Velo3D Advances Flow Print Preparation Software

Velo3D has announced enhancements to its Flow software in order to accelerate metal 3D printing in production.


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Velo3D has upgraded Flow, its print preparation software. Driven by a powerful integrated simulation engine, Flow is said to ensure predictable print outcomes, while its native CAD workflow controls performance consistent with the design intent and significantly reduces print preparation time. Working with Velo3D’s Sapphire system, Flow enables next generation SupportFree additive manufacturing (AM) for parts previously not possible, the company says.

Flow is specifically designed for Sapphire, Velo3D’s laser fusion metal AM system. It includes tools that help with part orientation, support generation, simulated print predictions, per-surface process application, slice composer and process review. As a result, the company says it is possible to ´╗┐print complex part geometries support free, enabling volume manufacturing of parts that are otherwise impossible or uneconomical to print due to hard-to-remove support structures.

According to Velo3D, Flow can print low angles and overhangs below 5 degrees, as well as large inner diameters and tubes ranging to 40 mm without the need for supports, eliminating the need for difficult and laborious postprocessing cleanup. This capability breaks the limiting boundary of other systems that require supports for most angles below 45 degrees, constraining design freedom and limiting the number of designs that can be produced with additive technology.

Flow offers a physics-driven simulation engine optimized for process capabilities and the Sapphire system. A first print success rate of up to 90 percent is said to be possible, preventing many failed iterations.

The software’s imulation utility predicts the print outcome, applying print deformation correction and validating the execution feasibility of the print prior to starting the build process. It is said to ensure that the print outcome results in dimensionally accurate design intent.

A composer tool detects geometric features and applies the optimized print process to specific features, delivering predictable print outcomes.

The native CAD workflow enables smart selection, refinement and filtering of part features.

Flow software manages print outcome based on the design intent. With the native CAD import, the design intent is preserved, and users can optimize for target cost and quality parameters by surface. It enables selection of areas to optimize the surface finish, and others for throughput.