GKN Sinter Metals starts automotive series production with 3D printing system
Its name is MetalFAB1; it is 6.5 meters long, 1.9 meters wide and 2.5 meters tall. Its job: the first Additive Manufacturing machine in the automotive industry, to enable the series production of precision parts for engines and transmissions. Its home: GKN Sinter Metals Engineering GmbH in Radevormwald, Germany. That is where Guido Degen, SVP Advanced Engineering and Dr. Simon Hoeges, GKN AM Director, started a new era in Metal Additive Manufacturing (AM) when they pressed the famous red button on Thursday, November 10, 2016.
GKN Sinter Metals will use the MetalFAB1 to produce small and medium-sized series of complex automotive components for the original equipment and replacement parts markets. Customers include most of the leading automakers and their system suppliers. The MetalFAB1 can simultaneously print hundreds of parts in one batch, meaning on one single build plate. Simon Hoeges: “Depending on how many data sets we feed into the MetalFAB1, these can be 300 identical or 300 different parts. This gives us unprecedented production capacity and flexibility.”
The integrated and automated 3D printer with the highest productivity through multiple lasers is manufactured by the Dutch company Additive Industries b.v. In a joint development program the technology is further optimized for the needs of the automotive industry.
GKN Sinter Metals once again reinforces its leadership position as innovation pioneer in the area of metallurgy in materials, processes and systems engineering with this multi-million Euro investment. With the MetalFAB1, GKN Sinter Metals is in a position to offer its customers all around the world complex and creative product solutions in next to no time.
About GKN Sinter Metals
GKN Sinter Metals is the world’s largest producer of precision powder metal products. With a focus on superior delivery, quality and total solutions, the company offers extensive technical expertise in design, testing and various process technologies. GKN Sinter Metals offers a full range of complex shapes and high strength products for automotive, industrial and consumer markets worldwide. The company’s global footprint spans more than 13 countries across five continents. GKN Sinter Metals is in close proximity to its customers with more than 30 global locations and more than 6,000 employees.
About GKN plc
GKN plc is a global engineering group. It has four divisions; GKN Aerospace, GKN Driveline, GKN Powder Metallurgy and GKN Land Systems, which operate in the aerospace, automotive and land systems markets. Over 56,100 people work in GKN companies and joint ventures in more than 30 countries. GKN is listed on the London Stock Exchange (LSE: GKN) and recorded sales of 7.7 billion GBP in the year to 31 December 2015.