3-D printing collaboration tackles obsolescence

Posted on 10 Jan 2019 and read 625 times
3-D printing collaboration tackles obsolescence Angel Trains, one of the UK’s leading train leasing companies, has collaborated with engineering consultancy ESG Rail and 3-D printing technology provider Stratasys (www.stratasys.com) to produce four interior components using 3-D printing.

The components include anarm rest, a grab handle and a seat-back table — all of which will be trialled on passenger trains this year.

The aim of this collaboration is to help address the issue of obsolete parts, reduce whole-life rolling-stock costs and enable vehicles to remain in service for longer.

It also has the potential to reduce costs for train-operating companies, as they can produce low-run parts as needed.

These test parts have been designed for 3-D printing and made using Stratasys’ Fused Deposition Modelling technology.

Mark Hicks, Angel Trains’ (www.angeltrains.co.uk) technical director, said: “This exciting industry-first collaboration has the potential to transform manu- facturing within the rail industry.

“We are proud to be driving this innovation with ESG Rail and Stratasys and hope that this solution will help to free the industry from technological constraints, and allow our trains to continue to meet passengers’ needs.”

Martin Stevens, head of mechanical engineering at ESG Rail (www.db-esgrail.com), added: “We have learned so much during this project and have addressed many engineering challenges.

“We believe that this emerging method of manufacturing will reduce costs, production times and issues caused by component obsolescence.”

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