Solukon upgrades depowdering system

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Solukon has announced key upgrades to its SFM-AT350 depowdering system.

The SFM-AT350 is designed for medium-sized parts up to a height of 420 mm and a weight of 60 kg. High freedom of motion, a compact structure with optimized chamber volumes and along with it, a minimal inertization time, are the system’s main features. Solukon says the SFM-AT350 is the top-selling system in its class. At the same time, similarly to metal parts in the large part segment, a trend toward increasingly complex parts has developed. To be ready for all geometries, Solukon has announced key upgrades to the SFM-AT350.

Complex cleaning sequences for the SFM-AT350 can now be calculated with the SPR-Pathfinder software, launched around a year ago for the larger SFM-AT800-S and SFM-AT1000-S systems. Now it is available for the mid-range segment. Based on the CAD file of the build job, the software calculates the ideal motion sequence in the Solukon system for removing excess powder from complex interior structures. The calculations of the software are based on a flow simulation that analyzes the part’s digital twin. The individually calculated motion sequence is then read by the Solukon system, which in turn runs the programmed paths. This ensures that even the most complex parts with labyrinth-like channels are cleaned – rapidly and without any human programming effort. “Smart, software-supported depowdering is also the key to serial cleaning with the SFM-AT350 and therefore, real serial production,” said Andreas Hartmann, the CEO/CTO at Solukon.

The form of excitation has also been upgraded. In the future, Solukon will offer the depowdering system as the SFM-AT350-E with piezoelectric excitation. Users will have the choice between two completely different excitation forms: the familiar pneumatic form in conjunction with a vibrator and an optional knocker, and piezoelectric excitation.

Since piezoelectric excitation originates directly at the rotary table of the Solukon system, the part can be shifted to the optimal vibration range with high precision. The high frequencies of the electronic excitation are considerably higher than the harmful natural frequency of the part. As the frequency constantly controls and regulates itself the risk of exciting the resonance frequency and damaging sensitive structures is avoided. The upgrade makes the SFM-AT350-E ideal for delicate structures made from materials that are difficult to depowder, like copper. Another major advantage of the new form of excitation is its low levels of noise emission. As a result, the SFM-AT350-E is a fit for the naturally quiet 3D printer environment.

“The requirements for depowdering increase as part complexity, material complexity and diversity increase. Growing production quantities are also an influential factor. At the same time, our customers want us to provide systems that are very easy to operate. After experiencing a breakthrough with the launch of our smart SPR-Pathfinder software, which calculates optimal part motion, we have achieved a further milestone upon launching the SFM-AT350-E: For any depowdering challenge, we can now offer the optimal frequency excitation,” said Hartmann.

More information here.

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