Selective Laser Melting, Powder Metallurgy & Additive Manufacturing

Additive Manufacturing processes like selective laser melting (SLM) and powder metallurgy are on the rise – and they continue to disrupt traditional manufacturing as we know it.

While the public eye continues to focus almost solely on 3D printing, these other laser additive manufacturing methods are quite literally shaping our manufacturing future.

In the weeks that follow LIA’s 35th International Congress on Applications of Lasers and Electro-Optics (ICALEO®), Lasers Today shifts its focus to innovative and critical additive manufacturing processes in preparation for our Laser Additive Manufacturing Workshop (LAM®). Our next LAM, which takes place February 21-22, in Houston, Texas, will cover all facets of additive manufacturing, including 3D printing, selective laser melting (SLM), powder metallurgy, and more.

A recent Fortune article, which discusses the urgency of 3D metal printing and additive manufacturing processes and the challenges faced by the rise of these methods, echoes the importance of laser applications in these areas succinctly. While 3D printing is a big part of the present and future of additive manufacturing, it is equally important to acknowledge other applications that are disrupting the marketplace and defining its future.


SLM and Powder Metallurgy Are Making Waves in the Industry

In its September issue, EuroPhotonics published an article discussing the changing landscape of Laser Materials Processing. Illustrating a shift from a handful of manufacturing operations to the rapid increase of additive methods, the change is happening worldwide. The piece discusses several additive processes outside of 3D printing. The use of selective laser melting (SLM) in rapid prototyping, for example, allows early versions or low volume creations to be created without the use of complicated, often time-consuming tooling.

This feature is just one of the many additive manufacturing processes described. Find the full article here.


The use of powder metallurgy to create high-quality parts only continues to rise. LPW Technology shared a blog post discussing the quality control process of determining if unexpected results are the doing of a machine, or the powders themselves. As manufacturing experts know, a machine’s output can be disrupted by even the slightest error or change. This power metallurgy article provides a unique, first-hand perspective on some of the challenges, and the subsequent solutions associated with additive manufacturing practices.

Read the full post here.

Interested in learning about these laser applications and more at LAM in February? Review the Lasers Today LAM 2016 recap and visit to register today.