Table of contents:
- Weight reduced by 70%
- Picture gallery
- High costs per kilogram of material
- Potential for aerospace
- Article files and article links
Video: 3D Printing From Metal
A lightweight titanium insert - that sounds contradictory at first. However, thanks to a novel metal 3D printing solution, the two companies Atos, a leading international provider of digital services, and Materialize NV, a leading provider of software and solutions in additive manufacturing and 3D printing, were able to develop a new type of titanium for space vehicles, whose mass has been reduced to a third. The joint approach offers both companies the opportunity to offer high-quality and innovative solutions in 3D printing.
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Weight reduced by 70%
Marta García-Cosío, Head of Mechanical Engineering at Atos Spain, says: “We are proud of this innovation. By creating this complex product as a metal additive manufacturing in such a short time, Atos and Materialize are among the leading providers of metal 3D printing solutions. The weight reduction enables many useful devices to be used in satellites and leads to significant cost savings with every launch.”
The heavy-duty inserts serve as attachment points to lift large and heavy structures. The fact that Atos and Materialize reduced the weight of the component to a third of the original weight improves some properties and the overall performance of the material. Both companies used modern techniques for topology optimization and the design of lattice structures to reduce the mass of the insert from 1454 g to 500 g.
High costs per kilogram of material
In the aerospace industry, these uses transmit high mechanical loads in structures such as satellites. The brick-shaped inserts usually consist of aluminum or titanium, since they are manufactured by machining. They are complete solids, which increases their mass beyond what is necessary.
Thanks to additive manufacturing, the interior of the objects can remain hollowed out or filled with lightweight structures. Filling material is only used when it is necessary. Each kilogram of material in orbit currently costs around $ 20,000. Every gram saved opens up new possibilities.
The designers were faced with the challenge of improving traditional concepts. The design had to meet the requirements of space travel from the concept phase to production. Atos' expertise in aerospace and structural simulations has helped design the exterior and interior of the component and improve its overall performance.
The Atos and Materialize team consists of experts in aerospace, computer aided engineering, construction, materials science and additive manufacturing.
Potential for aerospace
The titanium insert was manufactured by metal 3D printers in a process known as Selective Laser Melting (SLM). Metal 3D printing has great potential for aerospace because it reduces lead times and does not require any additional tools. Materialize has produced two assignments in its Bremen center of excellence for metal 3D printing, thereby demonstrating its expertise in advanced manufacturing in production and software development.
The partnership between Atos and Materialize in the area of 3D printing for high-end engineering services is, according to the two companies, unique in Europe. The aim of the collaboration is to be able to help experts and users to use additive manufacturing on an industrial level. In the future, they should be able to use solutions for 3D printing from conception to production; supplemented by advanced engineering.
The company's development teams continue to work together to offer an end-to-end solution. Atos and Materialize form a powerful combination for future manufacturing projects.
The novel titanium inserts were created as part of the “Additive Manufacturing Hot Bonded inserts in sandwich structures” study, which was written by both companies and was presented at the ECSSMET in autumn 2016. The results should contribute to the increasing use of metal components from additive manufacturing in the aerospace industry. (sh)
Hannover Messe 2017: Hall 6, Stand K01 (Atos)
Article files and article links
Link: Questions about lightweight construction? Our user meeting provides answers
Link: Link to the registration for the user meeting lightweight construction 2017
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