3D Printing

3D printed race car heads to Birmingham’s Thinktank

A race car that competed in the 2015 24 Hours of Le Mans and featured a host of 3D printed parts will be on display at the Thinktank at the Birmingham Science Museum from 28th July for six weeks. A 300 km/h DOME S103 prototype fielded by British racing team Strakka Racing, the car was also featured at the round the clock Le Mans endurance classic last year.

In the case of this car, 3D printing was used to create parts for use on the track. The parts are made by Strakka using a special printer from Stratasys.

“This project is a good example of how 3D printing could change the way we build racing cars,” said team principal Dan Walmsley. “Strakka has shown that parts made on printers can be just as durable as normal pieces, but we can make them faster and without expensive tooling. We could even make new parts in the garage at the track.”

Having 3D printed almost 5% of  the S103’s parts, the team behind the car has been a frontrunner in the application of 3D printing technology in the motorsports world; from creating scale models for wind tunnel testing to parts for the actual car.

Lisa Stallard, manager at Thinktank, Birmingham Science Museum said, “It is fantastic to be able to display a race car that has had such an international impact to our Thinktank visitors this summer. Our iconic car and motorbike collections are always popular and by displaying the Le Mans car next to them we hope visitors will enjoy seeing the contrast between the technological changes.”

“We are always looking for ways to showcase how developments in the scientific world, like 3D printing technology, can have a positive impact and invoke change, and Strakka’s Le Mans car is a brilliant example of this happening in the automotive industry,” Stallard concluded about the innovative new vehicle.