”  To learn more, go to www.within-lab.com

About EOS

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser-sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost-effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser-sintering accelerates product development and optimizes production processes. EOS completed its business year 2009/2010 with revenues of 64 million Euros. The company employs 300 people worldwide, 250 of them in Krailling near Munich, Germany. For more information visit www.eos.info

Published in EOS

The first PEEK craniofacial test implants to be produced with laser-sintering will be presented by EOS, the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems, at the co-located Pacific Design & Manufacturing/MD&M West shows at the Anaheim, California Convention Center, February 8-10, 2011.

EOS’ Collaborative Projects Coordinator, Joerg Lenz, will deliver a previously unpublished technical paper on the results of a European Union-funded project called Custom-IMD (www.customimd.eu) on plastic implants, titled “Laser Sintering of PEEK,” during afternoon Session 303 on Wednesday, February 9th.  The test implants were fabricated in Germany using the EOSINT P 800 system (the first laser-sintering system worldwide operating at up to 385 degrees C for processing high-performance polymers). The implants will be on display at EOS booth #3600 after Lenz’s presentation.

High-temperature, biocompatible PEEK (Polyaryletherketone) material is increasingly being used as an alternative to titanium for craniofacial implants (produced from CT-scan geometry) for patients with head injuries or congenital deformities. Lenz’s paper documents the first validated in vivo

Conventional manufacturing technology can’t produce patient-customized craniofacial implants, either titanium or PEEK, as economically or in as short a time span as laser-sintering,” says Lenz. “What’s more, EOS technology has enabled us to develop a specific geometry that can only be realized using additive manufacturing. This new design incorporates a mesh scaffold that promotes improved bone growth and optimizes infiltration with a hydroxyapatite-filled, bio-absorbable polymer.”  The implants displayed at the EOS booth will include one filled with the polymer.

Lenz serves on a number of international standardization organizations, including ASTM Committee F42 on additive manufacturing technologies. PEEK-implant animal studies continue through the EU-funded project, and human trials are planned for the future. The current implant was designed by a team at AZM (the University Hospital Maastricht, The Netherlands) headed by Dr. Jules Poukens. A patent for the network of holes in the unique mesh scaffold has been applied for.

Scott Killian of Royal Engineered Composites, the first American user of the P 800, will also be at the EOS booth to discuss his company’s use of the machine and show sample geometries of PEEK medical and aerospace parts. There will be a working FORMIGA P 100 laser-sintering system at the booth as well as metal parts produced with direct metal laser-sintering (DMLS).  Lenz and Killian are both available for interviews.

About EOS

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser-sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost-effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser-sintering accelerates product development and optimizes production processes. EOS completed its business year 2009/2010 with revenues of 64 million Euros. The company employs 300 people worldwide, 250 of them in Krailling near Munich, Germany. For more information visit www.eos.info

Published in EOS

This year’s Wohlers Report on the state of the additive manufacturing (AM) industry includes a striking statistic: When global service providers were asked which technology they would most likely add, the most popular response was laser-sintering from EOS, followed by PolyJet from Objet and FDM from Stratasys, according to (see chart below).

For 15 years, Wohlers Associates has compiled an annual comprehensive report on the advances in additive manufacturing technologies and applications. The 2010 report includes field information that provides an extensive overview of the current state of the industry. “We sent our survey to 150 service providers from around the world,” said Terry Wohlers, principal consultant and president of Wohlers Associates. “One of the questions we asked was, ‘If you were going to add a new AM technology, which one would you most likely acquire?’ We gave them 21 systems to choose from, plus an “Other” option. Sixty-four organizations from 18 countries—responded, and the data revealed that 40.4 percent of those chose laser-sintering from EOS over everything else.”

Chuck Alexander, Director of Additive Manufacturing at Solid Concepts (Valencia, CA), suggests several possible reasons for the survey results. “We’ve seen firsthand the accuracy, reliability and minimal downtime of EOS laser-sintering systems,” he says. “The company’s wide range of plastic and metal materials may also appeal to service bureaus looking to expand what they offer customers.”

About Wohlers Associates

Wohlers Associates, Inc. is a 24-year old independent consulting firm in Fort Collins, Colorado. The company provides technical and strategic consulting on the new developments and trends in rapid product development and additive manufacturing. Much of this guidance deals with industrial applications, hidden costs, what works and what does not, industry trends, and growth forecasts. The company also assists with acquisitions, partnerships, product positioning, competitive issues, investment, and whether to enter a particular market segment. The company's past work has involved more than 160 client organizations in 22 countries around the world.

About EOS

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser-sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost-effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser-sintering accelerates product development and optimizes production processes. EOS completed its business year 2009/2010 with revenues of 64 million Euros. The company employs 300 people worldwide, 250 of them in Krailling near Munich, Germany. For more information visit www.eos.info

Contact
EOS GmbH Electro Optical Systems
Claudia Jordan
Group Manager Marketing Communications
Phone: +49 89 893 36 134
Fax: +49 89 893 36 284
e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Published in EOS

EOS, the world leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems, once again presents its e-Manufacturing solutions at EuroMold in Frankfurt. EOS showcases the range of its portfolio with two operating systems at the booth - an EOSINT P 395 for plastic laser-sintering and the unveiling of the enhanced Direct Metal Laser Sintering (DMLS) solution, the EOSINT M 280. In addition, EOS introduces a series of new plastic and metal materials, which confirms, once more, the quality leadership role of EOS. Based on the materials, completely new fields of application can be developed, costs can be reduced and customer requirements can be served in an ideal way.

Peter Klink, Executive Vice President Global Sales at EOS, adds: "Very often, the development of new materials is based on a close dialogue with our customers. These developments help to solve their challenges in production while reducing production costs. In addition, these new materials open up completely new fields of application." For example, at EuroMold, EOS introduces a new metal material to the market, EOS NickelAlloy IN625.  For plastic, EOS debuts two new materials: PrimePart FR (PA 2241 FR) and PrimePart ST (PEBA 2301).

Versatile metal material: EOS NickelAlloy IN625

The new material EOS NickelAlloy IN625 is very versatile. Its ideal material properties, such as its high tensile strength, its excellent processability and its eminent and uniform corrosion resistance, make it ideally suited for use in aerospace, chemical, motor sport and marine industry applications.

In fact, first applications show promising results: Greg Morris, CEO of Morris Technologies, notes: “We are using IN625 with DMLS to build complex aerospace parts for high-temperature and high-strength applications. The process achieves material properties that are comparable to wrought metals and far exceed casting.  For prototyping projects, DMLS saves our customers weeks and often thousands of dollars compared with traditional methodologies.”

Flame-retardant material: PrimePart FR (PA 2241 FR)

PrimePart FR (PA 2241 FR) is a new, flame-retardant material that is particularly suitable for applications in the aerospace industry. This material, based on PA 12 polyamide, has an 11 percent elongation at break, which is significantly higher than its predecessor material PA 2210FR. Also, due to its better refresh rate, PrimePart FR offers increased economic and ecological benefits.

Flexible with unique material properties: PrimePart ST (PEBA 2301)

PrimePart ST is a flexible elastomeric material, offering a wide-range of mechanical properties depending on the laser-exposure strategy selected. Via the process control, the material can be converted into a hard- or a soft-type component. The material has an excellent refresh rate making it a valid ecological alternative compared to conventional flexible materials for laser-sintering. Due to its resilience, PrimePart ST opens up new fields of application, such as flexible fasteners, seals or buffers.

Part Property Management (PPM): Standards for e-Manufacturing

EuroMold 2010 marks the one year anniversary of the successful launch of the EOS Part Property Management (PPM). The PPM offers major advantages for e-Manufacturing by providing standards to ensure reliable and repeatable quality in laser-sintering. At any time, the designer has access to standardized property profiles and corresponding material properties and, therefore, the user-based decision-making and production processes become more efficient and transparent.  As a result, builds are more easily repeatable.

Based on increasingly automated data processing and a more flexible production planning in manufacturing, the PPM results in an increased efficiency and reduced costs, at the same time allowing for optimized and transparent quality assurance processes. As such, laser-sintering becomes a competitive and cost-effective manufacturing method for plastic and metal parts. The PPM is further evolving, resulting in the possibility of integrating customer-specific process parameters into the concept in the future.

About EOS

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser-sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser-sintering accelerates product development and optimizes production processes. EOS completed its business year 2009/2010 with revenues of 64 million Euros. The company employs 300 people worldwide, 250 of them in Krailling near Munich, Germany. For more information visit www.eos.info.

Pictures (under “Press Material”) and further information (under “Press Releases”) you find under http://www.eos.info/en/news-events.html

Contact
EOS Electro Optical Systems GmbH
Claudia Jordan
Group Manager Marketing Communications
Phone: +49 89 893 36 134
Fax: +49 89 893 36 284
e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Published in EOS

EOS, world leading manufacturer of laser-sinter systems, will be showcasing its solution portfolio again at this year’s EuroMold (December 1 - 4, 2010) in hall 11, booth C08. With the EOSINT M 280, EOS this year launches a further improved version of its market leading additive manufacturing systems for metals. Peter Klink, Executive Vice President Global Sales at EOS, states: „The new system sets new standards in terms of part quality and reproducibility, at the same time improving cost-effectiveness and user-friendliness. The EOSINT M 280 adopts all features and advantages of the well-established EOSINT M 270 system, and makes it even more attractive for a wide range of demanding applications including tooling and series production.“

EOS pioneered direct additive manufacturing of metals in 1995 with the introduction of the EOSINT M 250 system. Since then EOS has continuously updated and further developed this product line. The EOSINT M 270 is in the meantime by far the best-selling metal additive manufacturing system and has gained a strong reputation for producing best quality parts. To date EOS has sold about 270 metal systems. Numerous users are already using the EOSINT M 270 for series production in a variety of fields, including medical products and tooling. Many other users are actively qualifying the technology for their production. Based on feedback from many of these customers as well as its own innovative ideas, EOS has now further significantly developed the technology with its EOSINT M 280.

400 Watt laser for increased build speed and productivity

The new system EOSINT M 280 is available with either the same 200 Watt fibre laser which was pioneered by EOS with the EOSINT M 270, or with a 400 Watt fibre laser option. This higher power laser can melt more metal powder per second, thus achieving shorter build times and higher system productivity. For example, an injection moulding core will be displayed at EuroMold which was built in less than half the time compared to EOSINT M 270.

Especially for heavy use in a manufacturing environment, this enables significantly reduced costs-per-part, thereby increasing the competitiveness of laser-sintering compared to other technologies and opening up new viable application areas.

Increased build height expands applications range

Another improvement of the EOSINT M 280 compared to its predecessor is the increase of the maximum building height up to 325 mm. This enables taller parts to be placed in the process chamber, again expanding the application areas. This is particularly interesting for hybrid part building, a concept which EOS introduced in the 1990s for prototype tooling. In the hybrid process, complex parts are produced by building additional material on top of a prefabricated part.

Optimized gas management: robust process for increased reproducibility

Based on extensive process investigations and supported by fluid dynamics simulations, EOS has optimized the gas management system of the EOSINT M 280. A high-velocity laminar flow of protective gas across the entire build area, combined with the high-capacity recirculating filter system, ensures even more uniform process conditions. As a result, stable melting behaviour is ensured even over long periods of time and with higher laser power. This results in further improved reproducibility of the part properties. The system therefore offers an excellent platform for further material and process developments. It also supports processes both under nitrogen gas atmosphere, created by compressed air via an integrated nitrogen generator, as well as under argon gas. Moreover, further improvements in the gas management system enable a reduction of the gas consumption and a prolonged filter lifetime, which further improve the cost-effectiveness and user-friendliness of the system.

Part Property Management based on thorough process development

Based on intensive process and application developments, EOS has established high standards in recent years. The new EOSINT M 280 builds on the Part Property Management concept, which was introduced at last year’s EuroMold and emphasizes the quality leadership of EOS. It enables a standardisation und comparability of building processes, based on the so-called Part Property Profiles (PPP). By ensuring a consistent quality assurance along the entire process chain, EOS enables machine users to reliably produce parts based on defined material and part properties.

The EOSINT M 280 supports all the materials of its predecessor, with the same or with optimized parameter sets. Currently, EOS offers ten series materials, including the most recent material EOS NickelAlloy IN625. For the 400 Watt option new, faster parameter sets with corresponding Part Property Profiles will be introduced. Customers can either use the pre-qualified EOS parameter sets or develop and modify their own.

Further system improvements

As with previous models, the system configuration can be adapted to different customer needs through a variety of options and accessories. The so-called Laser Power Monitoring (LPM) monitors the laser power during the building process and reports the compliance with the specifications or warns of any deviations. With the base module of the EOSTATE 1.2 software the machine status can be monitored. Additional EOSTATE modules Quality Assurance, Controlling and MPM (Machine Park Management) are also available. They allow a statistical overview of the built jobs and parts over freely selectable periods of time. Integrated Process Chain Management (IPCM) modules offer optimized powder and part handling, thus ensuring an increased productivity, quality and usability. These can be added at any time. In addition, EOS plans to introduce an optional glove box to enable the parts to be freed from powder inside a closed process chamber environment.

About EOS

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser-sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser-sintering accelerates product development and optimizes production processes. EOS completed its business year 2009/2010 with revenues of 64 million Euros. The company employs 300 people worldwide, 250 of them in Krailling near Munich, Germany. For more information visit www.eos.info.

Published in EOS

EOS, the world leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems, once again presents its e-Manufacturing solutions at EuroMold in Frankfurt. EOS illustrates the range of its portfolio with metal and plastic laser-sintering systems operating in the new hall 11, booth C08. With the introduction of a further improved system and new metal materials, the company is responding to the requirements of the market by providing solutions that increase productivity and improve efficiency and process quality, especially in the field of series production where the market demands quality- and cost-effective solutions.

“At EuroMold, EOS’ introduction of an enhanced system for Direct Metal Laser-Sintering (DMLS) sets new standards in terms of part quality and repeatability, while providing a higher cost efficiency and improved usability,” says Peter Klink, Executive Vice President Global Sales at EOS.

"At the same time, the debut of new EOS materials further expands our quality leadership function. Very often, the development of these materials is based on a dialogue with our customers. Together we can solve their challenges in production. In addition, tthese new materials open up completely new fields of application,” adds Klink.

For metal materials, EOS presents EOS NickelAlloy IN625. Inconel 625 is particularly used in the aerospace industry. EOS also introduces two new plastic materials: Prime Part FR (PA 2241 FR) - a new, non-flammable material, especially for the aerospace industry - and PrimePart ST (PEBA 2301) – a flexible plastic, that, due to its special material properties, creates unlimited applications.

Additionally, EOS Part Property Profiles (PPP) for standardized and comparable quality of e-Manufacturing in the plastics sector is successfully used in production since last year’s announcement at EuroMold 2009. Now, in 2010, the first PPPs are available for the metal sector. In addition, EOS will further develop the appropriate concept of Part Property Management (PPM).

We kindly invite you to the EOS press conference on Dec. 1, 2010 at 14.00 h on the EOS boothwww.eos.info/interview. If you wish to arrange an interview with EOS at EuroMold 2010 please arrange an appointment in advance with Claudia Jordan (see contact details below).

About EOS

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser-sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser-sintering accelerates product development and optimizes production processes. EOS completed its business year 2008/2009 with revenues of approximately 60 million Euros. The company employs 300 people worldwide, 250 of them in Krailling near Munich, Germany. For more information visit www.eos.info.

Contact:
EOS Electro Optical Systems GmbH
Claudia Jordan
Group Manager Marketing Communications
Phone: +49 89 893 36 134
Fax: +49 89 893 36 284
e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Published in EOS

As of October 4, 2010 EOS, the world leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems, opens up a new office in Gothenburg, Sweden and appointed Anders Rydén as the new EOS Regional Manager for the Nordic and Baltic region. Operating from the Chalmers Innovation Business Park located in Gothenburg, EOS Nordic and Anders Rydén represent EOS in Scandinavia, Finland and the Baltic markets. EOS Nordic and Baltic also provides Field Service by 3 engineers with up to 10 years of experience in serving EOS equipment.

e-Manufacturing with laser-sintering is currently revolutionizing manufacturing processes. It enables Design Driven Manufacturing which adds flexibility to both product development and manufacturing. Designers can produce geometries that, up until now, were impossible to build or only at tremendous costs and it enables a tool-free production. This can help clients to secure a competitive advantage in many industries because the technology meets their most demanding challenges, such as the need for complex, high value products, a need to customize, ever shortening product life cycles and customer demands that are hard to anticipate. As such, the EOS technology already meets the complex and ever growing demands from industries such as medical (and dental in particular), aerospace, automotive, tooling, to name but a few.

EOS Nordic AB will host an Open Day on the 19th/20th October in the premises of the new subsidiary. Customers and prospects are cordially invited to visit the new subsidiary in observance of this event and to get an update about the latest developments at and market segments of EOS. Please use the registration form as follows: http://www.eos.info/news-events/registration-eos-nordic.html

The contact details of this new EOS office are as follows:

EOS Electro Optical Systems Nordic AB
Anders Rydén
Regional Manager Nordic and Baltic
Stena Center 1 C
41292 Gothenburg
Sweden
Tel.: (+46) 31 760 46 40
Fax: (+46) 31 772 80 88
Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Markus Glasser, Regional Director Export Business states: “With the new office established under Ander’s lead EOS will ensure to operate as close to the local client as possible. In addition, we see a tremendous market potential in these regions and are confident that this local presence will help us to grow our business here.”

Anders Rydén, who contributes extensive experience within product planning, product development, marketing and sales of advanced 3D CAD solutions into complex client organizations, adds: “I am very happy to be on board at such an innovative company and accept the challenge to identify, grow and maintain a profitable sales network for the regions under my responsibility. I personally and we at EOS believe that the laser-sintering technology does enable a design driven manufacturing and that it can facilitate paradigm shifts in manufacturing in a lot of industries. Now it will be my duty to explain to these communities which benefits the technology can offer to them.”

We also kindly invite you to visit us on K-fair (Oct. 27 – Nov. 3, 2010) in Dusseldorf, Germany. You find us in hall 2, booth #E23. If you are interested in conducting an interview on the booth, feel free to contact Claudia Jordan (details below).

About EOS

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser-sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost-effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser-sintering accelerates product development and optimizes production processes. EOS completed its business year 2008/2009 with revenues of approximately 60 million Euros. The company employs 300 people worldwide, 250 of them in Krailling near Munich, Germany. For more information, please visit www.eos.info.

Contacts:

EOS GmbH Electro Optical Systems
Claudia Jordan
Group Manager Marketing Communications
Tel.: (+49) 89 893 36 134
Fax: (+49) 89 893 36 284
Email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Published in EOS

At the International K Trade Fair for the plastics and rubber industry (Oct. 27 – Nov. 3, 2010, Düsseldorf), EOS will showcase their e-Manufacturing solutions at a joint booth with LBC and Materialise (Hall 2, Booth 2E23). EOS will demonstrate the extent of its portfolio with two laser-sintering systems at the booth—the EOSINT M 270 for metals and the FORMIGA P 100 for plastics.

Peter Klink, Executive Vice President Sales at EOS, says: "As a solution provider, at the K Fair we will showcase trendsetting approaches for serial tooling, such as conformal cooling channels. Moreover, we will present a product range that reflects the strengths of our technology for all batch sizes, showing how the design determines the production process (Design Driven Manufacturing); how functional integration enables design freedom and cost reduction; and how the ability to design and manufacture highly individualized products promote the development of new business areas."

Tooling: significantly reducing cycle times, providing improved part quality and achieving significant cost savings

Current injection-moulding processes can be improved significantly with EOS’ optimized cooling innovations. During production, component-specific conformal cooling channels are directly integrated into a tooling insert. These channels provide extremely efficient cooling, reducing the cycle time dramatically and creating several obvious advantages, among them better quality parts in shorter production times. Conformal cooling provides lower per-unit costs and, with regard to sustainability, lower energy consumption per product unit.

Ralph Mayer, CEO of LaserBearbeitungsCenter (LBC), adds: "EOS technology is on a fast track to become the reference technology for tooling. We have been using it successfully for years. The basis for optimized tools is the design layout and engineering of the entire tool. This is of great importance particularly for manufacturing serial tools, where it provides us and our customers with a competitive advantage. We make sure that the added value stays with the mould-maker and the cost of our services are kept as low as possible."

Individualized end products and sophisticated functional integration

Regardless of market segment, there is currently a demand for ever-increasing product customization. This is especially true for the medical industry. EOS e-Manufacturing partner Materialise produces patient-specific drill guides for surgical procedures—for example, knee implants—with EOS layer-manufacturing technology. To ensure crucial precision and quality for surgical procedures, the following are required: a high repetitive accuracy of the manufacturing process, integrated software solutions for designing drill guides, and a proficient handling of customer-specific data and parts.

John Pauwels, Director of Operations at Materialise Software, comments: "Our goal is to provide an economically acceptable method for the production of customized surgical guides. For that reason, intensive pre-surgical planning is necessary, and a number of factors need to be considered and seamlessly combined, among them patient-specific anatomy, highly automated data handling and individual logistics. Most importantly, a procedure such as laser-sintering ensures the efficient production of customized components."

Energy-efficient process chains

EOS works with its customers to analyse the process chains of their products, including energy consumption. This involves both production and utilization phases (life cycle analysis). Current analyses suggest that energy savings can be created in the course of laser-sintering as well as later in the life cycle. Already, applications such as conformal cooling channels have shown a cycle time reduction of up to 60 percent, which promotes lower energy consumption.

High-quality plastic parts

Reliable part quality is crucial in choosing a manufacturing process. EOS monitors, supports and documents process assurance, part quality and traceability with its Integrated Quality Management System (IQMS). EOS then takes quality to the next level with its Part Property Management (PPM) concept. Based on the Part Property Profiles (PPP), EOS ensures standardization and comparability of building processes and results that provide designers and users with a reliable tool.

The quality of the finished, fully functional parts, as well as the productivity of the systems used, their high degree of automation, and the professional material handling and ergonomic peripherals make EOS’ laser-sintering technology an ideal production tool for economic, lot-oriented part production.

For an interview at the booth and/or press information, please contact Claudia Jordan (see contacts details below).

About the LaserBearbeitungsCenter (LBC)

Kornwestheim-based LBC makes the full scope of modern laser technologies available to its clients. With its know-how, especially in the mould-making sector, the company offers its services for a number of process chain steps: Engineering (simulation, design, design revision) of tools and tooling inserts; manufacturing via laser sintering of moulding blanks or moulds with optimized conformal cooling; 3D laser engraving for tools; and direct labelling of composites. LBC currently employs three EOSINT M270 systems and has a track record of more than six years of user experience in the field of additive production.

About Materialise

With its headquarters in Leuven, Belgium and branches all over the world, the Materialise Group is best known for its activities in the field of rapid industrial and medical prototyping. Apart from having the largest capacity of rapid prototyping equipment in Europe, Materialise enjoys a worldwide reputation as provider of innovative software solutions. As such, Materialise has acquired the position of market leader for 3D printing and Digital CAD software in addition to being a major player in medical and dental image processing and surgery simulation. Moreover, through its unique .MGX by Materialise division for design products, Materialise has opened the market for customized Rapid Manufacturing. The customer base includes all large companies in the automotive, consumer electronics and consumables sectors. Its medical and dental products are used worldwide by famous hospitals, research institutes and clinicians. Unique design shops all over the world rely on .MGX by Materialise. The group has several subsidiaries in Europe, Asia and the USA, and employs over 800 people in its 4 divisions.

About EOS

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser-sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost-effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser-sintering accelerates product development and optimizes production processes. EOS completed its business year 2008/2009 with revenues of 60 million Euros. The company employs 300 people worldwide, 250 of them in Krailling near Munich, Germany. For more information visit www.eos.info

Contacts:

EOS Electro Optical Systems GmbH
Claudia Jordan
Group Manager Marketing Communications
Tel.: 089 893 36 134
E-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Published in EOS

GF AgieCharmilles has partnered with EOS and will demonstrate a nearly automatic process chain for creating injection and blow mold tooling with conformal cooling channels. The two companies will conduct the demonstration at IMTS 2010 in the GF AgieCharmilles booth #S-8754.

This breakthrough manufacturing process chain is one that runs virtually unbroken from design to finished product. Machines used in the process are networked together and operate from the same 3D CAD model data from start-to-finish to increase accuracy and reduce set-up times.

“Our technologies are a perfect fit for moldmaking,” says Gisbert Ledvon, Business Development Manager at GF AgieCharmilles U.S., “and the transfer between our systems is unique.”

During the demonstration, an EOSINT M 270 direct metal laser-sintering (DMLS) system will create a steel mold for a plastic, blow-molded golf ball, complete with conformal cooling channels and the fixturing needed for all successive stages of machining. This mold will then move through a secondary process chain that includes a GF AgieCharmilles HSM 400U LP high-speed milling machine, an FO 350MS die sinking EDM, and a Cut20P wire EDM. The wire EDM cuts off the fixturing, the HSM 400ULP will cut the parting lines for a flash-free (no leakage) surface, and leave the mold ready for production use.

A significant advantage of DMLS is that it produces a near-net part, in one operation, that is ready for secondary finishing. Single fixturing is then used for all secondary operations to reduce manual benchworking and generate surface finishes accurate to within three to five microns. The process minimizes scrap by eliminating many of the progressive operations involved in subtractive toolmaking processes that start with a block of raw material.

“By joining with EOS, we have established a complete process chain, available globally, that provides the same high accuracy GF AgieCharmilles is known for, and creates tools with a minimum of oversight and greatly reduced material waste, manufacturing time, and manual labor,” says Ledvon. “It’s better for the environment, and it’s excellent for the bottom line. The conformal-cooled molds we can manufacture offer enormous advantages.”

Conformal-cooled molds are already in use and have enabled high-end manufacturers to reduce part-production cycle times 17 to 20 percent and, in some cases, as high as 45 percent. The DMLS-manufactured molds improve product quality and promote longer tool life, and the optimized cooling increases the efficiency of the whole molding process as well. For large-volume production, the resulting time and cost savings—as well as carbon footprint reduction—are considerable.

“We’ve documented years of success stories from customers who benefited by using DMLS to create molds that employ conformal cooling channels,” says Andy Snow, Regional Sales Director EOS of North America. “Our partnership with one of the world’s leading suppliers of toolmaking equipment demonstrates how accepted these molds have become, and it enables manufacturers with high-volume injection and blow molding to implement our technology and reap substantial time and cost savings.”

GF AgieCharmilles and EOS will also hold a joint press conference Tuesday, September 13, 2010 at 8:30am in room S-501A at IMTS.

About GF AgieCharmilles

GF AgieCharmilles is the North American leading supplier of laser ablation centers, wire EDM, CNC and manual diesinking systems and high speed/performance and 5-axis CNC milling machines. For more information on the company's products and services, contact Gisbert Ledvon, GF AgieCharmilles, 560 Bond St., Lincolnshire, IL 60069-4224, Tel: 1-800-CTC-1EDM. This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , Fax: 847-913-5340, or visit www.gfac.com/us.

About EOS

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser-sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost-effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser-sintering accelerates product development and optimizes production processes. EOS completed its business year 2008/2009 with revenues of 60 million Euros. The company employs 300 people worldwide, 250 of them in Krailling near Munich, Germany. For more information visit www.eos.info.

Contacts:

GF AgieCharmilles
Gisbert Ledvon
Business Development Manager
847.913.5300

dgs Marketing Engineers®
Chuck Bates  317.813.2230
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Claudia Jordan
Group Manager Marketing Communications
Phone: +011 49 89 893 36 134
Fax: +011 49 89 893 36 284
e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Parker Group (editorial contact, US)
Nick O’Donohoe
Tel.: +1 401 272 1510
e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Published in EOS

Unique, complex aircraft components, many of them impossible to create using traditional manufacturing processes, will be on display at EOS booth #3407 at the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI) Unmanned Systems North America exhibition (August 24-27, Denver, Co.). Udo Behrendt, Key Account Manager Aerospace at EOS, the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems, will be providing technical background about aerospace applications during the show.

EOS customer Northwest UAV Propulsion Systems (NWUAV) is exhibiting a FORMIGA P 100 plastic laser-sintering system from EOS, as well as a complete unmanned vehicle, at booth #1214. Northwest Rapid Manufacturing, part of the Northwest UAV family of companies, manufactures production parts and prototypes for NWUAV using its EOSINT P 390 and P 730 equipment.  Together, the companies provide parts and assemblies including engine and cooling components for unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) made by Insitu, Inc., and others. These components are stable in hot environments and are tough, pliable, and robust in harsh conditions such as exposure to fuel.

“Manufacturers of UAVs face stringent demands, both for part requirements and delivery schedules,” says Alexander Dick, VP of Laser-Sintering Operations at Northwest Rapid. “EOS laser-sintering equipment enables us to meet tight tolerances, ensure component strength and performance, and deliver parts on or before deadlines.” Northwest UAV is an active member of the AUVSI Cascade Chapter, serving as a sponsor and providing two chapter officers in 2010.

“The huge growth of the unmanned-systems market has triggered a wave of innovative and unique designs,” says EOS’ Behrendt. “Our customers are using metal and plastics laser-sintering to push the boundaries of those designs.”

Other EOS customers at the show are Paramount PDS (Booth #1618), who will exhibit plastic UAV parts created with an EOSINT P 730; Morris Technologies, Inc., (Booth #2729), who will display titanium aerospace components and prototypes created with direct metal laser-sintering (DMLS); and Solid Concepts (Booth #1226), who is featuring SLS-manufactured flight structures for Aerotonomy’s new Cruise-Efficient ESTOL research aircraft. In addition to the aircraft’s form-fitted seven-gallon fuel tank, all of the primary structures that enable the advanced high-lift technologies such as leading-edge blowing, circulation-control flaps, and airflow plenums were manufactured with EOS laser sintering equipment. Solid Concepts manufactures plastic laser-sintered aerospace parts from a wide range of applications and materials.

Plastic and metal laser-sintering are already widespread in UAV and other aerospace applications. In addition to producing durable, lightweight and complex parts, the technology requires no tooling, thereby reducing upfront times and costs and making re-designs and customization easy and affordable.

“On any given UAV system, once its customer and field use changes, the only features that stay the same may be the frame and most of the fuselage,” says Frederick Claus, Business Development Manager at Solid Concepts. “The manufacturing flexibility and speed of laser-sintering have proved their worth in this industry time and again.”

Among the materials currently available for laser-sintering of UAV components are:

* Several polyamides (including a flame-retardant material)
* EOS PEEK HP3 (a high-temperature thermoplastic polymer)
* Titanium
* Cobalt chrome
* IN718 (a nickel-chromium super alloy)

Additional materials for UAV and other aerospace applications are in development.

About Unmanned Systems North America 2010

AUVSI’s Unmanned Systems North America 2010 is the premiere forum for reviewing, assessing and discussing the successes and shortcomings of current unmanned systems. The conference, with an expected record turnout, will bring together the key leaders and decision-makers in the industry. Officials from government and user organizations around the world will be in attendance and participating in the symposium program. The event is being held August 24-27 at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver, Colorado. For more information, go to http://symposium.auvsi.org/auvsi10/public/content.aspx?ID=116&sortMenu=107001

About EOS

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser-sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost-effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser-sintering accelerates product development and optimizes production processes. EOS completed its business year 2008/2009 with revenues of 60 million Euros. The company employs 300 people worldwide, 250 of them in Krailling near Munich, Germany. For more information visit www.eos.info

Contacts:

Claudia Jordan
Group Manager Marketing Communications
Phone: +011 49 89 893 36 134
Fax: +011 49 89 893 36 284
e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Parker Group (editorial contact, US)
Nick O’Donohoe
Tel.: +1 401 272 1510
e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Published in EOS

EOS, the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering equipment, has launched the EOS Quality Standard, an initiative of the EOS e-Manufacturing partner program that is open to and beneficial for all customers. The purpose of this program is to define a package of requirements that guarantees the high quality of e-Manufacturing parts and services. The procedures for this standard are to be integrated into customers’ ISO 9001 quality management systems.

“The EOS Quality Standard is a great step forward in establishing best practices for end users and demonstrates EOS’ leadership in the market,” says  Eli Liechty, Leader Operations/Manufacturing RMM at Morris Technologies, Inc. “It highlights the importance of controlling the entire additive manufacturing supply chain, ranging from system maintenance, to operator training, material qualification, and critical system parameters.  This standard will supplement our international ISO: 9001 and industry-specific AS9100 and ISO: 13485 quality systems, and Morris Technologies is pleased to be one of the early adopters implementing this new initiative.”

Quality Assurance Procedure

To assure quality, special measures have to be implemented in each customer’s operation. The e-Manufacturing provider must have implemented a quality management system (QMS) with a valid certification according to ISO 9001, and must define and implement quality assurance procedures for the production and supply of laser-sintered parts within that QMS.

Qualification and responsibilities

There are five types of qualifications that a customer has to integrate into the QMS. Personnel qualification is one factor. For example, the e-Manufacturing provider’s staff is expected to have the knowledge and skills for the relevant technology. The provider also must assure machine status according to quality procedures. This status is to be specified and documented, regular maintenance has to be done, and the environmental conditions the machine is operating in must conform to the defined EOS Installation Requirements.

Secondly, if the customer uses a material that has been released by EOS for the relevant technology, then EOS provides them with the appropriate set of procedures to meet the criteria of the standard. In that case, the third criterion – using the right parameter sets – is met by deploying the system-specific EOS parameter set and powder material. The fourth element of the quality standard ensures the conformity of part design with the relevant design rules.

Last but not least, certain demands have to be met concerning data preparation and post-processing. These should be in accordance with recommendations published by EOS for the relevant machine and powder material. Otherwise the customer needs to specify what procedure has been used and why, or how that procedure has been qualified.

With this quality standard, and its recently presented Part Property Profiles, EOS continues expanding the use of its e-Manufacturing technologies in the production world.

The provider of any parts or services supplied with reference to this quality standard is solely responsible for the fulfilment of the requirements and for any information provided in relation to those parts or services.

“Customers of an entity that follows the EOS quality standard can expect consistent part quality from their e-Manufacturing provider. The standard allows them to distinguish between providers by a reference to an independent standard,” says Peter Klink, Executive Vice President Sales & Support.

For more information on the EOS Quality Standard please visit our website www.eos.info under “About EOS”, then choose “Quality Standard”.

About EOS

EOS was founded in 1989 and is today the world-leading manufacturer of laser-sintering systems. Laser-sintering is the key technology for e-Manufacturing, the fast, flexible and cost-effective production of products, patterns and tools. The technology manufactures parts for every phase of the product life cycle, directly from electronic data. Laser-sintering accelerates product development and optimizes production processes. EOS completed its business year 2008/2009 with revenues of 60 million Euros. The company employs 300 people worldwide, 250 of them in Krailling near Munich, Germany. For more information visit www.eos.info

Contacts:

EOS Electro Optical Systems
Claudia Jordan
Group Manager Marketing Communications
Phone: +49 89 893 36 134
Fax: +49 89 893 36 284
e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it    

Parker Group (editorial contact, US)
Nick O’Donohoe
Tel.: +1 401 272 1510
e-mail: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Published in EOS
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