Operators usually feed the printers, the sieves or hoppers manually. Therefore, the process relies heavily on manual labour and exposes the employee to hazardous metal dust and heavy lifting. In addition, it is not easy to ensure that all the metal powder is picked up from the drum/vat. The resulting powder loss leads to expensive process waste. Automating the process enables higher productivity, more safety for the employees and an ergonomic working environment.
When filling the 3D printer with metal powder, Piab vacuum conveyors pick up the new or recovered metal powder directly from a sieve/metal drum or hopper and feed the printer with it. The removal can also be done directly from the overflow container.