Cost Estimation of Laser Additive Manufacturing of Stainless Steel

Heidi Piili*, Ari Happonen, Tapio Väistö, Vijaikrishnan Venkataramanan, Jouni Partanen, Antti Salminen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articleScientificpeer-review

74 Citations (Scopus)
372 Downloads (Pure)


Laser additive manufacturing (LAM) is a layer wise fabrication method in which a laser beam melts metallic powder to form solid objects. Although 3D printing has been invented 30 years ago, the industrial use is quite limited whereas the introduction of cheap consumer 3D printers, in recent years, has familiarized the 3D printing. Interest is focused more and more in manufacturing of functional parts. Aim of this study is to define and discuss the current economic opportunities and restrictions of LAM process. Manufacturing costs were studied with different build scenarios each with estimated cost structure by calculated build time and calculating the costs of the machine, material and energy with optimized machine utilization. All manufacturing and time simulations in this study were carried out with a research machine equal to commercial EOS M series equipment. The study shows that the main expense in LAM is the investment cost of the LAM machine, compared to which the relative proportions of the energy and material costs are very low. The manufacturing time per part is the key factor to optimize costs of LAM.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)388-396
Number of pages9
JournalPhysics Procedia
Publication statusPublished - 2015
MoE publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
EventNordic Laser Materials Processing Conference - Lappeenranta, Finland
Duration: 25 Aug 201528 Aug 2015
Conference number: 15


  • analysis
  • costs evaluation
  • Laser additive manufacturing
  • stainless steel


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