How to Embed Sensors and Electrical Functionalities into AM Metal Components
Speaker: Sebastien Lani, Project Manager, CSEM
Additive manufacturing (AM) has demonstrated its potential for the production of parts for various markets and is no longer limited to prototyping. With polymer based printing systems, various academic groups have demonstrated the integration of sensors and actuators during or after the printing process as well as fluidic manifolds or damping structures for midsoles. In metal AM there is less diversity of smart devices where functions of parts are typically for structural purposes such as lightweight jigs or parts with embedded fluidic functions like molds for cooling systems or the leap fuel nozzle from GE©, or for parts with high surface porosity for cell growth. At CSEM, we are actively optimizing 3D printing to manufacture sub-millimeter parts with high precision and to embed functionalities such as mechanical (compliant mechanism), electrical and/or fluidic feed-throughs, sensors, and actuators. We will present our recent developments in combining laser powder bed fusion to produce a 3D structure with embedded flexible elements to guide a motion, electrical wiring and connectors, with Aerosol jet printing to deposit insulation and sensors. Two different applications will be presented and consisting of an XY moving stage with embedded strain sensor and a smart pipe with an embedded temperature sensor.