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Direkt metall

Mats Vikström

2019. [33] p. (Jernkontorets Forskning, D 876)

Price (SEK): 300:-

The DirektMetall project was conducted to investigate the potential significance of "Additive Manufacturing" (AM) for the manufacture of metallic components and its impact on future competitiveness. The area of transport with different vessels was identified as a suitable area for the analysis. Concretization of the issues was obtained through detailed analysis of craft components where some were selected for production as demonstrators. This approach allowed analysis of possibilities and limitations related to both the form and function of AM manufactured components. Based on this experience, opportunities and challenges related to the implementation of AM were identified in industrial contexts and its impact on existing and future value chains. The study demonstrates the possibility of significantly reducing weight per function (at least 50%) for load-bearing components. In addition, completely new opportunities are expected to integrate functionality into components with future AM production technology. The potential is clearly demonstrated in the identified opportunities that emerged in analyzes of demonstrators produced with AM.

We have identified the following areas as central with regard to the necessary efforts to create the conditions for efficient use of AM in the Swedish metal industry:

Material: The range of materials available for AM is very limited. Significant investments in the development of existing material classes for AM are needed. In addition, for future competitiveness, development of completely new materials for AM, such as amorphous materials and ceramic materials, is needed.

Design and construction: Machine-assisted design and construction need to be developed for AM. The resource flow can be influenced in a very noticeable way and can also enable resource cycling and thereby realize considerable progress in reuse.

Manufacturing: Access to scalable manufacturing processes is deemed to be crucial for efficient implementation of AM. Currently, the European and American markets are dominated by powderbased methods. The production of extremely small or very large components is nearly impossible to achieve in this way. Substantial efforts in the development of generation and handling of melt are therefore necessary. In addition, chemical composition control of manufactured components is a prerequisite for many potential applications. Control of the microstructures of metallic materials, the residual stress state of AM-manufactured products, the ability to effectively add surface layers of bi-material and to be able to produce thin insulating electrical layers within the "material" constitute other central parts in creating real technical breakthroughs based on AM technology.

Validation: Access to effective solutions for comparing designed and manufactured
components is a prerequisite for cost-effective validation. Monitoring of the melt during manufacture and feedback with automatic control of the manufacturing process and adjustment of defects is a very likely condition for a cost-effective overall solution. Provided that the challenges that exist can be solved, AM will have a very large impact on manufacturing industries in widely differing areas. Changes in value chains can also give rise to opportunities for changing the efficiency of the resource flow (materials and energy). These changes can be used to create a more resource-efficient society, provided that initiatives are run, coordinated and used in an appropriate manner.

DirektMetall is a complement to the Ramp-Up project.