- The ability to print large metal parts is in high demand in the aeronautics, space, defence, and energy sectors.
AddUp Solutions, a metal additive manufacturing solutions provider founded by the French companies Michelin and Fives, has announced the launch of the FormUp 350 Evolution. This new variant, based on the architecture of the FormUp 350 New Generation machine, offers increased manufacturing volume as well as an architecture focused on reducing non-productive time.
With the FormUp 350 Evolution’s 185% larger volume, it is now possible to print large parts such as combustion chambers, aircraft structural elements, missile bodies, and even large-capacity heat exchangers in a single operation.
FormUp 350 Evolution
FormUp 350 Evolution has a print volume of 350 x 350 x 1000 mm, allowing it to print parts up to one metre high. This feature will enable many manufacturers to broaden the range of L-PBF technology applications. One of the main limitations of laser melting machines on powder bed has historically been their smaller build volume in comparison to other metal processes.
The new Evolution machine has a Z-axis extension and a manufacturing enclosure that is nearly identical to the existing FormUp 350 New Generation machine. This allows for complete recipe and parameter compatibility in order to create production-scale parts with the desired properties. The prospect of starting production on an Evolution machine without any development effort is appealing to industrialists who already have New Generation machines.
Zero waiting time between builds
While the manufacturing enclosure is inspired by the FormUp 350 machine, the Evolution machine has an entirely productivity-focused architecture. AddUp engineers worked to eliminate all non-productive time in the 3D printing process because printing tall parts traditionally requires long manufacturing times.
The new machine has an extractible build chamber, which allows the manufactured part and its build chamber to be removed from the machine immediately after completion of the build. This maintains the inert environment, ensuring part quality and powder reuse. As soon as the previous chamber is removed, a new platform can be installed inside the machine, and the next production cycle can begin. Cooling the previous build and vacuuming the loose powder can be done as background tasks rather than taking up machine time, saving several hours between productions.
Fully integrated into the FormUp 350 range
The Evolution machine, a “stretched” version of the FormUp 350 New Generation, inherits all of the characteristics that have made the FormUp range so successful, particularly in the aerospace, defence, and medical sectors. This new machine, like the FormUp 350 New Generation, offers versatility with the option of a roller or scraper recoating device and a number of lasers ranging in power from 500W to 4,500W. With the help of a 3-axis laser scanner capable of high precision reach to every point on the build plate, part quality is second to none.
Furthermore, all laser and chamber parameters are completely open, allowing manufacturers to optimise part mechanical properties and surface finish. The FormUp has the highest level of safety on the market, with an autonomous powder module and a fume filtration module that prevents operators from being exposed to toxic or explosive substances, even when using reactive powders. This also allows for the powder’s properties to be maintained across multiple productions, ensuring that the powder is never exposed to ambient air.
AddUp aimed to meet the real need of production-level manufacturing by introducing an L-PBF machine with a one-meter extended height – to produce large parts with a high level of complexity and precision. The FormUp 350 Evolution responds to the need to make such applications profitable, propelling the Metal 3D Printing industry forward.
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