How 3D Printing Works

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Additive Manufacturing, Laser Sintering and Industrial 3D Printing

How Does the Additive Manufacturing Method Work?
At EOS, we use additive manufacturing methods and the industrial 3D printing for our systems. This process builds parts layer by layer by depositing material according to digital 3D design data. The term “3D printing” is increasingly used as a synonym for additive manufacturing. However, “additive manufacturing” better reflects the professional manufacturing process that differs significantly from conventional, subtractive manufacturing methods. For example, instead of milling a workpiece from a solid block, additive manufacturing builds the part up layer by layer from material supplied as a fine powder. Various metals, plastics and composite materials can be used.

Additive manufacturing is relevant in many areas and for numerous industries. Whether used for building visual and functional prototypes or small and medium series – and increasingly for series production – this method offers convincing advantages conventional methods cannot achieve. Product development and market entry can be significantly accelerated, wgile product customization and functional integration can be achieved more quickly and at a lower cost. In this way, additive manufacturing gives large OEM manufacturers from a wide variety of industries the opportunity to differentiate themselves on the market in terms of customer benefits, cost reduction potential and sustainability targets.

EOS M 400-4 | © EOS
Building process of an EOS M 290 | © EOS
How It Works
Additive Manufacturing in Detail
First, a thin layer of the powder material is added to a building platform. There, a powerful laser beam melts the powder precisely at certain points specified by the computer-generated design data. Next, the construction platform is lowered and another layer of powder is added. The material is melted once again, which connects it to the layer below at the specified points.
The additive technique was invented more than 30 years ago. EOS has continuously developed and perfected the process and materials since the company’s founding.

Advantages of Additive Manufacturing
Why Use Additive Manufacturing as a Production Technology?
Industrial 3D printing offers customization opportunities for needs-based production by merely adapting the CAD data, even for medium production series.
Building process of an EOS M 290, DMLS, 3D printing, metal, laser | © EOS
Complex geometries or bionic structures for new functionalities: industrial 3D printing allows designers to completely reimagine and implement their ideas.
3D-printed Combustion Chamber, DMLS, metal, 3D printing | © EOS
Less material used, reduced energy consumption: lightweight designs are increasingly attractive across a variety of sectors, as the material usage, costs, weight and energy consumption in applications are often considerably reduced.
Mecuris prosthetic foot, individual adapted for the patient, 3D printing, EOS
Reduce assembly costs, make better use of space: intelligent functional integration drastically reduces the number of parts and takes more advantage of available space – making spatial requirements and assembly costs more manageable.
ASS Maschinenbau gripper built in EOS PA 2200, 3D printing | © EOS
Cost-Efficiency of Additive Manufacturing
When Is Industrial 3D Printing Worthwhile?

Like any manufacturing technology, additive manufacturing needs certain framework conditions to achieve the best cost-benefit ratio. For example, whereas the high tool costs of injection molding only pay off for large production runs, industrial 3D printing makes economic sense in other areas:

Manufacture parts cost-efficiently, even in series

Reduce the costs associated with the production and storage of spare parts by producing parts locally on demand

Accelerate product development and prototyping to secure a competitive edge

Completely reimagine products, beyond tools or wax patterns

While industrial 3D printing isn’t always an alternative to conventional manufacturing technologies in some cases, it shines where standard processes such as injection molding, die casting and milling reach their limits.

Examples From Practice
In What Areas Is This Technology Used?
Additive manufacturing was initially used for rapid prototyping, namely to make visual and functional prototypes. It can significantly speed up product development and market entry. Since then, additive manufacturing has increasingly found its way into series production.

It opens new opportunities in challenging sectors such as the healthcare, automotive & mobility and aerospace industries, as well as mass markets like lifestyle & consumer goods and production & industry. The focus is always to take advantage of industrial 3D printing to differentiate oneself from the competition and lay sustainable foundations for the future.

Our customer references present a series of innovative applications that were realized using our industrial 3D printers.

Case Studies
Production & Industry
Completely new possibilities: maximum freedom of design, complex parts with low weight and integrated functionality.

Case Studies
Medicine, Sports, Consumer Goods
Our 3D printers give you freedom of design and rapid availability for applications that improve people’s lives.

Case Studies
Automotive, Transport and Logistics
How 3D printing enhances the efficiency of engines and vehicle parts and enables customized spare parts management.

Case Studies
Saving weight means saving cash and the environment. Additive manufacturing enables this savings in aircraft, satellites and engines with lightweight design and certified quality.

We have been using EOS technology for more than eight years and have always had positive experiences. When used correctly, the design freedom provides significant benefits that give our customers market advantages that are nearly unrivaled.

Hannes Kuhn | Managing Director | Kuhn-Stoff GmbH & Co KG
Are You Looking for the Right 3D Printer?
We Can Offer You a Comprehensive Portfolio
of Additive Manufacturing Systems.
Whether for prototypes or the additive series production of complex parts, we have the right solution for you. Our extensive portfolio includes 3D printers, accessories and materials for plastic and metal components.

Shop floor full of EOS Formiga P 110 | © EOS
Systems & Solutions
for 3D Printing With Plastics
Our systems for additive manufacturing with plastics are available with various build volumes and laser powers to meet your production challenges. We have a broad portfolio of polymer materials and easy-to-integrate software.

Building process of an EOS M 290, DMLS, 3D printing, metal, laser | © EOS
Systems & Solutions
for 3D Printing With Metals
Your 3D printed metal parts: our additive manufacturing systems offer a wide range of build space sizes and laser power ratings – whatever your application requires.

Lightweight Titanium Brake Pedal, DMLS, 3D printing EOS | © EOS
Services & Consulting
Services, Training and Consulting for 3D Printing
From first contact with additive manufacturing technology to mature solutions for everyday operations – with Additive Minds Consulting, global services and training offered by the Additive Minds Academy, we accompany every phase of your path to success with additive manufacturing.

Are you looking for the right 3D printer?
We’re happy to help. Contact us today.