The metal surface coatings applied to orthopaedic implants allow a 3D interconnected array of pores throughout the coating thickness, which in turn helps to promote bone tissue ingrowth and provide long-term stability of the implant. The traditional processes used to apply these coatings include sintering and plasma spraying. The introduction of Direct Metal Transfer (DMT) 3D Metal Printing Technology by TLM however, provides a number of significant benefits in terms of the strength and porosity characteristics of the finished product. TLM Laser Ltd has an exclusive distribution agreement with InssTek Gmbh for their comprehensive 3D metal printing products.
DMT 3D metal printing technology is one of the most advanced generative manufacturing processes. This technology melts commercially available metal powders using a high power laser and produces complex metal structures from a 3D CAD file. It is one of the latest 3D metal printing technologies and is classified according to ASTM standard in the category of `Directed Energy Deposition`. Compared to the more widely recognised `Powder Bed Fusion ́ Technology, DMT 3D metal printing technology uses a wide range of commercially available industrial metal powders. The new technology brings a number of benefits when applied to the manufacture of Orthopaedic implants.