Metal 3D printing (SLM)

    Metal 3D Printing allows the fabrication of highly complex geometries which would be impossible to fabricate from any other traditional manufacturing process

    Metal 3D printing (SLM)

    Additive Manufacturing technology allows the production of parts up to 60% lighter in weight than conventional processes.

    Some of the materials available in Metal Additive Manufacturing have higher resistance properties compared with machining or even casting materials.

    It is also a process that uses the exact amount of material needed; no waste or scrap is generated thus resulting is energy saving during the entire building process which is why it is considered a “Sustainable & Ecological” technology.

    What is metal 3D printing?

    Metal 3D printing uses metal alloys as a raw material in the form of powders and a high-powered laser device melts and joins the particles layer by layer until a 3D object is formed.

    How does it work?

    A 3D CAD model of the part to be fabricated is needed to allow best build orientation; a 3D software program analyses the geometry and information is then organized and translated generating a slicing and hatching format which is then loaded onto the SLM machine with the order to build.

    In the metal printing machine, layers of metal powder are spread over one another whilst a high-power laser melts the metal particles and fuses them together simultaneously building the part and supports.

    When the part is built, the excess of metal powder is collected to be reused; depending on the metal alloy processed, the part is sometimes taken through secondary operations such as machining, thermal or isostatic procedures, surface finishing, etc.

    Applications of metal 3D printing

    It is the ideal technology for the fabrication of complex metal geometries as it provides almost unlimited design possibilities. The cost of manufacturing this type of parts depends on their volume and overall dimensions, not their complexity. We highlight some ideal applications for this technology:

    • Functional prototypes
    • Parts with complex geometry
    • Lightweight structures for use in aerospace and aeronautics
    • Inserts for tools and molds with internal cooling channels
    • Tools for production
    • Rigid housings
    • Pipelines
    • Spare parts
    • Heatsinks
    • Heat exchangers
    • Manufacture of short series of parts

    Advantages of metal 3D printing (SLM)


    The product design freedom offered by metal 3D printing makes it easy to improve the functional characteristics of parts by allowing design outside the subtractive box.


    Lighter designs are obtained through topological optimization that improves stiffness and weight, the use of internal lattice structures, emptying and the reduction of mechanical assemblies thanks to the manufacture of a set of parts at once.


    Welding processes, critical during assembly, are eliminated as they require a very demanding inspection and quality control on a regular basis. It reduces assembly times, costs and optimizes the counting and management of parts.


    Production of optimized geometries for fluid flows, such as cooling or heating channels, which cannot be achieved with conventional manufacturing technologies now a day.

    Materials for metal 3D printing (SLM)

    It uses Steel alloys, hard steel, stainless steel, titanium, aluminum among other most common and highly demanded materials and from various applications such as medical, automotive, aerospace and industry in general.

    We offer various state-of-the-art materials for the manufacture of metal-printed parts. On this page we present the main materials with which we work and their most relevant characteristics, if you need a special material do not hesitate to contact us.

    It is an aluminum-based alloy, it has a wide application in the additive manufacturing industry, where prototype and series parts and components are manufactured.

    This alloy has good electrical and thermal conductivity with great resistance to corrosion, thanks to its mechanical properties and its very low weight makes it ideal for applications in automotive, engineering, aerospace, and industry in general.

    Ti6Al4V ELI (Grade 23)

    It is an alloy of titanium, aluminum, and vanadium, of high purity and one of the most used, it has a low content of oxygen, carbon and iron.

    This alloy has a high resistance to corrosion and is very suitable in the biomedical application of medical implants, automotive and aerospace. High resistance to fatigue and corrosion.

    HX (Hastelloy X)

    It is an alloy based on nickel, chromium, molybdenum, and iron.

    Very important alloy with an excellent combination of resistance to oxidation and high temperatures, where industries such as aerospace, energy and chemicals are its main fields of application. This material is characterized by its good ductility and high resistance to cracking.


    It is a chromium-nickel alloy. This material has very good resistance to fatigue, traction and breakage.

    An important alloy in aviation, as aircraft engine parts can be made, just as in the gas industry, to make turbine parts that require high temperature resistance. It is a material with excellent qualities in resistance to oxidation. Its excellent quality allows its application in various industries from energy, petrochemical, and aerospace.


    It is a tool steel (Maraging Steel) with a high content of nickel alloy.

    It has many applications thanks to its high performance and resistance. Some outstanding characteristics are its tenacity and resistance to traction among others. Its field of application to mention a few is the automotive, aerospace and injection molds.


    Stainless steel, a material with high acceptance in the world of additive manufacturing due to its ease of processing and use as a starting point for getting started in this technology.

    Stainless steel is well known for its good mechanical properties and its great resistance to corrosion, at high temperatures, which gives it a use in various sectors such as the automotive, environments susceptible to corrosion and the food industry, to name a few.

    Do you need help for your project?

    If you need light metal parts, complex parts manufactured quickly and cheaply or parts with mechanical properties similar to castings, or need more information, contact us.
    INEO PROTOTIPOS S.L. Design, prototyping and additive manufacturing.
    Avenc del Daví, 6 Pol.Ind.Can Petit Terrassa, 08227 Barcelona Spain
    Tel. +34 937 337 000 Email: