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Laser Powder Bed Fusion: Optimising LPBF Parameters

Master laser powder bed fusion (LPBF) processes and influencing parameters, and optimise metal additive manufacturing results.

An abstract image depicting powder bed fusion consolidating materials together. The top of the image is black, with blue patterns at the bottom.
  • Duration

    3 weeks
  • Weekly study

    3 hours
  • 100% online

    How it works
  • Included in an ExpertTrack

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Understand and optimise LPBF additive manufacturing parameters

Powder bed fusion uses electron beams or lasers to melt and fuse material powder together. Laser powder bed fusion technology (LPBF) works very well with metals, allowing manufacturers to accurately produce parts with complex shapes.

Since LPBF is so effective in metal additive manufacturing (3D printing), it’s being used more and more often. To ensure high-quality 3D printing of metal components, professionals in the additive manufacturing sector must have a good understanding of the process parameters that can influence production.

This three-week course will give you an overview of these process parameters when using lasers, and how to optimise them when investigating new materials.

Get to grips with metal additive manufacturing basics

Delving into melt pool formation, you’ll learn what happens at the macro-, meso-, and micro-levels.

You’ll cover basic processes, factors influencing melt pool formation, and keyhole and conduction melt modes to help further your knowledge of metal additive manufacturing.

Take a closer look at LPBF additive manufacturing parameters

After developing a good grounding in LPBF 3D printing basics, you’ll unpack the different parameters that influence the process and products, including environmental and material considerations.

Optimise LBPF 3D printing processes

Finally, you’ll look at optimisation strategies for down- and up-facing surfaces, and at parameter optimisation for new materials.

You’ll be guided by the experts at EIT Raw Materials to ensure you finish the course with the skills and knowledge to get the best possible results on any LBPF project.


  • Week 1

    Laser powder bed fusion process

    • Introduction

      Let's get to know each other and take a quick look at additive manufacturing or 3D printing.

    • Laser powder bed fusion and its unique process conditions

      How can metal parts be manufactured with LPBF? What makes LPBF process conditions so unique?

    • Melt pool formation

      What is happening during the melt pool formation at various scales? Which factors are important for melt pool formation and melt pool morphology?

    • Week 1 wrap-up

      Time to reflect on what you have learned this week.

  • Week 2

    Overview of LPBF parameters

    • Categories of LPBF parameters

      An overview of important LPBF parameters, divided in four categories.

    • LPBF process and environment parameters

      Which process and environment parameters need to be taken into account when producing metals with LPBF?

    • LPBF material and part parameters

      Which material and part parameters need to be chosen carefully when producing metals with LPBF?

    • Week 2 wrap-up

      Time to reflect on what you have learned this week.

  • Week 3

    Optimization of LPBF parameters for new materials

    • Optimization of single line tracks

      Discover how single line tracks can be used during the optimization process for new materials.

    • Optimization of part density and residual stresses

      Discover how LPBF parameters are optimized to produce dense 3D parts and to reduce or avoid residual stresses in the parts.

    • Other optimization strategies

      Discover some of the new strategies to increase productivity while still maintaining a good part quality.

    • Week 3 wrap-up

      Time to reflect on what you’ve learned this week.

    • Final test

      Time to test if you've understood all three courses of this ExpertTrack correctly.

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Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Describe what happens during melt pool formation: which physical phenomena take place at macro-scale, meso-scale and micro-scale.
  • Explain how keyhole melt mode and conduction melt mode are formed and identify influential parameters for them.
  • Describe process parameters, environmental parameters, material parameters and part parameters that are important in LPBF.
  • Explain how LPBF parameters can be optimized when investigating new materials.
  • Identify strategies for optimizing the surface quality in down-facing and up-facing surfaces and for increasing the productivity.

Who is the course for?

This course is designed for engineers, researchers, and managers in the metal additive manufacturing sector, as well as anyone else interested in optimising LBPF parameters to process new materials.

Who will you learn with?

I am professor at the Mechanical Engineering Department of KU Leuven in Belgium, where I am leading the Additive Manufacturing team.

I am a research associate at the Additive Manufacturing group of Mechanical Engineering Department of KU Leuven University and I research on process and materials in metal additive manufacturing.

PhD researcher on Additive Manufacturing of metals at the Department of Mechanical Engineering, KU Leuven

Who developed the course?

EIT RawMaterials

Initiated and funded by the EIT (European Institute of Innovation and Technology), a body of the European Union, EIT RawMaterials is the largest European raw materials partnership.

KU Leuven

KU Leuven is Belgium’s oldest and largest university. The Additive Manufacturing group in the Mechanical Engineering Department of KU Leuven has a history of 30 years in research on Laser Sintering of polymers, Laser Powder Bed Fusion of metals and Additive Manufacturing of ceramics. Over the past decades, our research experience has been transferred to master students during regular courses, but also to industrial partners during other symposia and lectures.

About this ExpertTrack

Discover the potential of additive manufacturing for business opportunities, sustainability, process optimisation, and more.

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