Dassault Systèmes and Airbus APWorks GmbH have announced the formation of a collaborative partnership aimed at advancing the use of Additive Manufacturing for large-scale production in the aerospace and defence industry. According to the companies, the partnership will leverage Dassault Systèmes’ 3DEXPERIENCE platform and APWorks’ consulting, engineering and production expertise to further develop the virtual validation of the Additive Manufacturing process.
Dassault Systèmes and APWorks reportedly hope to extend the capabilities of the ‘Co-Design to Target’ industry solution experience to develop an integrated process that provides digital continuity for all engineering parameters necessary for the Additive Manufacturing of a part across the value chain. According to the companies, this is expected to make the AM process, from design optimisation up to production, replicable and scalable.
The next generation of aerospace parts are becoming lighter and more reliable, in part thanks to AM. As increasingly sophisticated designs, new high-performance materials and faster machines emerge, the use of Additive Manufacturing is being extended beyond creative product design and prototyping to gain traction as one of the key industrial manufacturing processes worldwide. Virtual technologies can help to accelerate large-scale adoption; Dassault Systèmes’ and APWorks’ new end-to-end process will deliver a single source of data to address upstream material design and downstream manufacturing processes and testing.
The integration of 3D design combined with engineering and simulation to optimise parts for AM will enable standardised parameters, making it easier for the technology to meet certification standards. Subsequent steps such as testing, optimisation and Additive Manufacturing of a part can then be matched to the identified parameters. Original equipment manufacturers can optimise their conceptual designs by connecting with their supply chains to perform virtual validation during each phase and detect problems before a part is produced.
“The 3DEXPERIENCE platform is a first important step to replicable and scalable serial production,” stated Joachim Zettler, CEO, APWorks. “Simulation can help to predict and avoid part failures. The aviation industry is safety-oriented and new product introductions typically take time. With the virtual validation of the Additive Manufacturing process, we can expect certified serial additively manufactured parts.”
“Virtual technologies and Additive Manufacturing are enabling the industrial world to do more with less waste, weight and costs, as well as freeing designers to explore complex shapes that could not be manufactured using traditional processes,” added Michel Tellier, Vice President Aerospace & Defense Industry, Dassault Systèmes. “Only by reducing the distance between real and virtual to zero can the industry build and experience the future. Dassault Systèmes is joining efforts with leading-edge innovators in this field like APWorks to accelerate technology adoption in the industry.”
In addition to aerospace and defence, the collaboration will target potential applications in the automotive and medical industries, as well as in robotics and mechanical engineering.