Software company Valuechain, Daresbury, Cheshire, UK, has received £960,000 in funding from UK Research & Innovation towards the development of Artificial Intelligence (AI) within its Additive Manufacturing production control software, DNAam.
Launched in July 2017, DNAam was developed in collaboration with Airbus UK to standardise aerospace AM production processes and enable scalability in the aerospace sector. This project looks to further develop the platform to integrate AI which can optimise AM processes by analysing multiple data sources.
Tom Dawes, Valuechain CEO, stated, “Through our collaboration with Airbus UK we have developed DNAam into the global market leading production control solution for aerospace AM. With this project, we are looking to be able to model big data captured from multiple sources such as ERP systems; AM plant, equipment and sensors; and material analysis software; to understand correlations between powder properties, plant / sensor parameters, part complexity and production builds and generate AM optimisation insights.”
The development is expected to see Valuechain build on its long-standing partnership with UK-based AM company, FDM Digital Solutions, to open an Innovation Centre at FDM’s Lancashire facility, where the technology developed through the Innovate UK funding will be trialled prior to commercialisation.
Graeme Bond, CEO at FDM Digital, commented, “Valuechain’s DNAam technology has enabled us to streamline complex aerospace traceability and provide business intelligence that will accelerate FDM’s growth in the global AM industry.”
Valuechain offers several software solutions for the advanced manufacturing sector, including ERP systems, CRM, and data visualisation tools, which the company believes will enable further advancement of the AM sector. Dawes added, “With the work we’re doing with our supply chain collaboration platform, we’re looking at the secure sharing of best practice knowledge and processes throughout complex multi-tier supply chains.”
“This UKRI innovation funding and partnership with FDM, combined with some of the work we’re already doing will enable us to deploy AI to optimise and scale AM throughout the global advanced engineering sector.”