Editor’s Pick: Simulate Metal Part Designs Before 3D Printing

End-to-end metal additive manufacturing process simulation can help you find and fix problems before it's scrap and rework time.

End-to-end metal additive manufacturing process simulation can help you find and fix problems before it's scrap and rework time.

The new Materialise Magics Simulation Module extends the Materialise Magics 3D Print Suite with capabilities to simulate metal designs, enabling engineers to address problems before actual additive manufacturing begins. Shown here is a support structure. The red regions predict locations where the part is likely to fail or warp. Image courtesy of Materialise NV.


Dear DE Reader:

There's nothing like that icy knot in your gut as you watch schedules and budgets slouch off to oblivion. Scrap, rework and especially the dreaded recall are the ghouls that bedevil the design and manufacturing biz. And as mortals are learning quickly, metal additive manufacturing (AM) comes with its own witches' brew of deformed and warped nightmares. Today's Editor's Pick of the Week could help exorcise such demons.

Materialise recently announced a new metal AM simulation module for its Materialise Magics 3D printing suite of applications. Devilishly called the Materialise Magics Simulation Module, this set of tools can help you spot and repair problems with your part designs before they head off to metal AM production floor.

The module works in cahoots with the Magics 3D suite, and you can use it throughout the pre-build process from beginning to end. Part of its secret sauce is that the module leverages an OEM (original equipment manufacturer) version of the Simufact Additive Solver, a scalable, dedicated solution for simulating metal-based AM processes.

Basically, how it works is that you load you data, set up its calibration profile, prep the simulation and you're on the way. Aside: This combination works with other engineering solutions, which can provide for highly certified metal production.

Once you have results, you can apply them directly to the support generation and orientation tools in the Materialise Magics 3D print environment. There, you can visualize results with a palette of panning, rotating and zooming tools. When you discover areas likely to, say, shrink, warp or otherwise fail, you can fix them right there.

The Materialise Magics Simulation Module runs on a typical engineering workstation, provides results quickly and doesn't insist that you be a simulation or metal AM wizard to use it, according to Materialise. Along those lines, one neat touch is an integrated calibration feature that helps lead you to the correct simulation settings for your metal 3D print machine and material.

The Materialise Magics Simulation Module is really all about reducing the number of metal AM test builds, minimizing scrap and speeding time to market. It also sounds like it should reduce costs and pay for itself in short order.

But enough of such chattering. Eyeball today's Editor's Pick of the Week then probe the URLs at the bitter end. Make sure to smite the link to the Materialise Magics Simulation Module demo video to see it at work. Happy Halloween.

Thanks, Pal. – Lockwood

Anthony J. Lockwood
Editor at Large, DE

More Materialise Coverage

Share This Article

About the Author

Anthony J. Lockwood's avatar
Anthony J. Lockwood

Anthony J. Lockwood is Digital Engineering’s founding editor. He is now retired. Contact him via [email protected].

Follow DE