Eaton’s Vehicle Group, located in Southfield, Michigan, USA, has announced that it will implement a new metal Additive Manufacturing programme as a part of its Industry 4.0 strategy to reduce development time and improve efficiency.
The company’s first metal Additive Manufacturing machine will be installed at its facility in Kings Mountain, North Carolina, USA, and global deployment of polymer Additive Manufacturing technology is scheduled to be completed by Q1 2021.
Eaton explains that the AM machines will be used to create high-quality fixtures, safety devices, automation grippers for assembly and handling, and maintenance components requiring replacement. Prototype development is following the same strategy to support faster product development trials and improve efficiency.
As an increasing number of AM machines are deployed, Eaton’s Vehicle Group has reportedly been realising further operational improvements, including lead-time reduction and cost savings.
Additive Manufacturing adds material only where it is needed and allows more advanced designs to be developed. Together, these two factors reduce the amount of post-processing needed while also reducing material cost, explains the company.
Going forward, the Vehicle Group’s AM capabilities will be used to further reduce production time and drive efficiency.
Eaton states that its mission is to improve the quality of life and the environment through the use of power management technologies and services. The company’s 2019 revenues were $21.4 billion, and it sells products to customers in more than 175 countries. The group employs approximately 92,000 staff.