Global engineering technologies company Renishaw (www.renishaw.com/additive
) supported the Brunel University London racing team in its 20th year of participating in the Formula Student
Renishaw contributed its metal additive-manufacturing (AM) expertise to help Brunel Racing create a manifold part for its BR-XX car, which was used to compete in FS-UK (at Silverstone) and FS-ATA (in Italy) in July.
Formula Student is Europe’s “most established educational motor-sport competition” and is run in the UK by the Institution of Mechanical Engineers.
Before working with Renishaw, the Brunel Racing team had produced carbon-fibre and fabricated aluminium manifolds, but these had limitations due to their design geometry.
This year, the team worked on a more ambitious design that included additional features such as dual-stage fuel injection, as well as improved port matching between the exhaust manifold and the engine to increase efficiency.
Brunel Racing gave Renishaw the original design geometry for the manifold part and then worked with the company to optimise it for production on a multi-laser RenAM 500Q AM system.
This included splitting the part into smaller assemblies and eliminating overhangs where possible.
Matthew Crouch, a mechanical-engineering student and one of the managers of the Brunel Racing team, said: “Renishaw’s expertise and advice on how to design a part for the additive manufacturing process were invaluable.
"AM proved itself to be a much more suitable manufacturing method than a traditional approach.
"The final part performs better in the car due to its increased strength, and we also had the added benefit of reduced post-processing.”
Joshua Whitmore, an applications engineer at Renishaw, said: “The applications of AM are broadening into ever more industries.
In many examples, it offers clear benefits over traditional manufacturing methods, as you can simplify the manufacturing process or increase part performance.
"The growing use of multi-laser machines, such as the RenAM 500Q, allows for higher build rates, vastly improving productivity and lowering cost per part.”