3D Printing Takes On New Automotive Dimensions

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Additive Manufacturing News

3D Printing,Auto Production,SME

I’ve been covering the auto industry since 1989, first as CNN Detroit Bureau Chief, then as the National Auto Writer for the Associated Press, General Motors beat writer at the Detroit News and video reporter at Automotive News.

The notion of cars and trucks being built up as they snake along assembly lines may seem so 2024 in time as automakers, suppliers and an array of innovative tech companies find new ways to send vehicle production to the third dimension.

“As the auto industry is moving towards more of a lightweight focused hybrid or even electrified vehicle platforms additive manufacturing plays into that so well because it allows really efficient ways of creating efficient designs,” explained Willig, in an interview. “As you might have needed three parts before now you can optimize the design and make one and make it more efficient and put material where you need it and therefore it's lighter and stronger and more flexible.

“The lasers will then create a layer by layer by layer by essentially welding them using the layers so we have a layer of powder that goes down until you get it. By the way you get the finest detail, great density of the material,” explained Charlie Grace, chief commercial officer for Nikon SLM, in an interview.

“We really started with these brands that had the most value-add and also low volume so that we could support with a lower amount of scale upfront,” said Czinger. The McLarens, the Aston Martin's, we can hit home runs there by saving 20%, 30% of mass, making those hundreds of units or single digit thousands of units but then each of those expands into a larger brand within that umbrella.

 

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