Rapid prototyping is a procedure to quickly manufacture sample components.
The ultra-modern laser sintering process is used here. The laser-sintered samples are very flexible and dimensionally stable and thus very useful for mechanical experiments. The models are generated from a plastic powder which is welded together by a laser beam.
THE LASER SINTERING PRINCIPLE
During the laser sintering process, particles generally > 20 µm (Standard um 50 µm) arranged in a powder bed are molten down locally by a laser beam. They solidify when cooling down thereby creating a firm layer. After generating one layer, the powder bed is lowered by one layer thickness and a new layer of material is applied from a storage bin. Following this, the laser will generate the geometry of the next layer. At the end, the model has only to be freed from the loosely adhering powder particles.