Archive for the ‘Paper’ Category

Laminated Object Manufacturing (LOM)

05/20/2009

LOM uses a laser, but the material and process greatly differ from SLA or SLS. It is based on the idea of laminating material; that is, building up a model sheet by sheet with adhesive in between each sheet.

On the side of the bed is a roll of paper with adhesive on one side; at the start of each layer, paper is rolled over the whole bed and heated so that it adheres to the previous layers. A laser traces over the cross section of the model and then cross hatches over all of the extraneous material so that it can be removed later.

At the end of the process the model is contained within a block and you must brush off all of the cross hatched parts (which break off in cubes as a result of the cross hatching… see the picture below). The finished material is described by most as “wood-like.” It can be further machined like wood, though the model has to be sealed through whatever means in order to prevent moisture damage.

AZoM.com has a nice visual description of the process:

LOM machines have also been created that laminate plastic or metal sheets using the same process.

Advantages?
• Cheap materials.
• No support structures are necessary.
• Larger working area than most RP technologies.

Disadvantages?
• The excess material can be difficult and time consuming to remove.
AZoM.com says that it has problems producing good bonds between layers, and that it has difficulty producing hollow parts.
• However cheap the material may be, it generates a lot of waste compared to other methods.

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