Additive manufacturing is becoming increasingly relevant for industrial production processes. Metal-based laser beam melting, in particular, is enjoying widespread use and great industrial attention in this context. The integration of electronics in components is of great interest for many applications (e.g., quality assurance of process chains, logistics, predictive maintenance). The automated insertion of sensors makes it possible for the first time to integrate components at any position in the component during laser beam melting without the need for a complex and cost-intensive sensor assembly.
Our focus is the integration of sensors into additively manufactured metallic components. During the production of the metal component, the manufacturing process is interrupted to automatically insert a sensor into a cavity provided for this purpose. This brings significant advantages, as positions in the component can be reached that are otherwise closed to modification. The sensor can be placed directly behind functional surfaces without significantly weakening the component. Sensor signal transmission is also challenging. AMLab is developing both wireless and wire-based flexible concepts.