What is Laser Metal Deposition?
Laser metal deposition – often also called „laser cladding“, „laser deposition welding, „laser coating“, “Direct Metal Deposition” (DMD) or “Direct Energy Deposition” (DED) – is a generative manufacturing method for various metals. While a laser melts the surface of a component, the process introduces a metallic filler material in the form of metallic powder at the same time. This material creates a form-fitting, firmly welded layer of 0.01 to 1.5 mm per application. Applying several layers in succession builds complex geometries and structures onto a part.
The process thus enables 3D laser printing of metal. Compared to the alternative metallic 3D printing process – Laser Metal Fusion (LMF) – the processing of the component takes place in free space. Laser metal deposition thus offers more freedom and flexibility in contrast to LMF, where the process must be performed inside the enclosure of a 3D printer. Laser Metal Deposition (LMD) is also suitable for large-scale due to the lower cycle times and the high degree of automation.
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Do you need help with the laser processing of your component? BLS is looking forward to helping you determine the requirements for your 3D laser material processing.
Laser metal deposition can apply various materials to a part. Currently, laser cladding of copper, laser cladding of nickel or laser cladding of cobalt are particularly popular applications. Laser cladding of aluminum and laser cladding of titanium are also standard in laser deposition welding.
In addition, Laser Metal Deposition (LMD) can switch between different materials, or apply a special material combination that does not otherwise exist. For example, a component with an alloy of nickel or iron refined with tungsten carbide powder provides particularly high wear protection. The process is accordingly ideal for all applications in which an expensive material only needs to selectively protect a component at the critical points for economic reasons. This enables a highly economical use of valuable raw materials
Trust in over 30 years of experience.
With extensive laser experience, BLS supports customers as a contract manufacturer from parameter determination / basic development through prototype production to serial production. A high-performance machine park and different laser types enable an overall optimized service offering. The quality management system and exchange with leading research institutions ensure quality at the highest level.
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Laser Metal Deposition advantages
Laser Metal Deposition (LMD) offers design freedom, economical process speed and exceptionally high flexibility in material use. The process can precisely apply thin layers from 30µm to 1.5mm thickness. It enables components to be gently enhanced with a valuable, functional layer or to be repaired selectively at low cost. Automated guidance of the laser ensures highest quality and precision.
Laser metal deposition expertise
3D welding (laser cladding) can apply a variety of materials to a metallic component. By using several conveying units and conveying gases, the method can add different materials either alternating at a specific rate or simultaneously in a specific atio. This allows the development of new, special alloy depending on the required functionality. Laser deposition welding can add material layers in any shape, allowing large-area changes to geometries.
BLS Laser Metal Deposition Offering
BLS Lasertechnology GmbH is an expert for laser metal deposition in Germany and offers a wide range of services. BLS already helps from the beginning of the product development process with the conception to ensure the best possible processing of the components.
Laser Metal Deposition Procedures
The LMD process is versatile. Besides the EHLA process (“Extreme High Speed Laser Material Deposition”), BLS can also use laser cladding for laser coating or laser repair. In addition, laser metal deposition 3D laser print various shapes or join components with large gaps as a generative manufacturing.
Extremely fast application (up to 250cm²/min) by heating the powder already before the melting bath & thus melting faster; allows thin layers of 30-300 µm thickness
Fast, efficient and simple repair of expensive components that could otherwise only be procured new at high cost or with long delivery times
Joining of components not suitable for laser welding; includes welding of large gaps or joining of dissimilar materials
Targeted upgrading of a component via the application of a thin, valuable material layer to protect against wear or corrosion