During the powder bed fusion AM process, the melt pool is the volume of molten metal created when the laser or electron beam moves across the top of the powder bed.
Metal additive manufacturing
Any 3D printing process that builds metal objects in layers, typically by binding or fusing powdered metal, or by depositing molten metal from wire or powder.
These processes extrude a filament through a nozzle, which moves in CNC-controlled x-y pattern to deposit material in layers. The part moves to a sintering furnace removing the remaining plastic and sinter the metal particles together.
Available in numerous metal alloys, this is the workpiece used in powder-based 3D printing machines.
Metal powder bed fusion (MPBF)
This AM process employs a laser to melt metal powder on the top layer of a powder bed. Also called laser powder bed fusion or direct laser melting.
Minimum feature size
Minimum feature size is governed by a machine’s or process’s resolution in the x and y directions. Often mentioned in the same discussion as build resolution, which is defined by layer height (z-axis resolution).