Design for Metal AM
Metal powder bed fusion (e.g., direct metal laser sintering, selective laser melting, and electron beam melting) is an AM process in which thermal energy selectively fuses regions of a powder bed. Materials used include stainless steel, tool steel, aluminium, titanium alloys, nickel-based alloys, cobalt chrome, and precious metals such as gold. The part being constructed normally requires supports (sometimes called anchors) to be added, built from the same material as the part. These supports are removed manually after the build process, so the designer must allow room for access to the supports. Also, care must be taken when creating small features that are attached to the supports because they can break off accidentally during support removal.