Legal and Regulatory

TÜV SÜD performs its first ever combined AM/QM audit on Sauber Engineering

Global certification firm TÜV SÜD has announced that it has completed its first combined additive manufacturing audit on Swiss motorsport-focused engineering company Sauber Engineering.

The combined audit was conducted as part of a new service offered by the firm, dubbed the Industrial AM Production Site Certification. Sauber has now been awarded two certificates, one according to ISO 9001 and the other according to DIN SPEC 17071, for the production of metal and polymer parts.

Christophe Blanc, audit team leader for the Industrial AM Production Site Certification at TÜV SÜD, states: “We are delighted that a TÜV SÜD audit team comprising additive manufacturing (AM) and quality management (QM) experts completed a combined audit for the first time, delivering maximum customer benefits.”

Sauber helped in the development of Alfa Romeo's F1 car, which contains 143 3D printed parts. Photo via Alfa Romeo.
Sauber helped in the development of Alfa Romeo’s F1 car, which contains 143 3D printed parts. Photo via Alfa Romeo.

Product quality and management effectiveness

TÜV SÜD believes that the success of manufacturers and suppliers in any 3D printing supply chain is determined by two things: the quality of the product and the effectiveness of the quality management system. According to Matthias Herrmann, ISO 9001 lead auditor at TÜV SÜD, long-term business success can only be ensured when these two concepts are combined seamlessly.

In light of this, the Industrial AM Production Site Certification was conceived – a service designed to assess additive manufacturing processes from both the AM and QM viewpoints simultaneously. It is intended to confirm to manufacturers that they are indeed experts in their respective fields of additive manufacturing production. The certification draws on expertise in both 3D printed products and 3D printing methods while incorporating organizational and holistic system requirements for a more comprehensive management system audit.

ISO 9001 and DIN SPEC 17071

The two specifications both set out criteria for the aforementioned ‘effective quality management system’. DIN SPEC 17071 is the first-ever process guideline that defines requirements for additive manufacturing, specifically, meaning it is of particular interest to manufacturers dealing with industrial 3D printing systems. It assesses a number of parameters, including personnel, workflow documentation, materials, and processes. With Sauber having gained both certificates, it is now able to offer its services to a wider client base in previously unavailable fields.

Christoph Hansen, Director Technology & Innovation at Sauber Engineering, explains: “Receiving these two certifications is an important step for Sauber Engineering. It is an acknowledgment of the high level of quality of our work and of the consistently high standards to which our whole production process, from design to manufacturing, sticks. To undergo a combined audit in this field was a challenge Sauber Engineering successfully tackled, the smooth process demonstrating our technical expertise in this field.”

Members of TUV SUD and Sauber Engineering during an online meeting. Image via TUV SUD.
Members of TUV SUD and Sauber Engineering during an online meeting. Image via TUV SUD.

3D printer manufacturer Ultimaker and materials specialist LEHVOSS Group also recently jointly received a first-of-its-kind printing process certification from TÜV SÜD. The certification, voluntarily commissioned by the two partners, specifically covers the 3D printing process of LEHVOSS’ LUVOCOM 3F filaments on Ultimaker’s S5 Pro Bundle, which features the S5 FDM system.

In a bid to ensure 3D printed COVID-19 devices are adhering to the strict quality requirements medical devices are usually subject to, the certification firm also recently drafted several checklists for 3D printing processes and provided them to manufacturers throughout the pandemic. Beneficial for testing laboratories, healthcare specialists, and the public, the lists have been supplied free of charge since September.

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Featured image shows a TÜV SÜD conference hall. Photo by Kubi Sertoglu.