SCANLAB enables end-to-end software chain for better LPBF machining results

Integrated into the machine software, the new SCANmotionControl increases precision in additive manufacturing

SCANLAB has developed new metal 3D-printing systems by providing compatible solution modules. These include laser scan systems and control solutions for efficient laser process development and effective production. Printing results from the Fraunhofer ILT, which can be deployed on industrial machines using the new SCANmotionControl software, will be presented at formnext in Frankfurt.

At the heart of laser powder bed fusion (LPBF) machines for 3D printing of metal are the scan systems and their interaction with the laser. Alongside the hardware components themselves, control systems have become increasingly important in recent years.

Efficient operation of industrial laser machines in the field of additive manufacturing requires control solutions that map the entire software landscape from CAD/CAM to machine software right through to laser job execution. SCANLAB works with providers including AUTODESK, DYNDRITE, as well as SIEMENS in combination with AIXPATH, to deliver solution modules to integrators. This simplifies system development and significantly shortens the time to market for new laser processing machines.

More flexible laser process control and higher component quality

SCANmotionControl, the recently launched control software, makes it possible to synchronise the scan system, laser and other peripheral equipment. The software calculates optimal trajectories for laser machining on the basis of predefined machining patterns and process parameters, taking into account the physical limits of the scan head. The energy input can be defined precisely, since speed and laser power are planned, simulated and adjusted synchronously. Until now, the exact scan path had to be determined through experimentation. Thanks to the offline simulation of the trajectories, this can be examined and optimised beforehand on the computer. This gives the process developer full control over the energy input at any position on the workpiece, making job planning far simpler and shortening development times.

Furthermore, by testing the software in additive manufacturing, Fraunhofer ILT has demonstrated that the dimensional accuracy of filigree components can be improved. “With the use of SCANmotionControl, for example, we were able to avoid edge bulging on complex components – and not just in the lab. Using the software, the results can easily be applied to an industrial scale,” explained Dr Tobias Pichler, process and systems engineering, Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology ILT.

The new software allows reaches optimum machining results with minimum laser-off times. The scan systems fiberSYS, excelliSCAN and intelliSCAN IV are ready for SCANmotionControl