Siemens announce innovative additive manufacturing solution to reduce distortion

Formnext 2018 saw Siemens showcasing its newest advancements in the additive manufacturing field.

Mindsphere creates a closed feedback loop that sends production data back up the line to enable production to be streamlined and kinks to be ironed out – image courtesy of Siemens.
Image courtesy of Siemens.

Among the solutions presented under the “Industrialize Additive Manufacturing” banner were:

  • Software and automation solutions for machine builders and users in the additive manufacturing sphere
  • Integrated Additive Manufacturing build process simulation software
  • Extended financing services for Industrie 4.0 implementation in additive manufacturing

Siemens unveiled its new software solution – Simcenter 3D Additive Manufacturing Build Process Simulation (SC3D AM). As a simulation tool, the SC3D AM predicts overheating, deformations and additional defects that can occur during the printing process. The software then automatically generates corrected geometry that compensates against these defects and distortions.

The SC3D AM can also be used within the generative design process, minimising trial and error for the creation of a product.

Speaking with Design News, global director of product marketing for Simcenter at Siemens PLM, Ravi Shankar stated:

“SC3D AM gives the user high flexibility in defining the process parameters. A combination of printer and material can be defined and stored in the database. or the process parameters, information like layer thickness, recoating time, hatching distance, and much more are defined as well as laser properties,” he said. “This allows the user to specify printer-specific properties and therefore take into account if an object is printed on different printers with different process parameters.”

These new hardware and software advances will be implemented within the company’s new Additive Manufacturing facility at Material Solutions. Siemens currently creates upwards of 5,000 additively manufactured parts for more than 80 customers around the world. These customers include those in the Aerospace and Automotive industries.

This year also saw the company launch the Siemens’ Additive Manufacturing Network, a collaborative online platform with the aim of bringing industrial 3D printing engineering knowledge, on-demand design and production capacity to the global manufacturing industry. This network allows manufacturing service providers and part buyers to benefit from streamlined collaboration, quotes, procurement and order monitoring. The network is part of Siemens’ aim to speed-up the delivery of new product designs, and reduce the additive manufacturing adoption risk.

In a company first, Siemens also announced new financing models for additive manufacturing users and machine builders. According to Siemens, these solutions are “designed to open up affordable and sustainable implementation of Industrie 4.0 to users and machine builders in the AM sector and in doing so boost the industrialization of 3D printing”.

These models include arrangements for leasing of 3D printing machines, with the company aiming to also include MindSphere connected pay-per-use models in the future.