Dyndrite, a Chicago-based company that makes the GPU-accelerated computation engine that is used to make the hardware and software for the next generation of digital manufacturing, has announced a new partnership with MIMO Technik and ASTRO Mechanical Testing Laboratory.
MIMO Technik creates additive manufacturing (AM) solutions for clients in aerospace, rocketry, defense, and motorsport. ASTRO performs mechanical and metallurgical testing of additive materials for spaceflight hardware, launch vehicles, and satellites. The team delivers customized solutions to support essential Aerospace and Military programs. The groups qualified materials for industry primes such as Boeing, Lockheed Martin, and Northrop Grumman through the MASTRO procedure.
MIMO Technik and ASTRO chose to work with Dyndrite on the creation of the MASTRO process in order to streamline and automate a closed-loop source for additive production and validation, as well as to remain a digital manufacturing leader for primes and launch vehicle providers.
“The business case for being an open architecture metal 3D solution provider is at its core about making our customers more successful,” said Garett Purdon, Vice President of Sales – Americas at SLM Solutions. “It’s about creating choices for our customers and removing arrogance – we’re not a jack of all trades but a true master of one. We acknowledge that others can add additional value.”
Industrializing Additive Manufacturing
MIMO Technik and ASTRO use MASTRO, an internal proprietary parameter development process, to conduct experiments to determine values for all variables that affect the SLM process. Qualifying material is presently being manufactured for key components including landing gear, propulsion systems, payload structures, and military applications.
MIMO Technik and ASTRO will use Dyndrite’s software tools to codify the MASTRO construction recipes, ensuring repeatable quality and traceability. For machines, materials, and process parameters to be certified on a large scale, the build layout, serialization, and reporting must be done automatically. Due to its open architecture, ongoing support, and willingness to move forward, MIMO Technik now uses ten SLM Solutions L-PBF machines.
“Parameter development and qualification is a tedious and time consuming process,” said Steve Walton, Head of Product at Dyndrite. “Dyndrite’s tools allow users to rationally explore the parameter space of interest using their own algorithms while building upon provided tools. Our APIs are designed to support the user in these studies and algorithmically provide the build and toolpath pedigree to ensure data can be used in research, qualification, and production environments. The build and toolpath automation provided allows engineers to explore the solutions to new process problems, instead of spending energy on manual, error prone data entry.”
To date, 3D metal printing machine calibration and validation, followed by materials and process development, have been an expensive costing up to $1M, labor-intensive, and time-consuming process that frequently necessitates multi-year commitments. The goal of the partnership between Dyndrite and MIMO Technik is to be a model for validating techniques for Laser Powder Bed Fusion (L-PBF) machines that use additive manufacturing.
Dyndrite Materials and Process Development for LPBF is the company’s first end-user AM application. This GPU-powered 3D program was created for materials and process engineers working on new metal alloys and parts for laser-based 3D metal printing. It takes advantage of Dyndrite’s Accelerated Computation Engine (ACE), which can run 3D geometric queries to find and optimize difficult geometric elements like domes, cantilevers, and thin walls. It enables engineers to improve build rates by allowing them to easily work with multiple layer heights and parameter settings, improves part quality by utilizing logical APIs for distributing the process and creating toolpath trajectories, and delivers support strategies that provide maximum flexibility. Clients who use Dyndrite may also simply generate shareable build recipes, using Python, that contain all of the information needed to duplicate a build and drive a range of 3D metal printers such as Aconity, EOS, Renishaw, SLM, and others.
“Bringing Digital Additive Manufacturing to an Industrial Scale is the next step for strategic Aerospace and Military infrastructure,” stated Jonathan Cohen, CEO and Co-Founder of Mimo Technik. “Dyndrite is the platform on which we are constructing that reality. From quick material discovery to accredited aerospace procedures for our expanding AM facility, our engineers are empowered.”
“During the previous two years, we have classified dozens of materials using the MASTRO process,” stated Humna Khan, CEO and Co-founder of Astro. “Our collaboration with Dyndrite will expedite our efforts to streamline testing efficiencies and bring customers into production faster.”
Dyndrite and MIMO Technik will also collaborate to create enhanced scanpath techniques for productivity and quality on SLM machines for a wide range of alloys used by MIMO Technik’s clients.
Closed loop process control and additive manufacturing for Aerospace
The 2023 3D Printing Industry Executive Survey highlighted the demand for closed-loop process control and how for additive manufacturing to reach its potential as an industrial technology, this must be developed.
An example of building systems that move the industry closer to a solution can be seen in the takeover by Stratasys of quality assurance software firm Riven. The cloud-based software, which has been integrated into Stratasys’ GrabCAD platform, enables customers to produce more accurate prints at lower cost. Riven’s technology makes it possible to 3D print parts that are ten times more accurate than before via its Warp Adapted Model (WAM) functionality. The software lets users take part data from an initial design and use it to quickly find mistakes and fix them. This can be done with FFF, SLA, MJF, or binder jetting machines. Stratasys says that if Riven’s software is added to its closed-loop 3D printing process, its customers will be able to increase shipments of end-use parts while reducing waste and making the process more environmentally friendly by doing less iterations. James Page, founder of Riven and soon-to-be software vice president at Stratasys, said that integrating Riven’s technology into the platform would ensure users’ 3D printed reality matches the CAD file each time.
As reported last month, the Aerospace sector has seen significant advantages to using additive manufacturing. JPB Système, which makes locking mechanisms for airplanes, said it has made five million independent flight parts since it was founded more than 20 years ago. Most of the milestone figure comprises parts used to make JPB Système’s LULYLOK B-nut self-locking device and borescope self-locking plug. Both of these products are sent to aircraft engine manufacturers worldwide. Other smaller parts, fixtures, and fasteners made in the company’s production facilities that use Industry 4.0 are also included in the figure. Lock-wireless devices made by JPB Système have been used by top aircraft engine companies for more than 20 years. The company says the milestone shows 3D printing’s importance as a strong, high-quality, and easy-to-use way to make aircraft engines safer and more cost-effective.
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