Development of a Standalone In-Situ Monitoring System for Defect Detection in the Direct Metal Laser Sintering Process
Direct metal laser sintering (DMLS) is a powder bed fusion (PBF) additive manufacturing process commonly used within the medical device and aerospace industries where regulations drive the requirement for stringent quality control. Using in-situ monitoring, the identification of defects, as well as the geometric and dimensional measurement of the layers throughout the build allows for greater quality control, as well as a reduction in the requirement for ex-situ measurement. A standalone monitoring system for the EOS M280 is presented in this research, allowing for the build process to be monitored layer-by-layer. The system images the build area after powder deposition and after laser exposure allowing for the identification of inefficiencies in both the powder deposition and the laser exposure. The system has proven to be capable to identify in build defects and work is ongoing to develop an automated program to identify these defects and notify the operator in real time.