EOS, one of the leading companies in additive manufacturing, approaches quality assurance with an emphasis on technology development that it outlined in a recent report.
“Consistent and repeatable part quality is essential for series production applications,” said Tobias Abeln, CTO of EOS. “With its quality assurance concept, which is unique to the industry, EOS covers the three technological elements of Additive Manufacturing which have a direct influence on the quality of an additively manufactured component – namely, system, material and process.”
In order to make series production possible using additive manufacturing, EOS has created a rigorous quality assurance program. There are 70 systems – covering an area of about 2,300 square meters – of research and development for quality assurance, application and training at the company’s headquarters in Kraiilling, Germany, and 15 more at the EOS Oy plant in Finland. Worldwide, an additional 20 systems are available at international EOS technology centers.
These research and development systems are used to guarantee the reliable observance of manufacturing standards during the production of both polymer and metal products. The manufactured parts are tested for mechanical properties, tensile strength, elongation at break, surface quality, component density, and numerous other industry-standard decisive criteria.
The metal materials themselves are also tested for consistent quality at the EOS Oy branch, from the time the metals arrive as base powder to the batch’s final tests. In particular, to be sure the material is good for additive manufacturing, consistent grain size distribution is checked as well as the material’s chemical characteristics.
During the actual additive build process, the materials’ parameters continue to be checked for quality assurance.
EOS has been certified for the development, manufacturing, sales, and service of additive manufacturing solutions using laser sintering technology since 1998. Their process parameters are based on more than 20 years of experience in product testing.
Filed Under: 3D printing • additive manufacturing • stereolithography, Industrial automation