Editorial


 

SHARE:  

Hybrid Metal-AM Technology on the Move

Friday, November 3, 2017
 

For nearly 2 years now, 3D Metal Printing has reported solely on the application of metal additive manufacturing (AM)—the technology surrounding the machines, materials, design software, post-processing equipment and techniques, etc., used to develop prototypes and production parts. We’ve delved deeply into the increased use of nickel superalloys and other materials for printing jet-engine parts, metal AM for repair and rebuild, and direct laser sintering of titanium for aerospace components. In addition, we’ve reported on the use of metal AM in other industries, including medical, electronics, automotive, and oil and gas.

Other articles published in these pages have discussed how AM shops are reducing component weight by optimizing design structure, and how AM can streamline the production process and result in rapid production at reduced cost, while easing the development of customized products.

A series of articles penned by our Q&A-column author Caitlin Oswald focused on how the design freedom enabled by AM negates the constraints of tooling and machining. And, we’ve reported regularly on the R&D efforts underway to spur the use of metal AM.

The global AM market is expected to grow considerably over the coming years. There’s little doubt that this growth will spur a fundamental shift in the manufacturing supply chain wrapped through and around numerous industries.

This trend will be evident at the FABTECH tradeshow, scheduled for November 6-9 in Chicago, and home to a new 3D/Additive Manufacturing pavilion. The pavilion is a natural fit, as some 30 percent of attendees visiting previous FABTECH shows have stated an interest in AM. Besides featuring exhibitors offering printers, powders, design software and other AM-related products, FABTECH also will feature AM-related technical presentations and networking events. (Learn more in our article highlighting the new pavilion and the technology to be displayed, beginning on page 18).

Of note: On Monday, November 6, beginning at 2 p.m., SME vice president of events and industry strategy Debbie Holton moderates a panel discussion on the development of hybrid additive machines (which combine additive and subtractive technologies).

If my discussion with Ken Sabo, senior director of additive manufacturing and materials at Concurrent Technologies Corporation (CTC), is any indicator, I’d expect hybrid technology to lead the way in growing the application of metal AM. As you’ll learn in my article beginning on page 14 of this issue, Sabo sees “the appetite growing rapidly for metal AM in repair applications and for rebuilding of large parts—these are exciting, emerging opportunities.”

I hope you enjoy the CTC article, the FABTECH preview article and the other articles appearing in this and coming issues of 3D Metal Printing. Please share your thoughts by e-mailing me at bkuvin@3DMPmag.com.

 


Reader Comments

There are no comments posted at this time.

 

Post a Comment

* Indicates field is required.

YOUR COMMENTS * (You may use html to format)

 
YOUR NAME *
EMAIL *
WEBSITE