Groupe Meloche to carry out additive manufacturing projects for big names in aerospace

Canada’s Groupe Meloche, an OEM aircraft and aerostructure component supplier, has signed a 3D printing partnership agreement with French metal additive specialist FusiA Impression 3D Métal.

Advancing an initiative “to deliver world-class performance” and cut “manufacturing turnaround times,” the companies will work together to complete additive manufacturing projects for some of the largest global brands in the industry.

According to Hugue Meloche, President and Chief Executive Officer of Groupe Meloche, “This strategic partnership enables us to add additive manufacturing technology to our offering and gives us a competitive edge in our mission as a world-class aerospace integrator.”

Additionally, FusiA hopes to leverage Groups Meloche’s expertise to establish “a true 4.0 factory.”

Powder bed fusion solutions

Founded in 1974, Groupe Meloche clientele includes the likes of Bombardier, Airbus and Boeing. With a $17.5 million investment made at the closing of 2017, the group is set to deliver several new aircraft for these customers over the next few years, including work for the LEAP engine powered Boeing 737 MAX and the Airbus A320neo.

FusiA, on the other hand, is the metal additive manufacturing branch of French aerospace manufacturer Freyssinet Aero Equipement SA. Under the Addup Solutions venture from Michelin and the Fives Group, FusiA is working on the SOFIA research program, set up to find industrial solutions for metal AM, or “SOlutions pour la Fabrication Industrielle Additive métallique.”

The company focuses on optimization techniques for powder bed fusion technologies/additive layer manufacturing (ALM), working with EOS M 280 and M 290 machines for fabrication.

The EOS M 290 metal 3D printing system. Photo by Beau Jackson for 3D Printing Industry
The EOS M 290 metal 3D printing system. Photo by Beau Jackson for 3D Printing Industry

Competition runs high

As competition runs high in the aerospace industry, Airbus and Boeing are doubling down efforts to integrate time and cost-saving additive manufacturing solutions for their next generation aircraft.

Global technology, engineering and advanced manufacturing enterprise Arconic recently announced a multi-year 3D printing research agreement with Airbus, and Boeing has entered a partnership with Oerlikon to standardized the use of metal 3D printing for aerospace.

Normand Sauvé, Vice President of Innovation and Infrastructure at Groupe Meloche comments,

‘3D printing is part of our goal to deliver world-class performance to our customers in terms of quality, on-time deliveries and manufacturing turnaround times.”

In addition Cyrille Chanal, President of FusiA, explains, “With the signing of this agreement, we are well positioned to penetrate this rapidly growing sector more rapidly thanks to Groupe Meloche’s expertise and its sustained march towards establishing a true 4.0 factory.”

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Featured image shows the Boeing 737 MAX. Photo via Boeing Co.