ZEISS works with Brazil-based partners to evaluate AM processes for the oil and gas industry

May 21, 2021

A compact heat exchanger made from stainless steel AISI 316L additively manufactured in SENAI Innovation Institute for Manufacturing Systems and Laser Processing (Joinville-SC) in a project with UFSC, and PETROBRAS (Courtesy PETROBRAS/SENAI/ZEISS Group)

ZEISS Group, headquartered in Oberkochen, Germany, reports that it is collaborating with the non-profit, private research and technology organisation SENAI, based in Brazil, and with the energy company Petróleo Brasileiro S.A. (PETROBRAS), also based in Brazil, which specialises in oil and gas. The aim of the research alliance is to develop and validate methodologies for the manufacturing and qualification of static as well as dynamic critical components for the oil and gas industry within the next two years.

The research will focus on the evaluation of Laser Beam Powder Bed Fusion (PBF-LB) as well as Laser Beam Directed Energy Deposition (DED-LB) Additive Manufacturing processes that are already used in the production and repair of components such as valves, flanges and heat exchangers.

Of significant importance for economical production of these parts, according to Dr Edson Costa Santos, Senior Application Development Manager Additive Manufacturing Process & Control, ZEISS IQS Germany, is “a precise understanding of powder ageing and the influence of powder degradation on defects in the final parts.”

By using multiscale multitool computed tomography strategies, the research alliance are applying a scientific and technical approach for rapid parameter development and process stability. As part of the jointly defined roadmap, the research and industrial partners are specifically collaborating on the following:

  • Selection of high-added value and critical components of the oil and gas industry for on- and off-shore environments
  • Raw material (powder) processability, recyclability, traceability, and quality control
  • Faster development and optimisation of processing parameters for laser-based Additive Manufacturing of parts by employing a new and robust experimental method
  • Application of mechanical, wear, and non-destructive tests (NDTs) on the additively manufactured parts

By 2023, the international consortium aims to achieve tangible impacts in the Brazilian AM market through intensive results and technology transfer and to positively change the supply chain of the oil and gas industry in the medium to long term. The companies explain that as the parts needed in this market are often produced locally and on demand, the companies will then also act more sustainably.



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