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Stereolithography and selective laser sintering - process technology and simulation for optimized part building

: Klocke, F.; Celi, I.; Nöken, S.; Wirtz, H.

Dickens, P.M. ; Rapid Prototyping Association -RPA-:
European Conference on Rapid Prototyping and Manufacturing 1995. Proceedings : Hotel Villa Carlotta, Lake Maggiore, Belgirate, Italy, June 13th, 14th and 15th, 1995
Loughborough, Leicestershire: Quorn Litho, 1995
ISBN: 0-9519759-4-3
European Conference on Rapid Prototyping and Manufacturing <4, 1995, Belgirate>
Fraunhofer IPT ()
curl; FE simulation; investment casting; polymerization; Rapid Prototyping; selective laser sintering; stereolithography; tool building

Today, the accuracy and quality of parts produced by Stereolithography and Selective Laser Sintering is sufficient for design or ergonomic studies, but will usally not meet the industrial demands towards functional prototypes (which may be produced directly or through techniques following the RP processes like investment casting). Technological experiments in connection with a computer simulation yield a deeper understanding of the physical, chemical and thermal processes occurring during photopolymerization and are a vital prerequisite for optimized part building in terms of improved part accuracy and quality. A computer simulation of the SL process carried out at the IPT, being in good correlation with the experimental results, has shown, that there are complex interactions between the material shrinkage during polymerization and the thermal expansion due to the heat produced by the exothermic reaction. Basic studies concerning Selective Laser Sintering are used for an optimum adjust ment of the process parameters to reach the best possible part quality. R und D activities of the IPT include further optimization of the process technology of Stereolithography and Selective Laser Sintering, modelling and simulation of the processes (spots, lines, layers, parts) as well as industrial application (e.g. production of functional prototypes and model used for investment casting).