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Investment casting shells in 1 day using Selective Laser Sintering (SLS)

: Klocke, F.; Wirtz, H.; Freyer, C.

Foundryman 93 (2000), No.2, pp.63-65
ISSN: 0007-0718
ISSN: 0953-6035
Journal Article
Fraunhofer IPT ()
Rapid Prototyping; ceramic; selective laser sintering; metal prototype; investment casting; SLS

The Fraunhofer Institute of Production Technology has been successful in using Selective Laser Sintering to build ceramic shells directly from zirconium silicate. Shells for complex metal parts may be built in less than a day, accelerating the process of creating metal prototypes dramatically. No thermoplastic binders are used and there is no need for additional sintering; the shells are readily usable once they have been laser sintered and cleaned of excess powder. Parts that are hard to produce the traditional way have been cast using this new technology, demonstrating the enormous potential in putting down on product development time.