Micro-Induction Processing for Additive Manufacturing
3D Printing Using Any Metal or Metal Matrix Composite
Micro-Induction is an additive manufacturing technology invented by Grid Logic that extends conventional induction heating and microwave industrial processing techniques with two innovations:
- Power transfer to small particles
- Application of magnetic fields to spatially-compact volumes
Micro-Induction is similar to selective laser sintering and electron beam melting except that the high power laser, or electron beam, is replaced with small-scale high-frequency induction heating transducers. Each transducer consists of a radio frequency power source and an innovative magnetic flux concentrator that apply a spatially compact, high frequency magnetic field to a dense powder bed with a CNC translation stage. The Micro-Induction method enables cladding and fabrication of three-dimensional, structurally sound metallic parts of virtually any size through the layer-by-layer consolidation of powders.
Unlike other additive manufacturing methods that indiscriminately heat the metal powder, Micro-Induction system parameters are tuned to the physical properties of the material. The metal powder and the Micro-Induction system form a tightly integrated combination that allows for the development of robust material-specific additive manufacturing “recipes”. This permits processing powders with a broad range of particle sizes and shapes. It also permits selective heating of desired materials in a composite by varying the frequency of the applied magnetic field.