3D Printing Makes Patternless Production a Reality in the Aerospace Industry
Large, complex parts and fully dense components are easily manufactured with reduced lead time through the integration of 3D printing in aerospace manufacturing processes. The ability to 3D print intricate castings directly from 3D CAD files – which can be modified quickly to accommodate design changes – provides greater opportunities to design parts with aerospace applications. Parts can then be cast directly from 3D printed sand molds and cores without the need for patterns, which increases design flexibility and decreases onsite storage requirements.
Series production of molds and cores is faster than pattern production and more molds can be generated at a time. There are no limitations based on the number of patterns available since you can print what you need.
Aerospace applications include the creation of castings for complex gear cases and covers, fuel tanks, transmission housings, components requiring draft free walls, lightweight engine parts, and structural hinges. Metal 3D printing systems can also directly print batches of small metal parts at scale leveraging MiM powders compatible with use in aerospace manufacturing.