Dental parts – speedy and cost-effective directly from 3D data
With its SLM 50, Realizer GmbH from the East Westphalian city of Borchen (Germany) will introduce an absolute world novelty at the IDS in cologne: The first desktop machine to speedily and highly accu-rately produce functional dental parts made of metal based on 3D data, utilizing the Selective Laser Melting (SLM™) method. With its dimensions of 80 x 70 x 50 cm, the SLM 50 is far smaller than the large SLM machines previously available on the market and therefore even works economically at low volumes.
During Selective Laser Melting (SLM™), the metal parts are constructed from 3D data layer by layer. To affect this, metal powder is applied in wafer-thin layers and melted on at the predetermined locations using a powerful fibre laser. Following each melting process, the work platform is lowered so that the next layer can be applied. This way, even intricate functional compo-nents can be produced in an accurate and speedy manner. The finished work pieces feature the same material properties as conventionally pro-duced components and can also be processed the same way.
The SLM 50 was designed for components with a diameter of up to 60 mm and a height of up to 40 mm. It is particularly well suited for use in dental laboratories and mill centres for the production of crown frameworks, bridge frameworks and brackets made of cobalt chrome. On the construction platform, up to 30 individual components can be manufactured concur-rently. Realizer’s executive director Dr. Mathias Fockele points out “In comparison to our lar-ger machines – the SLM 240 and SLM 100 – the SLM 50 is not only smaller, but also entails a considerably lower acquisition cost. In the manufacture of dental parts as of approximately one hundred pieces per month it is thus even more economical than the conventional die casting technique.”
When using the SLM 50, a conventional dental die is prepared first. The dental technician scans the model and prepares the 3D-data using a special CAD software. Based on these 3D data, the SLM 50 produces custom fit dental components of the highest quality. These are not only absolutely true to size and leak-proof, but also require only minimal post proc-essing.
Optionally, the SLM 50 can be expanded into a laser welding unit. Not only can it weld the most minute weld points, but it can also produce the finest weld seams without having to move the work piece even once.