In SLM-Processes the melting of the pores creates spatter. This material which should have been melted into the rest of the object is then missing and a pore may be left behind. Thus the reduction of such particles is desired.

The amount of particles depends on the process parameters such as scan speed and laser power. To determine which parameters produce less spatter one needs to quantify them. This is a difficult task due to many factors influencing the ability to track spatter. They can be of all kinds of brightness, background noise, speed can create trails and smoke plumes that glow so bright that it lights up the surroundings.

My work was to quantify these spatter using video material captured using a high speed camera that my colleagues collected for me. For that purpose I built a particle detector in python with opencv and a custom object tracker in rust. Here is a small sample:

highspeed capture of spatter from the 3d printing SLM process tracking of particles from 3d printing SLM process

Since the correct object detection is very difficult in itself, this process might be conducted by a trained algorithm in the future.