Australia’s ANCA and CSIRO developing AM process for tungsten carbide tools

July 11, 2022

Tool manufacturer ANCA has collaborated with CSIRO on the development of a new 3D printing process for tungsten carbide tools (Courtesy ANCA)
Tool manufacturer ANCA has collaborated with CSIRO on the development of a new AM process for tungsten carbide tools (Courtesy ANCA)

A collaborative research project involving Australia’s Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) and tool manufacturer ANCA, also based in Australia, has been developing a new Additive Manufacturing process for tungsten carbide tools.

Supported by the Innovative Manufacturing Cooperative Research Centre (IMCRC), the nine-month, $928,000 project reportedly enables affordable, high-performance tools to be produced using one platform, replacing the current production process of mould pressing, sintering, brazing and grinding.

Now in the advanced phase, the research is focused on refining the Additive Manufacturing technology ahead of ANCA taking the hybrid manufacturing platform to market. Dean McBain, Research & Technology Manager at ANCA, explained that the project had the potential to transform the way tungsten-carbide brazed insert tools were made in Australia and globally.

McBain commented, “ANCA’s collaboration with IMCRC and CSIRO has accelerated the development of an innovative Additive Manufacturing technology which we believe has the potential to disrupt the $2.2B global cutting tool market. Successful completion of this project will allow ANCA to commercialise the new hybrid Additive Manufacturing machine platform, grow our workforce and revenue and fill a significant gap in the global tooling market.”

Dr Kathie McGregor, Research Director for Advanced Materials and Processes at CSIRO, stated, “In keeping with CSIRO’s role of providing high-end research and development (R&D) support to the Australian industry using state-of-the-art equipment and world-class know-how, we have collaborated with ANCA to further develop a uniy James Webb Space Telescopeque technology. We expect the outcomes may enable ANCA to diversify and grow its business and provide a boost to the local economy in terms of additional job opportunities and export income.”

Dr Matthew Young, IMCRC’s Manufacturing Innovation Manager, remarked, “As ANCA and CSIRO’s R&D partnership demonstrates, additive manufacturing can generate significant benefits for Australian manufacturers, reducing costs and improving speed to market. Once developed, this revolutionary technology can be applied to a range of cutting applications, creating significant global export opportunities and furthering ANCA’s position as a market-leading manufacturer of cutting tools and equipment.”

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