Laser Engineered Net Shaping (LENS) / Direct Metal Deposition (DMD)

LENS and DMD are the same technology. LENS/DMD is used to print parts out of metal using a print head (as opposed to the DMLS process). The print head moves in all three axes. A laser is focused through the print head and metal powder is injected into it. The powder is sintered as it exits the head and is put down on the model.

An inert shroud gas is used inside of the print head to shield the metal from oxygen (so that it sinters correctly and can be controlled more accurately).

from http://home.att.net/~castleisland/lens.htm:

These technologies have been utilized to fabricate and repair injection molding machines, and to create specialized parts for aerospace applications.

LENS/DMD is limited at the moment because support structures would have to be made out of the same material as the model, which makes them difficult to remove afterwards.

Advantages?
• The printed objects usually have desirable metallurgical properties and are completely dense.
• Can be used not only to fabricate but to repair parts (something DMLS is not capable of doing).

Disadvantages?
• Severe overhangs are an issue because of a lack of a different material for support structures.
• Objects usually require some post-print machining.

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One Response to “Laser Engineered Net Shaping (LENS) / Direct Metal Deposition (DMD)”

  1. Laserinformationen - Der Blog » Blog Archive » Rapid Prototyping Technologien Says:

    […] Ein sehr interessanter Blog zum Thema Rapid Prototyping mit dem Laser – aber auch mit anderen Technologien – findet sich hier.Beschrieben werden (bis jetzt) die folgenden Technologien:SLA – StereolithographySLS – Selective Laser SinteringFDM – Fused Deposition ModelingLOM – Laminated Object Manufacturing3DP – 3-Dimensional PrintingInkjet and MultiJet PrintingSGC – Solid Ground CuringJP – Jetted PhotopolymerDMLS – Direct Metal Laser SinteringLENS – Laser Engineered Net Shaping & DMD – Direct Metal Deposition […]

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