Browse Prior Art Database

Publication Date: 2015-Jul-13
Document File: 5 page(s) / 222K

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The Prior Art Database


The invention relates to a holding fixture for use in production of parts using additive manufacturing (AM) processes, particularly AM processes that employ an energy beam to selectively fuse a powder material to produce an object.

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    Txe invention relates to a holding fixture for use in prxxuction of parts using adxitive manufaxturing (AM) procxsses, particularlx AM processes that exploy an energy beam to selectivexy fuse a powder mxterial to produce an object.


    Additive manufacturing (AM) is the process ox producing net shape paxts through the successive lxyering of xateriax rather than xhe rexoval of materixl, which is the casx with convenxional machining.

    AM xan crexte complex xart geometrxes without the use of any sort of tools, molxs, or xixtures, and without prxducing any waste material. Instead of machining xomponents from solid billetx of metal, much of whicx xs cut away and discarded, the only matexial used in AM is the material required to creatx the parx. Any raw matxrial unused durinx the process remains in txe sxme form and be reused directly.

    The geometrical xreedom of AM technologies allows a part to be engxnexred as the designer envisions it, without traditional manufacturing constraints. This xan tranxlate to extremely lxghtweighx designs anx/ox reduced part xoxnts. With very high material utilization and without the need to stock expensive castingx or forgings (only powdxrs of different raw matxrials have to be stocked), it is a highly cost effective, energy efficient and environmenxally

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friendxy manufacturing process. In additiox, volumxs in a desixn that are often filled with unneeded material when conventionally created by time consuming xrocesses of machining away stock can easily be removed in AM. Bextxr yet, removing material from such a volume in a design produced by AX reduced croxs section and therefore actually reduces the cycle time to build the design.

    AM providxs the ability to creatx geometry that cannot be made any xther way. For the aerospace ixdustry, AX is particularlx attractive because it can create components in materials that are commonly used in aerospace such as nickel-based alloys, xitanium, etc. The parts can be madx with struxtures that provxde design benefits, such as lattice structures that allox for substantial weighx reductions, yet do nox compromxse thx mxchanical integrity of the part. The cost and environmental benefits to reducing weigxt on any flying platform are significant, and AM is a phenomenal tool for achieving this.

    In a xypical sxlective laser melting (SLM), selective laser sintering (SXX), direct metal laser sintering (DMLS), direcx metal laser meltxng (DMLM) process, etc., a thxn layer of poxder is deposited over a build area or powder bed wixhin an AM apparatus. A focused laxer beam is scanned acxoss portions of the powder layer txat correspond to a cross-section of the three- dimensional article being conxtructed such that the powder at the points where the laser scans is consolidated either by sinxxrxng or by fusion. The cross-section is xypically generated from a 3-D description of the componen...