Laser Metal Deposition

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  • Wire feed laser deposition -


Machine Design Webinars

How 3D Metal Printing Saves Time and Lowers Costs: DED for Repair of Industrial Components

Event Date: Thursday, March 7, 2019 Event Time: 2:00 PM ET | 11:00 AM PT Hosted by: Machine Design Sponsored by: Optomec REGISTER NOW


Directed energy deposition (DED), also called laser metal deposition (LMD) or laser engineered net shaping (LENS), is a 3D metal printing process that creates a metallurgically bonded, fully dense part that typically requires little to no post-processing. It is one of the fastest metal AM processes available today.

DED has emerged as a dominant metal AM process used in a wide range of industries for applications such as new builds, existing part modification, repair, remanufacturing of worn parts, and enhancement of part material properties.

This webinar will focus on:

Basics of the DED process. Some unique capabilities of the process that separate it from traditional manufacturing methods or other AM processes. A review of some specific examples where DED was used for the repair of parts from several different industries. At the conclusion of this webinar, attendees will have a better understanding of the basics of the DED process, some advantages it offers over traditional manufacturing methods and what sets it apart from other metal AM processes, and be able to cite some specific examples of DED use in part repair applications from a number of industries.

Tom Cobbs LENS Product Manager Optomec

Lucas Brewer LENS Applications / Customer Support / QA Manager Optomec

Jeffrey Crandall Additive Manufacturing Research & Applications Senior Engineer Connecticut Center for Advanced Technology

Can't join us for the live event? We've got you covered. Register now, and we'll send you the on-demand viewing link shortly after the broadcast.


  • 2.2 kW laser, 120 cm3^3/hr
  • Compare: [1]

The Ultimaker desktop 3D printer, for example, lists its print speeds as follows: With a 0.25 size nozzle, it can deposit up to 8 mm3/s, a 0.40 nozzle can deposit up to 16 mm3/s, a 0.60 nozzle up to 23 mm3/s, and a 0.80 nozzle can deposit up to 24 mm3/s = 1440 cubic mm / hr = 1.4 cubic cm per hr. 100x slower than the above laser, and 100x slower than an industrial grade printer.

An example of a professional 3D printer, the SLM Solutions 500HL specs list the build speed for its two-laser version as 55 cubic centimeters/hour, and its four-laser version as 105 cubic centimeters/hour.

  • Compare to 5 lb/ 24 hr of Lulzbot Moarstruder plastic AM. 2 kg or 2000 cc. So about 100 cc/hour - which is competitive with industrial grade printers.


  • Good paper showing some state of art dimensional capacity. Laser wire can do 1 mm vertical features. 400W CW laser - [2]. IPG laser - [3]
  • 855W laser power was acceptable - [4]c
  • 6 kW pulsed laser - [5]
  • Exploration of bead size as a function of power at constant weld speed - [6]. Varied weld speed would have been useful to observe lower limit of bead size.
  • Laser-wire energy efficiency is only 2-5% - so very costly. Wire arc efficiency is 90%. -[7]
  • Wire Feed Metal Deposition - melting MIG wire and extruding molten MIG wire. Interesting for low-cost application. [8]. Contact author for results - [9]
  • Full paper on generations of laser wire processes - [10]

Micro Laser Metal Wire Deposition

  • 700 micron walls doable. - [11]