Airbus Helicopters has announced plans to expand its Additive Manufacturing capabilities by establishing a new AM centre in Donauwörth, Germany. Trumpf will provide metal Additive Manufacturing machines for the facility, in addition to the ones already used by Airbus Helicopters to produce structural components made of titanium and high-strength aluminum.
Airbus Helicopters will initially use the new facility to produce components for the electric-powered CityAirbus concept and an experimental high-speed Racer helicopter, as well parts for the Airbus A350 and A320 passenger aircraft, among others.
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“With innovative manufacturing processes, we are working on the helicopters of the future in Donauwörth. Among other things, 3D printing helps reduce the weight of components,” stated Helmut Färber, Site Manager of Airbus Helicopters in Donauwörth.
Additive Manufacturing allows entire assemblies to be built as one component, saving further weight and offering unique opportunities to designers and engineers. This ability to produce assemblies as a single component can also lower costs and help save fuel.
“Additive Manufacturing saves expensive raw material and can lower production costs in the aviation industry. 3D printers only use the material that designers actually need for their components and that ends up taking off in the aircraft,” added Richard Bannmüller, CEO Trumpf Laser and System Technology.
“With its manufacturing know-how, Trumpf is a reliable partner to the aviation industry worldwide,” continued Bannmüller. “Our 3D printing systems are a key technology on the path to sustainable flying and they reduce dependency on long supply chains.”