What is additive manufacturing and what are the benefits for manufacturers?

Additive manufacturing works by "adding" material layer by layer to produce a 3D part or component. 

It has been around in various processes for nearly 30 years, but it started in 1986 by hardening and combining layers of photo-sensitive liquid using UV light. Although AM is well-established in the aerospace and medical sectors, it is now beginning to be rapidly adopted in the Energy and Marine sectors. The most common processes implemented are those that fuse metal layers together using an energy source, such as Powder Bed Fusion (PBF) or Directed Energy Deposition (DED).

In the videos below, LR Technical Specialist William Wistance and TWI Project Manager Amanda Allison explain more about these processes and their benefits to manufacturers.