Additive manufacturing: metal printing technology change

Additive manufacturing technology, also known as 3D printing technology, according to computer design model, using the method of manufacturing the material layer by layer additive products are high hopes for a comprehensive reform of the manufacturing sector. However, despite widespread media coverage, additive manufacturing has not been large-scale applications in actual production practice.
In theory, additive manufacturing techniques may create better products, including more of products, better product performance, longer life and lighter basis weight. At the same time, this technology will bring simplify the production process and process, for example, to shorten delivery times due to the production cycle much faster, more flexible choice of production sites, production tools to simplify , compared to production waste than the traditional process greatly reduced. Despite the small overall size of the market, additive manufacturing industry is growing rapidly, strong growth. Currently, the global additive manufacturing market size of about 70 billion US dollars, is expected over the next six annual compound growth rate will reach 24%, in 2021 the market size of about $ 26.5 billion.
Additive manufacturing market generally mainly thermoplastic material and photopolymer Copyright Control Engineering , only a small part of a metal material, but in recent years, metal printing this segment rapid development has brought new possibilities for the fields of industrial parts processing. Metal printing and automobile industries can meet large-scale commercial production needs in production efficiency, quality, stability and cost control, is still unknown. There is reason to believe that, once the metal printing large-scale application, will bring changes to the current industrial production. Consider involved in metal printing industry vendors and investors, should be required to Mount Li to meet the industry change may come. Competitive strategy should be based on insight into the application fields of metal printing technology and its value chain, so we can hope to grasp the short, medium and long-term industry turning point. 1. Additive Additive manufacturing value chain including manufacturing industries along the upstream, and six step manufacturing value chain service (see FIG. 2). Wherein the upstream module is particularly important, components need to be highly complex and requires a 3D model into sheet (relates to the design, scanning, printing and checking software). Currently, many enterprises to enter the value chain module.
In the past few years, companies within the additive manufacturing industry has gone through several rounds of entrepreneurship and integration CONTROL ENGINEERING China Copyright , head manufacturers establish industry leading position. Autodesk and Materialise is the most important additive manufacturing software provider, part of the company’s business involves many areas of the industry value chain, such as Stratasys 3D printer and print production subsequent processing. Part of the 3D printer manufacturers have their own production of metal powder, but with the maturity of the industry division of labor, they began to purchase special metal powder manufacturers. Expected industry value chain in the future will continue to rapidly evolve, with the decline in material costs and simplify the production process, additive manufacturing units will greatly improve production efficiency, and ultimately bring significant change in the industry. Intermediate value chain will be simplified, especially in the production and subsequent processing stage of production. The production process will be reshaping and restructuring, the development of a seamless end to end value chain. Integration can be achieved by extending the enterprise value chain or strategic cooperation between enterprises, OEM manufacturers in particular need to enhance the understanding of the value chain. Among them, intellectual property protection, software development and design capabilities is particularly important. Improve production efficiency, additive manufacturing technology to bring new products and improve product quality, will further stimulate growth in the demand side, the enterprise grasp and make good use of time to develop, and which spare parts production and refurbishment will be the two most important near-term opportunities . 2. Metal printing pioneer: Siemens and GE 2017 Nian 2 Yue, Siemens launched a gas turbine blade metal printing technology to produce, it indicates that from early design to produce the full range of post-processing of metal printing technology will bring significant changes. After
Siemens first developed for high pressure resistant capability test (including physical pressure, high temperatures and centrifugal forces) on the gas turbine blade metal printing technology sample, and the sample attached to the turbine and successfully tested in the sample, Siemens mass production of printed metal turbine blades, the turbine components market development. By integrating internal applications and production processes of metal printing technology, Siemens main benefits are as follows: to facilitate the continuous improvement of design, optimize product performance turbine blades fully grasp the core intellectual property eliminates the need for more complex aspects of the traditional production process of casting and punching, etc. eliminating the need for suppliers links, improve product margins through the application of metal printing technology, Siemens throughout the production cycle is only 18 months,Compared with the traditional production process , greatly reducing the production cycle. In addition, parts of metal printing technology can also be nurturing engineering design of other products, to prepare for the future Siemens metal printing technology to expand the product range. In addition, Siemens will also metal printing technology successfully used in the maintenance of the turbine nozzle. Earlier, the head of maintenance needs to replace most of the heads , the new head in the traditional way to reinstall. Today, through the application of a metal printing technology, to replace only a small part of the head, and then printing the metal parts can be filled. Maintenance cycle shortened from 44 weeks to four weeks, significantly improve customer service efficiency and reduce maintenance costs. GE is another metal printing technology in full production pioneer. It totaled $ 1.5 billion investment in the development of printing technology metal, of which $ 50 million for investment in a plant in Alabama, mainly produces metal print LEAP aircraft engine fuel nozzles (2020 nozzles expected output reached 35,000). Compared with conventional fuel injection nozzle 20 from the component parts, the use of metal printing techniques fuel nozzle is produced as one piece, 25% by weight, five times longer life. Nozzle to reduce the weight, bring significant decline in fuel costs for the airline industry customers. 3. Application of innovation-driven metal printing technology in spite of metal printing market is still in its infancy, GE, Siemens and Michelin / Fives’ AddUp other enterprises metal printing technology innovation success is not alone. Multi-earth metals are widely used in aerospace, automotive, marine, medical and dental, and many other industries. However, metal printing technology is mostly used in small and medium sized complex high-value components, and these components itself does not require large-scale production, GE and Siemens case is the case. One major reason is that the powder bed fusing techniques (Powder Bed Fusion) is still the mainstream, by thermal energy selectively melting metal powder layer region. Most of the market (about 80%) are used in metal printer technology. Then, a new metal printing techniques, i.e. deposition techniques directed energy (Directed Energy Deposition), is emerging. The technologySurgery and conventional powder bed fusion technology compared to a more productive and can produce more at lower unit costs and more complex parts, will further promote innovation in the field of metal printing technology. The short term, metal printing technology for large-scale production of industrial metal parts may not reality, is unlikely to fully replace the traditional production process, but the development of technology is to develop more industry opportunities. Future, many links in the traditional production techniques will be further reduced and integration, bringing to streamline the entire value chain of the industry. For OEM vendors, the software has a high degree of maturity, it is important to optimize product design and production processes. Have comprehensive capabilities across the entire value chain are also important, can be accomplished through strategic cooperation between enterprises. It will be a gradual development of the industry, companies need to rethink their business model, successfully applied to identify core competencies required for 3D printing technology.


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