Prima Industry is a world leader manufacturer of laser machines for metal components. Prima has recently started with a new activity in Additive Manufacturing systems, investing in both technologies of metal powder bed and direct energy deposition. The scope of this use case is to enhance process monitoring and control for producing metal components and make Additive process more productive and robust.
The next generation of manufacturing systems will be based on advanced processes, where additive manufacturing (AM) leads the technology trend. If AM has done a first quantum leap shifting from prototyping to production, the second relevant leap is now directed to make series production a reality. Next Generation of AM systems go towards a cost-effective solution by embracing a more robust process and higher process quality. To reach this aim, it is important to improve monitoring and control aspects towards process reliability and ZDM in terms of part dimension, surface roughness, part quality. Improving the real time monitoring and closed loop control can lead to reduce development time, enhance part quality and reduce waste and cost of production.
In this pilot, additive manufacturing machines for powder bed and direct deposition will be considered to enhance process control for producing metal components. Traditional solutions and new concepts of machines will be considered to test new edge devices for process control, towards a ZDM result, and to work on data management and analytics to implement the whole manufacturing process by a platform and control loop approach. In laser-based additive manufacturing, production time has a great influence on the economic efficiency of the production process. To increase the productivity but also reliability of such processes, a zero-defect AM strategy is targeted. Starting from modular devices for real time detection of the process, it will be possible to collect data, deploy new parameters to adapt the machine control to the actual task and communicate data at management level, where not only the single machine is considered; approach will consider both new systems and new concepts of machines in parallel with AQ control loops.