Motion control for the advancement of additive manufacturing processes

Additive manufacturing and 3D printing are revolutionizing multiple areas of technology and manufacturing. The dispensing of compounds and coatings requires a 3D motion system to move either the printing head or the substrate with up to six degrees of freedom. Overall system accuracy and throughput are vitally important to create complex structures with a commercially viable process.

As the precision of additive manufacturing increases, one of the prominent limiting factors will be the motion of the process. Aerotech provides the motion necessary for the advancement of various additive manufacturing processes including material extrusion, printed electronics/dispensing, powder bed fusion/laser sintering, and bioprinting. Material extrusion processes are optimized by using Aerotech’s high-throughput gantries and component level solutions, while printed electronics and dispensing applications benefit from advanced multi-degree of freedom control and mechanics. Powder bed fusion and laser sintering applications benefit from Aerotech’s high-accuracy galvanometer and motion controller, which are coupled in a way to give the end-user more feedback than any other solution on the market.

The Automation 3200 machine controller includes flexible, powerful programming capabilities to allow the user to program velocities, coordinate transformations and tool offsets as required by the unique geometry of the system and parts being produced. High-precision linear and rotary stages offer the best available accuracy, repeatability and long-term reliability. Aerotech also offers complete motion subsystems and turnkey machines. Customers and end-users work closely with Aerotech’s engineering staff to design the system to fit the unique requirements of their application, ensuring minimal risk and resulting in the lowest cost of ownership available.

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