There is a bewildering choice of powdered metal materials available for additive manufacturing processes, and now LPW Technology says they’ve created an online software product to make selecting and tracking the proper powder for various applications more effective.
LPW Technology develops and supplies metal powders for additive manufacturing (AM), and they say LPW POWDERSOLVE is a secure, online, fully searchable “powder characterization management system” built to bring all the available analytical data needed to analyze the performance of AM metal powders.
LPW POWDERSOLVE is set to be officially released at RAPID 2015, May 18-21, in Long Beach, CA.
The site automates what was once a time intensive process. Through a collection of data and analysis, Powdersolve tracks the changing properties of AM powders from the virgin state through repeated use and blending. The site orders and presents powder characterization data and lets users verify that powders consistently meet performance specifications. It also allows for accurate detection of contamination or degradation and ensures that sufficient quantities of various powders are available to meet production requirements.
The system features automation and risk control functionality to save time and eliminates the risks associated with manual data handling. It offers secure storage of all measured powder properties online and a fully searchable database. A traceability and quality control interface offers complete traceability across the lifecycle of a given powder and documents the quality assurance information needed for certification.
POWDERSOLVE is a collaboration between LPW and leading companies within the aerospace, biomedical, and automotive industries.
“With eight years of experience and a strong network of clients at the highest levels of industry, we understand that companies are looking for greater efficiency and understanding in powder specification as demands increase and powder re-use has become essential for the long term sustainability of the industry,” says John D. Hunter, General Manager of LPW Technology. “Supplementing the quality certification provided with all LPW virgin powders, with the most accurate and objective performance information available, our ultimate aim is to help end users take the intelligence and effectiveness of their company’s powder lifecycle management to the next level.”
LPW says POWDERSOLVE is “objective, bespoke, and completely confidential.” It’s an interactive interface which includes data on a variety of detailed analytical information and graphical data outputs. Access to the site comes via a secure website login to view the comprehensive powder database.
“This is a product set to change the nature of powder management in demanding production environments,” Hunter says. “We are committed to supporting the industry with objective performance information to reduce the reliance on subjectivity that has historically characterized the practice of powder re-use strategies. Providing valuable support as you shape your use of LPW POWDERSOLVE around your specific needs, our aim is to make your experience of the product as direct and as relevant as possible.”
LPW Technology is a certified provider of AM powders for specific machines or applications, and the company has developed a full range of optimized powders specifically for Selective Laser Melting (SLM), Laser Metal Deposition (LMD), and Electron Beam Melting (EBM). They also undertake the development of custom alloys upon request.
Headquartered in Runcorn, Cheshire, UK, LPW Technology Ltd. formally established a US subsidiary — LPW Technology Inc. — in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. That arm of the company provides local support and sales to customers in the US.
Do you plan to use Powdersolve.com to help you select and track metal powder materials for additive manufacturing applications? Let us know in the LPW POWDERSOLVE forum thread on 3DPB.com.