National Centre For Net Shape And Additive Manufacturing

One of industry’s major areas of research is how lighter components, developed through the use of new manufacturing technologies, can produce more complex, lightweight parts – and produce them fast enough to meet demand, not only in the aerospace industry but across all sectors.

Additive manufacturing (AM), often known as 3D printing, is a generic term used to cover a suite of processes which create components from powder or wire, is one of the disruptive technologies that is emerging as a viable manufacturing route to achieving complex, lightweight parts in quantity.

With initial funding from the Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI) (£4.2m) and Innovate UK (£10m), this project was undertaken by the MTC to establish the National Centre for Additive Manufacturing. The aim of the National Centre is to develop production-ready additive manufacturing processes, to overcome barriers to wide-scale adoption, and to work on legislative and standardisation issues for this emerging activity. The centre, housed within the existing MTC facility, demonstrates the entire AM process chain at an industrially relevant scale, taking raw material and part designs to produce fully finished parts where every stage of the process is carefully monitored and controlled.

The Centre has delivered over 100 projects for companies across the supply chain, OEMs, Tier 1’s and SME’s and assisted SMEs with no previous experience of the aerospace sector to develop novel AM processing equipment, creating significant new market opportunities for them.

Download the National Centre For Net Shape And Additive Manufacturing case study
Short Title: HVM-AM
Project Number: 110138
Project Cost: £4,188,000
End Date: 31st Mar 2014
Time Horizon: Exploit
Lead Partner: Manufacturing Technology Centre Limited
Attributes: Environment, Cost
ATI Value Stream: Aerostructures of the future