Additive Manufacturing Material Handling System
Load. Unload. Screen. Return-to-use metal powders with high bulk densities at high rates.
Volkmann’s Additive Manufacturing and Material Handling and Recovery System (AMMHAS) greatly enhances additive manufacturing machines handling metal powders and toxic materials.
The AMMHAS system offers three operations to the additive manufacturing system:
- Recovery of any unused material
- Screening of the material
- Returning the material to the machine or a container for future use
It is available as a mobile unit or a fixed floor-mounted assembly. Developed with Volkmann’s pneumatic vacuum technology, it offers contained transfer of material from pick-up locations to the manufacturing unit, and then through the capture, integrated screening and return-to-use stations. This high level of containment meets potential environmental issues, and addresses operator safety in all applications. It has successfully been used in operations using metals and materials such as tungsten, cobalt, silver powder, iron, stainless steel, alumina, nickel chrome, copper, chrono K20, carbide dust, corundum and G.62 with bulk densities ranging from 93 to 341 lbs/ft3.
Operation in Normal Air or Inert Gas
The AMMHAS works in both a normal air environment and under an inert gas. Where inert transfer is required, the system is designed in a “closed loop” so that inert gas is both contained and reused, avoiding the additional cost of large volumes of inert gas. In this version, a special configuration gas-tight electric pump is used to maintain system temperature and containment.
Size to Fit the Application
The size and rate of the AMMHAS are specific to the application, with the vacuum pump type and size confirmed after testing in our lab. Conveying rates are based on stainless steel powder (500 kg/hr). The filtration system offers a primary continuous clean cycle with alternating filters, including a secondary HEPA 14 filter and there is a powder-lock discharge double-valve option.
Schematic showing raw material loading and return to use, as well as build box unloading.