Metal 3D printing, also known as Direct Metal Laser Sintering (DMLS) and Direct Metal Laser Melting (DMLM) is an additive layer technology. During High-Quality 3D models, a metal 3D printer utilizes a laser beam to melt 20-60 micron layers of metal powder on top of each other.
Powdered metal is spread across the entire build platform and selectively melted to previous layers. This additive process allows metal parts to be grown out of a bed of powdered metal. The process is like other polymer-based Selective Laser Sintering (SLS) 3D printers that use powder bed fusion.
Parts created are fully dense metals with excellent mechanical properties. Other metal 3D printing processes exist which use a binder, although they produce parts that are not fully dense metal.
The process can produce complex geometries that traditional CNC machining processes simply cannot. Examples of metal 3D parts include molds and inserts, ductwork, and rapid tooling.
Metal 3D printing materials include stainless steel, cobalt chrome, maraging steel, aluminum, nickel alloy, and titanium.
Metal 3D printing is capable of producing durable parts from metal powders. These parts can be complex, intricate, and elaborate all while maintaining their strength.