GE owned metal 3D printer company Concept Laser has signed a letter of intent with French aeronautical company Lauak. The alliance sees Lauak investing in Concept Laser’s additive manufacturing machines, becoming a reference customer for the patented LaserCUSING technology.
Adding to over 40 years of expertise
Lauak’s expertise within the aerospace is in the construction of fuel tanks, Aft Pylon Fairing (APF), heat exchangers and cockpit layouts. Services available at the company cover aluminium and hard sheet metal production, three types of welding (including laser welding), precision machining, non-destructive testing and surface treatment.
With over 40 years in the industry, the company is also well equipped for part certification, which is to date one of the key barriers to progress in additive manufacturing.
As explained by Mikel Charritton, CEO of Lauak, the selection of Concept Laser’s machines is part of a strategic plan for the future of aerospace manufacturing,
We see the huge potential in additive manufacturing and we want to use this technology to complete and improve our current manufacturing processes, as well as the manufacture of new components for the aviation industry.
The rapid progression of AM in aerospace
One of Lauak’s key customers in Dassault Aviation, a subsidiary of the Dassault Group that is also home to Dassault Systèmes. In recent news from Dassault Systèmes, the 3D design company has also entered into a partnership with Airbus APWorks, makers of the scandium/aluminium Scalmalloy powder used to make the frame of the Lightrider motorbike.
Concept Laser’s metal 3D printers, including the M2 machine, will become part of Lauak’s showroom to introduce the technology to existing and prospective customers. Speaking on the partnership, Concept Laser CEO Frank Herzog says,
Lauak see the potential of additive manufacturing and I’m delighted they’ve chosen Concept Laser equipment to help them on their journey. We will support them with equipment, processes and people to allow them to fulfil their objectives.
Elsewhere in aerospace, Norsk Titanium’s 3D printed metal component has made it to be the first structurally supportive part certified for commercial flight. At the 2017 Paris Airshow CFM International, a joint venture between Safran and GE, has also received $27 billion in orders for the 3D printing enabled LEAP engine.
Featured image: Concept Laser LaserCUSING metal powder ‘fusing’ technology. Photo via Concept Laser