The Fraunhofer Institute for Laser Technology (ILT) and 6K Additive, the developer of a proprietary microwave plasma production system, have partnered to create a complete life-cycle assessment (LCA) for additive manufacturing.
The study will use 6K Additive’s Ni718 powder for an industrial component manufactured on Fraunhofer ILT’s laser powder bed fusion machine (LPBF) to better understand the carbon footprint from material through the additive manufacturing process and post-processing.
According to a study conducted by Foresight Management, 6K’s UniMelt platform has delivered a 91% energy reduction and 92% carbon emission reduction for Ni718 powder compared to traditional processes.
“There are conflicting views on additive manufacturing regarding its environmental impact compared to traditional manufacturing. The goal of this study is to analyze factual data to help us understand the real environmental impact of printing a metal AM part using LPBF,” said Dr. Jasmin Saewe, Head of the LPBF department at Fraunhofer ILT.