EOS, a leading technology supplier in the field of industrial 3D printing of metals and polymers, and German start-up Additive Works announce their close collaboration to enhance the additive manufacturing (AM) process with metal materials.
The company’s focus their cooperation on the simulation based pre-processing software Amphyon: A solution which simulates the AM building process before it actually takes place, highlighting and optimizing possible problematic areas of the part to be build. Thanks to the user-friendly and easy to use software, shape accuracy, surface quality as well as build productivity and stability can be increased. Thanks to this, companies can save time and costs in developing additively manufactured components.
Dr. Nils Keller, CEO, Additive Works states: “Although AM-technology itself is mature, it can be difficult to predict if a part will be 3D printed as expected especially for inexperienced users. So when a part is manufactured with issues, e.g. surface defects, it means a waste of machine time and material costs. An answer to this challenge is Amphyon.” And further: “Using simulation software is standard when it comes to conventional manufacturing methods. With Amphyon, simulation now also becomes a solution for additive manufacturing, underlining the increased use and changing requirements of industrial 3D printing for serial production.”
Experience the part virtually before the build
Amphyon helps to predict possible build job challenges and automates the know-how based pre-processing steps. This way companies can optimize their parts in forefront, minimize the risk of flaws but benefit from a successful build process. To enable an easy use, Amphyon orients all steps along the “ASAP” principle (Assessment –Simulation – Adaption – Process), a new workflow for Direct Metal Laser Sintering job preparation. Consisting of a couple of different software modules, Amphyon addresses the application areas part assessment, support optimization and process simulation.
On the assessment stage, an examiner module evaluates the geometry of the part and assesses all possible build-up orientations. Doing this manually can be challenging as the ideal orientation always depends on the application in terms of build time, support volume, post processing efforts and part deformation. Thanks to the Amphyon design evaluation, the software automatically finds the best part orientation in the build chamber of the 3D printing system.
On the simulation stage, there are two modules available: The Support module, which is in a beta phase at present, and the Mechanical Process Simulation (MPS) module. With the Support module, optimized support structures can be generated automatically. These structures support the part on the build platform and define the process results. Amphyon’s innovative optimization routines adapt the support perforation as well as the interfaces between part and support based on the calculated process loads. Thereby, not only time and costs of manual support generation can be saved, but also support material can be saved and process stability is increased, avoiding costly build fails. The MPS module offers users a fast and intuitive way to simulate process mechanics and to calculate distortions. Such distortions can be compensated easily by the software by exporting and building a “pre-deformed” STL file. In the end the simulation capabilities of Amphyon help to assure process stability and design accuracy of the application manufactured.
To ensure an easy and accurate simulation, key EOS metal materials are integrated into Amphyon software and calibrated with regard to their material properties. The goal is to calibrate and implement all metal materials from EOS in the future.
Partnering to streamline the 3D printing process
Martin Steuer, Head of Product Management Software and Services at EOS says: “While the vast majority of the public thinks that additive manufacturing allows for the creation of three dimensional objects from a digital design by just clicking a button, users of the technology know that the reality is more complex. United by the mission to make Industrial 3D printing even more intuitive and user friendly, EOS is happy to partner with Additive Works on the subject of AM-process-simulation. ‘Simulate before you create’ really is a key factor to ensure a successful laser sintering process with metal materials, right from the start.”
Amphyon has been developed by Additive Works, a German start-up founded 2015. As part of the partnership with the company, EOS is offering the software solution to its customers. In addition both companies will develop further enhancements for Amphyon strengthening the EOS portfolio of material, process and system by the goal to integrate the Amphyon assessment, simulation and support modules into EOSPRINT 2, EOS’ job and process management software.