What is Atomic Diffusion Additive Manufacturing (ADAM)?
Atomic Diffusion Additive Manufacturing (ADAM) is an end-to-end process that starts with a plastic-bound metal powder that is formed it into a 3D shape, a layer at a time. After printing, the part is washed in a debinding solution and sintered in a furnace. The sintering step burns off the plastic binder and causes the metal powder to diffuse together.
Three-dimensional printing with atomic diffusion additive manufacturing technology can create metal parts with high accuracy, making it a valued contribution in the manufacturing of end use parts, legacy parts, prototypes, and tooling. ADAM is a realistic and cost-effective option for small to medium runs of near net shape metal parts.
Markforged developed ADAM printers, which are churning out 3D printed parts all over the world. The Metal X is our industrial quality ADAM machine built on a fourth-generation printing platform, designed from the ground up to reliably shape beautiful metal parts.
ADAM Advantages and Disadvantages
Most parts printed with ADAM are not fully solid -- they include triangular infill. This can be both an advantage and a disadvantage -- it means lighter weight parts, at the cost of fully density. For small geometries, fully dense parts are printable.
Unlike most other metal printers, ADAM machines do not expose users to loose metal powder -- resulting in a safer, easier to use system. The machines are usable with a wide variety of materials that can be easily swapped out for one another. ADAM has the same geometric constraints as standard FDM printers.
What kinds of materials can be 3D printed with ADAM? The ADAM process can support a variety of metals. Stainless steel, tool steels, and Inconel are currently used, with copper, titanium, and other materials on the horizon.
What is the difference between ADAM and other 3D printers? Unlike extrusion printing and metal injection molding, ADAM printers layer metal additively to create an accurate, end-use part.
What is a sinter furnace? A sinter furnace is a machine that heats metal to a temperature below melting point to burn off binding material deposited during the printing processing and atomically bind the remaining metal into solid parts.
When the binder is burned off, does the part become smaller? Yes, the part is smaller, but the difference can be accurately predicted and adjusted for in the CAD file so the end result is exactly as desired.