For many applications, sophisticated cooling technology is important. For gaming PCs, data centers, automobiles, LED modules, the chemical industry and many more; wherever you need to dissipate heat, heat exchangers and cooling elements are essential. Their size is often a challenge. For example, hand-held electronic devices need to house increasingly powerful technology that requires cooling. In addition, they need to integrate new functionality quickly, meaning that the heat problem needs to be solved again and again. This quickly pushes conventional production processes to their limits.
However, industrial 3D printing is different. It enables very small and complex parts to be made from alloys with favorable thermal conduction properties. As a result, heat management can be performed in a very small space. For example, CPU coolers with liquid cooling but no weak points susceptible to leakage can be mass-produced in a single piece.
Metal 3D printing is an exciting and disruptive technology. But initially I was skeptical whether its advantages would extend to meet our own requirements. Three years on, it has given us solutions for many projects that would not have been possible otherwise.