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GE Additive’s first Concept Laser M LINE FACTORY systems to be delivered in Q2 2019. (Photo: GE Additive)
GE Additive’s first Concept Laser M LINE FACTORY systems to be delivered in Q2 2019. (Photo: GE Additive)

GE Additive has announced that its first Concept Laser M LINE FACTORY systems will be delivered to customers in Q2 2019.

Since GE Additive’s acquisition of Concept Laser in December 2016, the M LINE FACTORY’s design architecture, system and software have undergone extensive review and redesign in line with established GE processes and beta testing with selected customers.

As additive manufacturing transitions from a prototyping to production technology, the demand for machines increases, as does the demand on production floor space and the number of operators required to run production lines.

Existing standalone machine solutions, barely allow for economical series production. However, in contrast, The M LINE FACTORY’s modular machine architecture offers outstanding automation and reliability, which drives economical, scalable series production on an industrial scale.

During detailed rig testing and lifetime testing, a number of areas were identified for improvement and have since been incorporated into the system:

  • Improved in-machine architecture and automation
  • Enhanced serviceability, scalable modular system design and ease of service
  • Increased build volume: 500 X 500 platform
  • Onboard software system: Modularized software architecture, superior exposure strategies and real-time, in-situ process monitoring
  • Process control and thermal stability.

As introduced, part production, as well as set-up and the dismantling processes, will take place in two independent machine units. The units can be physically operated separately from one another or combined depending on each customer’s preference.

This enables production processes to run in parallel rather than sequentially, which reduces downtime considerably and in turn increasing the availability and output quantity of the process chain.

Laser ‘on’ time is heightened by separating the individual work process and the pre/post processing unit, while maintaining a fully integrated machine design.

The M LINE FACTORY automates upstream and downstream stages of the production process and provides interfaces to conventional manufacturing methods in the form of automation, interlinking and digitization.

The system forms part of GE Additive’s focus to provide additive machines that are reliable, repeatable and ready for series production.

“The positive impact the M LINE FACTORY can have on our customers’ operations and their bottom line is huge. It’s important we provide technologically advanced systems that are reliable and add value to our customers. M LINE FACTORY delivers on those commitments,” said Jason Oliver, President & CEO, GE Additive.

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