Addictive Additive: Blog

Our blog carves out a place for stories that connect with AM’s big future.

September 09, 2021

Fighting Fire With Laser Fire

SLM - Firework

When he is not working on the latest and greatest additive technology, SLM Solutions Application Engineer Alexander Braune is making a difference in his community. He serves as a volunteer firefighter for his local community in Hamberge, Germany. Commonly, big cities have both a professional fire department and a volunteer fire department. When there’s a significant emergency, they often work together to ensure the community stays safe. 

It’s an important role that often requires out-of-the-box thinking. Alexander saw the need to stabilize the fire engine’s tablet when they’re in motion, often in a quick rush to come to the rescue. With that idea in mind, he got to work. After some trial and error, he created a mount for the tablet PC that was installed in the fire engine. Compared to traditional methods, Alex was able to take this piece and combine an original four-piece product into one solid part.  The best part? He used AM to print it! 

See what Alexander had to say about the printed piece: 

On using Additive Manufacturing to show, not tell… 
I decided to use AM methods to produce this part because it enabled us to create it quickly. Instead of taking the time to put together a sales pitch and a long, detailed explanation of our visions and ideas, we were able to directly produce this piece. 

On the speed of printing… 
For 60 µm 700W, the estimated build time is 8h 32m. However, if the parameters change, so does the build time.

On the lightness and strength of AM…
Other than it being cost-effective, it is both lightweight (the part weighs less than 500 g) and corrosion-resistant.

On his work in the community…
Many people ask me, “Why do you do this?”. My answer is always this quote: “If we are not coming, no one is coming.” I see it as my duty to help others whenever I can. With volunteer firefighting, I found my way to give something back to my community. And if you see the gratitude of the people, it’s worth it. I’m glad that SLM Solutions supports the volunteer firefighters in the company, especially since most of the emergency calls happen during working hours. -Alexander Braune

 SLM Solutions is proud to have Alexander on our team and even more proud of the work he does in his local community.