GKN Sinter Metals started a new era in additive manufacturing (AM) this week when the first AM machine in the automotive industry to enable series production of precision parts for engines and transmissions started production at its plant in Radevormwald, Germany.
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 series production of precision parts for engines and transmissions. Its home: GKN Sinter Metals GmbH in Radevormwald, Germany. That is where Guido Degen, SVP Advanced Engineering and GKN AM Manger Dr. Simon Hoeges started a new era in 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 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.
The MetalFAB1 is the first integrated metal additive manufacturing machine.