Renishaw supplies metal AM machine to RAF Wittering

November 8, 2022

Renishaw has supplied a RenAM 500Q Flex metal 3D printer to Royal Air Force Wittering Squadron for use in its Hilda B Hewlett Centre for Innovation (Courtesy Renishaw)
Renishaw has supplied a RenAM 500Q Flex metal AM machine to Royal Air Force Wittering Squadron for use in its Hilda B Hewlett Centre for Innovation (Courtesy Renishaw)

Renishaw, Wotton-Under-Edge, Gloucestershire, UK, has announced that it recently supplied a RenAM 500Q Flex metal Additive Manufacturing machine to the Royal Air Force Wittering Squadron, Cambridgeshire, UK, to improve the squadron’s component manufacturing capabilities.

The squadron will reportedly use the new metal Additive Manufacturing machine, along with other AM and scanning equipment, at its new Hilda B Hewlett Centre for Innovation. The AM machine will enable the RAF to produce custom-built structural aircraft components for rapid repairs and its arrival marks the Force’s first steps into advanced component manufacturing.

The Hilda B Hewlett Centre for Innovation is part of the No 71 Inspection and Repair Squadron, which is based at RAF Wittering. Its main role is to repair damaged structures on UK fixed-wing military aircraft and provide specialist inspection capabilities. The squadron has its own designers that provide specialist repairs, and the RenAM 500Q Flex will enable it to reproduce aircraft components with microscopic precision for defence applications that require the highest accuracy.

Following the opening of the new facility, Renishaw supplied the RenAM 500Q Flex, which produces high-quality parts with added flexibility when changing powder. It features four lasers that address the entire powder bed, as well as automated powder recycling capabilities and a compact footprint. These capabilities enable engineers at the facility to create the highly accurate components required in this industry, while delivering savings for metal component volume production. The squadron’s engineers will use it alongside several new systems, including a Nikon HTX 540 CT scanner and other Additive Manufacturing machines.

“The new centre really is the heart of RAF innovation, and introducing Additive Manufacturing could one day enable the RAF to create and repair vital components that will keep their planes in the sky,” stated Stephen Crownshaw, AM Business Manager EMEA at Renishaw. “Being part of the Air Force’s new journey into advanced component manufacturing is a glowing endorsement of the accuracy and quality of Renishaw’s product offering, and we look forward to working with RAF Wittering as it develops the new facility and grows its AM capabilities.”

Sqn Ldr Allen Auchterlonie, Commanding Officer for No 71 (IR) Squadron, commented, “One day, the Royal Air Force could manufacture custom-built structural aircraft components for rapid aircraft repairs. This technology has endless possibilities in supporting and delivering air power and the opening of this facility is a landmark in this exciting journey.”

Renishaw has supplied a RenAM 500Q Flex metal AM machine to Royal Air Force Wittering Squadron for use in its Hilda B Hewlett Centre for Innovation (Courtesy Renishaw)

In the latest issue of Metal AM magazine

Download PDF

Extensive AM industry news coverage, as well as the following exclusive deep-dive articles:

  • Metal AM in the aerospace sector: from early successes to the transformation of an industry
  • Slowly but surely: Industrialising metal Additive Manufacturing the Norwegian way
  • Hot Isostatic Pressing and AM: How to improve product quality and productivity for critical applications
  • The convergence of Additive Manufacturing and Artificial Intelligence: Envisioning a future that is closer than you think
  • ADAXIS: On a mission to reduce the layers of complexity in robotic Additive Manufacturing
  • Exploiting your metal Additive Manufacturing data assets: Faster industrialisation and new revenue streams

The world of metal AM to your inbox

Don't miss any new issue of Metal AM magazine, and get the latest industry news. Sign up to our twice weekly newsletter.

Sign up

Discover our magazine archive…

The free to access Metal Additive Manufacturing magazine archive offers unparalleled insight into the world of metal Additive Manufacturing from a commercial and technological perspective through:

  • Reports on visits to leading metal AM part manufacturers and industry suppliers
  • Articles on technology and application trends
  • Information on materials developments
  • Reviews of key technical presentations from the international conference circuit
  • International industry news

All past issues are available to download as free PDFs or view in your browser.

Browse the archive

Looking for AM machines, metal powders or part manufacturing services?

Discover suppliers of these and more in our comprehensive advertisers’ index and buyer’s guide, available in the back of Metal AM magazine.

  • AM machines
  • Process monitoring & calibration
  • Heat treatment & sintering
  • HIP systems & services
  • Pre- & post-processing technology
  • Powders, powder production and analysis
  • Part manufacturers
  • Consulting, training & market data
View online
Share via
Copy link
Powered by Social Snap