Press Release

ZEISS to Present Solutions for Optimizing Additive Manufacturing Processes

With its solutions for process optimization, ZEISS enables improved output in the 3D printing process chain.

24 April 2018

Oberkochen/Germany | 24 April 2018 | Industrial Metrology

From medical implants to aircraft turbines – there is a wide range of potential applications for industrial 3D printed metal parts. At the Control trade fair in Stuttgart, Germany from 24 through 27 April 2018, ZEISS will present metrology and microscopy solutions for increasing the number of in-spec parts and revenue in a special Additive Manufacturing area.

"We assume that an increasing number of critical components will be manufactured with 3D printing. Efficiency depends largely on how well companies understand and monitor the additive manufacturing process chain," says Dr. Claus Hermannstädter, who is responsible for Strategy and Business Development at the ZEISS Industrial Metrology business group. "Laying the foundation for the necessary process expertise generally requires years of investment." In Hermannstädter's experience, detailed analyses of materials and processes can significantly reduce the number of iteration loops. At Control, ZEISS will present a large number of solutions that provide a more in-depth understanding of upstream and downstream 3D printing processes and enable companies to closely monitor then.

ZEISS 3D ManuFACT – The holistic, integrated process for additive manufacturing.

ZEISS 3D ManuFACT – The holistic, integrated process for additive manufacturing.

Before printing: microscopes for material inspection

One important issue for quality assurance is powder characterization, because the powder bed fusion process requires the use of powders with very strict specifications concerning size, shape and material properties. At the booth in Hall Four, ZEISS will demonstrate how users can employ light and electron microscopes to conveniently inspect the quality of the metal powder in use. "In order to speed up these inspections, ZEISS has developed correlative techniques that bridge the gap between light and electron microscopy and give customers a better understanding of the material characteristics," says Dr. Robert Zarnetta, who is responsible for Industrial Applications at the ZEISS Microscopy business group.

After printing: solutions for defect detection and process optimization

In addition to microscopes, ZEISS will also present optical 3D scanners, CT scanners, high-resolution X-ray microscopes and coordinate measuring machines for detecting printing defects as well as downstream processing problems. For Zarnetta, the CT scanners showcased at the special Additive Manufacturing area at Control are especially well-suited for checking the interior structure of components and identifying defects or dimensional errors. Suitable optical and X-ray-based systems can be used to inspect the outer and interior surfaces.

According to Hermannstädter, comparing the measurement data acquired across all manufacturing steps allows companies to more quickly determine if downstream processes, including heat treatment and removing components from the build plate, affect the part's final dimensional characteristics. This information assists with optimizing the entire manufacturing process.

Spanning all stages of production: ZEISS PiWeb

In addition to the broad hardware portfolio from ZEISS, Hermannstädter und Zarnetta emphasize that software also plays a key role in additive manufacturing: the quality data management software ZEISS PiWeb enables all information to be correlated and statistically evaluated across the entire process chain. "At Control, ZEISS will demonstrate how users can build on their experiences in the traditional manufacturing environment with ZEISS PiWeb software in order to speed up additive manufacturing process development and hence improve overall performance," says Hermannstädter.

PRESS CONTACT Bernd Balle ZEISS Industrial Quality Solutions


ZEISS is an internationally leading technology enterprise operating in the fields of optics and optoelectronics. In the previous fiscal year, the ZEISS Group generated annual revenue totaling 8.8 billion euros in its four segments Semiconductor Manufacturing Technology, Industrial Quality & Research, Medical Technology and Consumer Markets (status: 30 September 2022).

For its customers, ZEISS develops, produces and distributes highly innovative solutions for industrial metrology and quality assurance, microscopy solutions for the life sciences and materials research, and medical technology solutions for diagnostics and treatment in ophthalmology and microsurgery. The name ZEISS is also synonymous with the world's leading lithography optics, which are used by the chip industry to manufacture semiconductor components. There is global demand for trendsetting ZEISS brand products such as eyeglass lenses, camera lenses and binoculars.

With a portfolio aligned with future growth areas like digitalization, healthcare and Smart Production and a strong brand, ZEISS is shaping the future of technology and constantly advancing the world of optics and related fields with its solutions. The company's significant, sustainable investments in research and development lay the foundation for the success and continued expansion of ZEISS' technology and market leadership. ZEISS invests 13 percent of its revenue in research and development – this high level of expenditure has a long tradition at ZEISS and is also an investment in the future.

With over 40,000 employees, ZEISS is active globally in almost 50 countries with around 30 production sites, 60 sales and service companies and 27 research and development facilities (status: 31 March 2023). Founded in 1846 in Jena, the company is headquartered in Oberkochen, Germany. The Carl Zeiss Foundation, one of the largest foundations in Germany committed to the promotion of science, is the sole owner of the holding company, Carl Zeiss AG.

Further information at

ZEISS Industrial Quality Solutions

ZEISS Industrial Quality Solutions is a leading manufacturer of multidimensional metrology solutions. These include coordinate measuring machines, optical and multisensor systems, microscopy systems for industrial quality assurance as well as metrology software for the automotive, aircraft, mechanical engineering, plastics and medical technology industries. Innovative technologies such as 3D X-ray metrology for quality inspection round off the portfolio. In addition, ZEISS Industrial Quality Solutions offers a broad global spectrum of customer services with ZEISS Quality Excellence Centers close to its customers. The company is headquartered in Oberkochen. Production and development sites outside Germany are located in Minneapolis in the USA, Shanghai (China) and Bangalore (India). ZEISS Industrial Quality Solutions is part of the Industrial Quality & Research segment.

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