Additive Manufacturing and hybrid processing solutions provider Hybrid Manufacturing Technologies (HMT), McKinney, Texas, USA, is leading a collaborative research project, funded by Innovate UK, titled ‘Fast-track development of a novel compact wire-feed system for Laser Additive Manufacturing’ (FastWireAM). The project is supported by TWI Ltd, headquartered in Great Abington, Cambridge, UK, and Epoch Wires, Cambridge, UK.
The key aims of the project are to demonstrate the advantages of the HMT interchangeable head, using wire feedstock over subtractive manufacturing and current state-of-the-art wire Direct Energy Deposition (DED) techniques, as well as the added benefits of using Epoch Wire’s powder-cored wire feedstock. This will reportedly be validated through the manufacture of select industrial use-case components.
The new system will be located at TWI’s Yorkshire, UK, facility, where the new wire-feed system will be integrated with the company’s KUKA robot cell. TWI will lead tasks relating to process optimisation and performance mapping of the system for demonstrator production and third-party validation of its performance.