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Recap: Additive Manufacturing Deployments In Southeast Asia

Recap: Additive Manufacturing Deployments In Southeast Asia

Amid the ongoing global health issue, additive manufacturing (AM) or 3D printing is proving in real time that it is speeding production and bringing new ideas to the market at a lower cost to deliver the needed healthcare equipment and devices the world desperately needs.

In market research released earlier this year, Grand View Research Inc. reported that the overall additive manufacturing industry is projected to reach $35.38 billion by 2027, growing at a compound annual growth rate of 14.6 percent over the same forecast period. However, the 3D printing industry still has its share of challenges, such as efficiency that the process yields, the machines, and materials.

In line with this, Asia Pacific Metalworking Equipment News (APMEN), in conjunction with SLM Solutions, SIEMENS, Universal Robots, Markforged, NAMIC, and GlobalData held a two-part webinar aimed at helping manufacturers understand 3D printing better and gather insights on the way forward for additive manufacturing in Southeast Asia.

In the first installment of the two-part webinar on 24 November 2020 with SLM Solutions, Siemens and Globaldata, we covered the different AM deployments in Southeast Asia, the process challenges, and the key considerations toward successful adoption.

Where has COVID-19 left us in 2020?

Opening the session with a keynote presentation, David Bicknell, Principal Analyst, Thematic Research at Globaldata gave an insightful overview of where the pandemic has left the additive manufacturing industry in 2020. He discusses the impact of the pandemic, developments in AM and opportunities for ASEAN.

With the pandemic paralysing supply chains, David also highlights how 3D printing can be the solution to building more resilient supply chains and how more companies are embracing 3D printing. He also covered briefly insights from HP which examines the current perception of digital manufacturing.

3D printing has proved to be a source of optimism, and David rounded the session by sharing innovative feats during this challenging environment such as biomimetic tongue surfaces and printed door handles. Where would 3D printing bring us in 2021?

Key Considerations for Successful AM Adoption

Lu Zhen, Lead Application Engineer at SLM Solutions Singapore, speaks about successful AM adoption and projects worldwide—such as the 3D printed titanium brake caliper for Bugati race car—the different stages of AM adoption and market growth, and four key considerations for successful AM adoption: design, in terms of effectiveness and weight; material strength and compatibility; process scalability and repeatability; and economics or cost.

Lu also speaks about factors that would enable increasing adoption and industrialization of AM, such as systematic qualification processes and standards, specialised knowledge, IP, and having a mature supply chain.

Finally, he presents some of the AM projects in Southeast Asia, such as the anti-cavitation trim for EMERSON; core insert for plastic injection mould, for OMNI MOLD; impellers for maritime application, for ShipParts.Com; motor mount base and clutch for race cars, in collaboration with Nanyang Technological University (NTU) of Singapore; and a battery hull for submarine robots, developed in collaboration with the National University of Singapore (NUS).

3D Printed Face Shield

While the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic has stalled manufacturing activities worldwide, it has, at the same time, highlighted the speed and flexibility of 3D printing to create and deliver the desperately needed healthcare equipment and devices.

For instance, it has provided Siemens and its Industry 4.0 partners an opportunity to combine their strengths to locally develop and manufacture a face shield designed by Singapore’s Tan Tock Seng Hospital using additive manufacturing. This fully local collaboration saw Siemens’ Advance Manufacturing Transformation Centre (AMTC), supported by the Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR), HP’s Smart Manufacturing Applications and Research Centre (SMARC), and Mitsui Chemicals come together to design, optimise and manufacture the face shields in an accelerated product introduction cycle of under two months.

Benjamin Moey, Vice President, Advance Manufacturing, for ASEAN, at Siemens Pte Ltd, and also the head of Siemens’ AMTC, talks more about this in his presentation, as well as demonstrated the actual 3D-printed face shield.

Wrap Up

The webinar closed the session with a lively Q&A session between the three presenters—SLM’s Lu, Siemens’ Boey, and GlobalData’s Bicknell—with attendees asking questions on simulation technology related to 3D printing; 3D printing software; injection moulding versus 3D printing (in case of the face shield); availability of material base supply; best ways service bureaus can market themselves to attract AM clients; and whether AM will finally see the day it will be used for mass production.

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TRUMPF Presents New Solutions For Latest Trends In 3D Printing Industry

TRUMPF Presents New Solutions For Latest Trends In 3D Printing Industry

TRUMPF is increasing automation and process speeds in its additive manufacturing technologies – and its “green laser” is fueling new applications by enabling 3D printing of pure copper and precious metals. At the formnext Connect virtual trade fair, the company is showcasing new solutions for three key industry trends: speed, automation and new materials.

“The additive technologies market remains very attractive for TRUMPF,” says Klaus Parey, managing director TRUMPF Additive Manufacturing. “Customers are particularly excited by our TruPrint 1000 machine with a green laser beam source, which is designed for industrial use. Short-wavelength green laser light is the best option for welding pure copper and precious metals.” TRUMPF has made major progress in its products and solutions for additive technologies over recent months, building up a broad portfolio of products that can handle a wide variety of materials.

Process speed: new nozzle doubles coating rate

TRUMPF has developed a new nozzle technology that increases the coating speed to well over 600 square centimeters a minute, even reaching speeds as high as 1,000 square centimeters a minute in certain applications. The secret lies in using more powder, higher laser power and a nozzle designed specifically for industrial use. Applying a coating faster obviously means using more powder. But using more powder only works if it can be melted fast enough. That’s where the second ingredient in the mix comes in: higher laser powers of up to 8 kilowatts. Yet these high laser powers can only be used in tandem with a robust, properly cooled nozzle. And it’s exactly this combination that TRUMPF has brought together in its new nozzle technology, which enables significantly higher coating speeds than ever before – especially for rotationally symmetrical parts.

Automation: new depowdering station gets parts cleaner

To boost the productivity of additive manufacturing even further, TRUMPF is working hard to find ways of improving upstream and downstream work steps in the overall process chain. At formnext, the company will be showcasing a new depowdering station for the powder bed-based additive manufacturing process of laser metal fusion (LMF). This system unpacks and depowders 3D-printed metal parts, combining two process steps in one machine. Previously these steps had to be carried out manually by a machine operator using suction nozzles and brushes. But the new depowdering station makes these steps considerably simpler by introducing a degree of automation. The system turns the printed part upside down and, if necessary, starts to vibrate, until almost all the excess powder has been removed. This new depowdering process does a considerably better job of removing excess powder from the finished part.

Diverse materials: green light for copper, gold and platinum

At the formnext fair held two years ago, TRUMPF demonstrated for the first time how a disk laser in the green wavelength range can be used to print pure copper and precious metals. Conventional 3D printers that use infrared light can’t handle materials such as copper and gold, because their highly reflective surfaces prevent melting from taking place. But because green light has a much shorter wavelength than infrared, it opens the door to 3D printing of pure copper and precious metals. Since its launch, TRUMPF’s TruPrint 1000 Green Edition has carved out a solid position in the market and enjoyed tremendous success.

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SLM Technology Opportunities For Healthcare Applications

SLM Technology Opportunities For Healthcare Applications

Find out why selective laser melting is the ideal production technique to integrate function into medical device components. Article by Gary Tang, SLM Solutions.

Medical device manufacturers are increasingly adopting metal additive manufacturing technology of SLM Solutions—the pioneer and one of the inventors of selective laser melting (SLM) technology—to produce a wide range of medical and dental parts.

In the healthcare sector, SLM technology is used to manufacture functional prototypes for the serial production of surgical implants, to manufacture new designs of instruments and equipment, or utilized for mass customization, i.e. the production of patient-matched implants and prostheses on a large scale. Dental prosthetic components, and orthopaedic, spine and cranio-maxillofacial implants are all common applications of the SLM technology, with clear benefits to patient outcomes. 

Selective laser melting is the ideal production technique to integrate function into medical device components, such as printing surgical implants with lattice structures for enhanced osseointegration and reduced stress shielding. Designs optimized for SLM process, and those custom to patients’ anatomy, often create complex, bionic geometries only able to be manufactured with selective laser melting. The technology thereby provides productivity and cost advantages to users.

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Siemens Collaborates With Morf3D To Accelerate Adoption Of Metal AM

Siemens Collaborates With Morf3D To Accelerate Adoption Of Metal AM

Morf3D is collaborating with Siemens Digital Industries Software to promote the use of additive manufacturing (AM) in advanced design, engineering, and production qualification of metal-based product innovations across a variety of industries. This collaboration equips Morf3D with Siemens’ end-to-end AM software solution from the Xcelerator portfolio and makes Morf3D a preferred Siemens AM partner with access to software in advance of the market. In exchange, Morf3D will provide technical feedback to enhance Siemens’ product development.

“The goal of this agreement is to facilitate the advancement of an end-to-end digital solution and develop new strategies for advanced engineering and design,” said Morf3D CEO Ivan Madera.

“By partnering we can leverage our unique integrated system of work to accelerate the adoption of additive manufacturing for development and production of new applications in a variety of industries. Siemens and Morf3D make a good team to accomplish this goal. Siemens has the end-to-end software to drive applications from design through 3D printing, and Morf3D has the expertise in AM operations to leverage that software so we can qualify and deliver those applications with optimal efficiency.”

“Additive manufacturing is a viable technology for innovation in all industries. But, to achieve truly industrialised AM production takes more than technical capability. The industry needs partnerships like our collaboration with Morf3D, where ideas, know-how, AM technology, software and most importantly, people, come together to advance the art of the possible by rolling up their sleeves and fully delivering on new and inspiring applications,” said Aaron Frankel, Vice President of the AM Program for Siemens Digital Industries Software.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has amplified the importance of additive manufacturing as a technology for rapid-response innovation. However, the financial uncertainties brought on by the pandemic have made it more difficult for companies to invest in AM operations and application development. We want to help those companies by giving them the resources and know-how they need to realise their dreams for additive manufacturing,” said Madera.

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Where 3D Printing Makes Sense

Where 3D Printing Makes Sense

Here’s a look at how Paul Horn GmbH got its start in additive manufacturing. 

Even complicated shapes can be produced relatively easily with 3D printing.

Paul Horn GmbH launched its additive manufacturing project in spring of 2018, which led to the creation of a dedicated “selective laser melting” production area. Now, the tool manufacturer uses additive manufacturing to produce its own tools—particularly prototypes, special tools and tool holders—and to optimise coolant attachments. Having recognised the advanced possibilities offered by additive manufacturing, Horn is making these available to its customers and partners as well.

“We were captivated by additive manufacturing right from the start, and so we kept a very close eye on advances in the area of 3D metal printing. As soon as the technology had matured to the point where we could use it to manufacture precision tools, we bought our very first system,” Matthias Rommel, Managing Director of Horn, explains. “Originally, we purchased the machine for the R&D area so that we could make special tools and prototypes. During the initial period, we found that we were constantly having discussions with our customers about 3D printing. To begin with, these were purely technical; but as time went by, they led to more and more concrete enquiries for 3D-printed components. Due to the strong interest from customers, we eventually came up with the idea of setting up an additional contract manufacturing business unit for additively manufactured components. In terms of technology, we opted for a DMG Mori LASERTEC 30 (2nd generation).”

It makes sense to use additive manufacturing if it generates a technological advantage. However, in many cases, there is no economic benefit to using additive manufacturing for a component that used to be produced by conventional methods. One example would be a turned part that can be produced relatively quickly on a Swiss-type lathe. Not only that, but additive manufacturing would also be too expensive in terms of post-processing. Other disadvantages compared to conventional production include relatively poor surface quality (Rz 30 µm), accuracies down to only ±0.1 mm, and the high cost of powder compared to bar. 

Greater Design Freedom

As the complexity of a component begins to rise, additive manufacturing becomes more relevant. This may be driven by the need for lightweight design, special cooling channel layouts and small batches of components with highly complex geometry. Consequently, the disadvantages have to be weighed against the benefits of greater design freedom, lightweight construction, quick adaptability and speedier production for more complex parts. In the future, it therefore makes sense for this option to be included in the preliminary considerations as part of each design process.

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Simulation Irons Out Metal Binder Jetting Defects To Enable Mass-Production AM

Simulation Irons Out Metal Binder Jetting Defects To Enable Mass-Production AM

Simufact, part of Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division, has introduced metal binder jetting (MBJ) simulation, that is enabling manufacturers to predict and prevent the distortion that sintering processes will have on parts at the design stage for the first time. The new simulation tool marks a significant step forward for additive manufacturing because it helps manufacturers achieve the quality they require while exploiting the unique benefits MBJ offers for volume production.

Metal binder jetting is an emerging additive manufacturing technology that has several key advantages over common powder bed fusion processes; high volumes of parts can be printed with minimal spacing; no support structures are needed, and larger lot sizes are possible. It has the potential to replace low-volume, high-cost metal injection moulding for everything from automotive and aircraft parts to medical applications. Because high resolution is possible, it could also reduce the cost and lead times for production of complex and lightweight metallic parts such as gears or turbine wheels.

However, early adopters can expect a steep learning curve to learn how to achieve the quality they need to exploit these benefits. One key challenge has been predicting changes during the sintering process. A part can shrink as much as 35 percent and the simple shrinkage models used for other processes cannot predict distortion during the post-build sintering process. Until now, costly physical trials were required to perfect the printing of each part, preventing many manufacturers realising the low cost and flexibility MBJ offers.

Made available to existing Simufact Additive customers in August, the new tool extends its capabilities for MBJ processes. Manufacturers can predict the shrinkage caused by factors such as the thermal strain, friction, and gravity during sintering without specialist simulation knowledge. By compensating for these changes, parts can be 3D Printed as they are designed, and production teams can significantly reduce the proportion of parts that must be scrapped or re-processed. Sintering-induced mechanical stress is also predicted before print, indicating where defects might occur. Manufacturers can use this information to make changes earlier in their product development and reduce the need for costly redesign.

Designed for busy manufacturing professionals, the tool can automate the model setup, preparing the CAD or CAE file for manufacturing simulation and simulations can also be automated through Python scripts. To validate the sintering compensation and increase confidence in quality, the optimised geometry from the MBJ tool can be immediately compared to both the initial design (CAD) geometry and a metrology scan of a manufactured part within user interface.

“We are pleased to introduce the first solution for simulating metal binder jetting sintering process to the market so that manufacturers can take advantage of this important new method. We know customers see metal binder jetting as a pivotal technology for manufacturing, particularly where there’s a need to need to produce intricate parts at high volumes like the automotive industry.

This development was only possible through close collaboration between our manufacturing and printer equipment partners and our highly experienced research & development department,” said Dr. Gabriel McBain, Senior Director Product Management, Simufact & FTI.

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Sandvik AM Achieves Medical Certification For Its Titanium Powder Plant

Sandvik AM Achieves Medical Certification For Its Titanium Powder Plant

Sandvik’s new powder plant in Sweden has received the ‘ISO 13485:2016’ medical certification for Osprey titanium powders, now approved for use in the additive manufacturing of medical applications. “This standard will reassure our customers that Sandvik has the necessary quality management systems in place to meet the stringent requirements of the medical industry”, says Keith Murray, VP and Head of Global Sales, Sandvik Additive Manufacturing.

Additive manufacturing (AM), also known as 3D printing, is already playing a significant role in the medical segment. With additive manufacturing, implants and prostheses can be manufactured directly from an individual patient’s anatomical data. This allows these customized products to be manufactured quickly, significantly enhancing the healing process and improving the prognosis for the patient.

“Achieving the ISO 13485:2016 medical certification will allow our medical customers to complete the necessary regulatory supplier approvals when bringing a medical application to market, utilising Osprey titanium powders from Sandvik,” says Keith Murray, VP and Head of Global Sales at Sandvik Additive Manufacturing.

The properties of the metal powders used, directly impact the reliability of the performance of the AM-process, as well as the quality and performance of the finished product. This medical certification ensures that best practices and continuous improvement techniques – including the company’s development, manufacturing, and testing capabilities – are leveraged during all stages of the powder lifecycle, resulting in a safer medical device.

Complete traceability – from titanium sponge to finished powder

Product traceability is especially important in the medical industry. Sandvik offers a complete traceability for its titanium powder, made possible by having the full supply chain in-house – from titanium sponge to finished powder. The new titanium powder process uses advanced electrode induction melting inert gas atomization technology to produce highly consistent and repeatable titanium powder with low oxygen and nitrogen levels. The production facility also includes dedicated downstream sieving, blending and packing facilities – integrated through the use of industrial robotics.

Titanium has exceptional material properties, being strong yet light and offering high levels of corrosion resistance. At the same time, it is biocompatible. However, the cost and complexity of machining from titanium billet have historically restricted its use. Additive manufacturing opens up new opportunities.

Powder metallurgy is also labelled a ‘recognized green technology’ – and the net-shape capability of technologies like additive manufacturing not only means that material waste is minimized, but also that great energy efficiency can be achieved, by eliminating manufacturing steps.

The first two powders produced at the plant will be Osprey Ti-6Al-4V Grade 5 and Osprey Ti-6Al-4V Grade 23. Other alloys are available on request. In addition to the ISO 13485:2016 and AS9100D certifications, the new titanium powder plant is also certified according to ISO 9001, ISO 14001 and ISO 45001.

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3D Metalforge Partners Ultimaker To Launch SEA’s Largest Industrial FFF Print Facility In Singapore

3D Metalforge Partners Ultimaker to Launch SEA’s Largest Industrial FFF Print Facility In Singapore

Ultimaker and Metalforge has partnered for the launch of Southeast Asia’s largest industrial FFF printing facility. The new facility will offer industrial-grade, fused filament fabrication (FFF) 3D printing from Ultimaker’s professional S-Line 3D printers, providing a complete ecosystem of certified 24/7 printers, engineering materials, 3D print fleet management and 3D print preparation software. Against the backdrop of increasing demand for 3D-printed parts, this will enable 3D Metalforge to ramp up its printing capabilities for its clients in the defence, maritime, medical, and the oil and gas industries.

The print facility, located in the western part of Singapore, comprises 21 units of Ultimaker S3 3D printers. Metalforge decided to invest in FFF 3D printers with Ultimaker, due to the latter’s partnerships with large globally operating material companies through the Material Alliance, an open platform that consists of more than 45 brands and 150+ material types. This has enabled 3D Metalforge to broaden its offerings, catering to diverse needs and requirements in different sectors.  It is currently printing various parts required for COVID-19-related projects.

3D printing which is also known as additive manufacturing (AM), is suitable for such projects as there are limitations to traditional manufacturing — the challenge of tight deadlines, and rapidly changing design parameters. Additionally, AM is more suited for high-mix, low-volume production, common factors necessitated by the changes brought on by the pandemic.

“We deal with clients from blue-chip companies that have stringent criteria on the production of end-use parts. It is thus imperative that we invest in reliable FFF 3D printers that can meet our needs and benchmarking standards”, said Mr Matthew Waterhouse, CEO of 3D Metalforge.

“Ultimaker also has an open solution that allows us to work with over 150 materials. This has enabled us to experiment and/or print with the most suitable material, depending on customers’ needs. Furthermore, I am pleased with the excellent after-sales support that I have received to date,” he added.

Reported by Media Outreach.

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Metal 3D Printing Revolutionises Valve Design And Manufacturing

Metal 3D Printing Revolutionises Valve Design and Manufacturing

The emergence and maturity of metal 3D printing technology, as well as intelligent software such as CFD and CAE, are driving innovations in valve design and manufacturing. Article by Shining 3D.

A valve is a device used to control the direction, pressure and the flow of fluids (liquid, gas, powder). It is an important controlling component of a fluid power system, and is widely used in mechanical products in areas such as petrochemical, mining, power, health, electronics, robotics industries, and so on.

The emergence and maturity of metal 3D printing technology, as well as intelligent software such as CFD and CAE, are driving innovations in valve design and manufacturing. And one such development is for hydraulic manifolds.

Light-weight Hydraulic Manifold

The hydraulic valve manifold is a complicated integration, with internal passages across each other and complex inlet arrangements.

In traditional models, it is necessary to drill the hole and then to block the unnecessary drilled hole with screw plugs in order to manufacture internal-crossed manifolds.

But there exists the possibility of leakage with this kind of manufacturing method. Besides, internal pathways made by drilling are straight and have 90-degree turn. According to CFD (computer fluid dynamics) analysis results, some areas will have the problem of less flow and some will have the turbulence.

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Upcoming Webinar: AM Deployment And Future Developments In Southeast Asia

Upcoming Webinar: AM Deployment and Future Developments in Southeast Asia

APMEN will be hosting a Webinar: Additive Manufacturing (AM) Deployment and Future Developments in Southeast Asia, on 24 Nov and 15 Dec 2020. 

3D Printing On Track For Growth

Additive manufacturing (AM), or 3D printing, has been around for nearly 40 years, but it is the ongoing global health issue that has truly tested the speed, agility and efficiency of 3D printing to create and deliver the desperately needed healthcare equipment and devices. AM is proving in real time that it speeds production, allows flexibility, and brings new ideas to market quicker at lower cost.

AM or 3D printing technology is continuously growing at a fast rate due to its numerous effects on processing, and is supporting manufacturers to achieve a higher level of performance. According to Fortune Business Insights, the global 3D printing market stood at $8.58 billion in 2018, and is projected to grow at 25.8 percent annually from 2019 to 2026 to reach $51.77 billion at the end of the forecast period.

The 3D-printed materials produced are easy to modify as compared to the conventional production line, which makes this technology an advantageous choice in many aspects. 3D printing has been widely used across industries as it is cheaper, faster and more customizable, and hence reduces the cost associated with materials and labours. Increasing R&D activities in this field and growing demand for prototyping across industries such as healthcare, automotive, and aerospace and defence are some of the major factors driving the 3D printing market growth.

The Asia-Pacific market is projected to showcase fastest growth among the regions owing to government promotion of new-age technologies in manufacturing, rising demand for customized products, and the continued rise in foreign investments.

Challenges Remain

Despite having a rosy outlook, the 3D printing market is not without its set of challenges. While commercial 3D printing is gaining vital importance in the entire global manufacturing sector, the efficiency it yields is not without issues. A myriad of variables from machines to materials create production hurdles in AM. Also, parts built by additive processes today more closely resemble raw stock of a particular shape than they do machined parts. This means that secondary subtractive processes are almost always needed to achieve the final part.

In line with this, Asia Pacific Metalworking Equipment News (APMEN) will be holding a webinar on 24 Nov and 15 Dec 2020 aimed at helping manufacturers understand 3D printing better through different successful deployments, experiences gained during such deployments, and the way forward for AM in Southeast Asia.

>>If you would like to learn more about the webinar, register your interest or enquire more about the sponsorship opportunities, please CONTACT US HERE!<<

 

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