GKN plc, the global aerospace and automotive engineering group, has announced the formation of GKN Additive, a new division within the company to bring its Additive Manufacturing activity together into one new brand.
GKN is a leading producer of additively manufactured parts, with aerospace components produced, certified and flying on seven major platforms today and AM parts driving in today’s cars. GKN is also a specialist metal powder and component producer through its Powder Metallurgy division.
Operating from seven global centres of excellence in four countries, GKN Additive will act as the focal point for all this activity in the future, ensuring the company continues to push the boundaries of the technology and strengthen the Group’s position in the market.
Jos Sclater, Head of Strategy at GKN, stated, “GKN Additive is an incredibly exciting venture and the potential applications for the technology are endless. The benefits of AM are significant, both for our customers and the world around us in terms of greener, more efficient production. There is also a tangible feeling that manufacturing is suddenly a very exciting place to be for the brightest and best engineering talent. That is great for the future of the industry and I am delighted that GKN Additive will be at the forefront of this revolution.”
GKN claims that producing AM components for industrial use requires four essential elements: understanding of the raw materials (metal powder); process knowledge (to decide which AM technology to use, for example selective laser sintering, powder bed or laser metal deposition); manufacturing expertise to produce the component itself; and finally the ability to certify or qualify the parts for use in industry.
“Thanks to our specialist powder business, Hoeganaes, and based on our 250 years of manufacturing and engineering experience, GKN is outstandingly placed to continue to lead in all four areas. And by bringing our AM expertise together in GKN Additive, we are not only able to continue supporting existing customers in our core aerospace and automotive markets, but also to explore entirely new AM markets too. It is an exciting step for GKN and a statement of our AM intent,” stated Sclater.