Volkswagen plan to use 3D metal printing for mass production

Upload time:2018/9/28 viewed: 1694

Volkswagen is the first automotive manufacturer using the latest 3D printing technology: the “HP Metal Jet” process simplifies and speeds up metallic 3D printing. The world's largest carmaker unveiled plans Tuesday to start using 3D printing to mass produce car parts, including gear knobs and custom tailgate lettering.
Together with printer manufacturer HP and component manufacturer GKN Powder Metallurgy, Volkswagen is therefore pressing ahead with the development of the technology for mass production.

Dr Martin Goede, Head of Technology Planning and Development, Volkswagen, said: “Automotive production is facing major challenges: our customers are increasingly expecting more personalization options. At the same time, complexity is increasing with the number of new models. That’s why we are relying on state-of-the-art technologies to ensure a smooth and fast production. 3D printing plays a particularly important role in manufacturing of individual parts.”

A Volkswagen vehicle is manufactured from 6,000 to 8,000 different parts. Volkswagen already has 90 3D printers in its plants, which are used for the special production of individual parts or prototypes. With the additive 3D Metal Jet technology from HP, productivity improves fifty times compared to other 3D printing methods. It enable the production of a large number of parts using 3D printing for the first time, and significantly reduces the time required to manufacture parts.

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