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Electron Beam Freeform Fabrication, EBF3

Additive freeform manufacturing where continuous supply of metal wire is melted by an electron beam in a vacuum chamber.

Illustration of Electron Beam Freeform Fabrication, EBF3

The process

The object is built in a vacuum chamber [1] and utilize the energy source of an electron beam [2] to melt a continuously supplied metal wire [3].

The focal point of the electron beam melts the workpiece surface together with the metal wire fed. Both electron beam and whire nozzle is moved according to a cross section of the CAD model to byild the complete layer. The liquid metal solidifies as soon as the electron beam is moved.

The process is repeated layer by layer until the object is completed.

Finishing in the form of surface treatment is often required.

Advantages and disadvantages
In comparison with alternative methods
Best for complex and complete products
Good mechanical properties
Need for subsequent processing is less
Not available commercially
Requires a high degree of vacuum