P&G Canada, Canada Makes, and AMM Team Up to Explore Possibilities and Benefits of Metal Additive Manufacturing
To further explore the possibilities and benefits of additively manufacturing new, customized parts, and adding the technology to its supply chain, the Procter & Gamble (P&G) Canada plant in Belleville, Ontario teamed up for a little experimentation and research with the country’s foremost additive manufacturing network, Canada Makes, and Toronto-based Additive Metal Manufacturing Inc. (AMM), a full-service 3D metal printing bureau. Funding for the joint project was provided through Canada Makes’ Metal Additive Manufacturing Demonstration Program, which itself is funded by NRC-IRAP, the National Research Council Canada’s Industrial Research Assistance Program.
“AMM is delighted to be partnering with P&G and Canada Makes in assisting P&G introduce 3D METAL printing into their supply chain. P&G embarked on this journey with the full understanding that to be successful, the technology must be embraced as early as possible in the design stage. This technology is neither an alternative to subtractive manufacturing nor a replacement for it but an addition to the entire manufacturing process and allows for previously unthinkable designs and a dramatic reduction in lead times,” said Norman Holesh, President AMM.
“Design rules have changed and AMM works with its customers to help them understand and embrace these changes and take full advantage of design freedom.”
AMM is ISO 9001 and Controlled Goods certified, and provides its customers with integrated, advanced manufacturing technology solutions within the AM market, offering assistance throughout the process, all the way from design to 3D printed component parts.
Canada Makes, a network of academic, nonprofit, private, and public entities with a common goal of developing and adopting AM technology in Canada, is no stranger to working with metal 3D printing, having recently embarked on a separate partnership to manufacture a 3D printed satellite bracket.
The Metal Additive Manufacturing Demonstration Program was designed to help industries in Canada increase awareness and understanding of the many advantages and benefits of metal additive manufacturing. It also demonstrates how to produce low volume parts for multiple applications, such as repairing high performance/low cost tools and composite molds for stamping. Canada Makes works with a collection of experts in the additive manufacturing field, who provide guidance to companies that participate in the program, teaching the companies about the business opportunities and advantages, from cost saving and increased efficiency, of 3D printing technology.
“Designing and building complex parts as well as the lead-time saved are two big advantages that AM offers users of the technology,” said Frank Defalco, Manager, Canada Makes. “This project certainly was an excellent example offered through Canada Makes’ Metal Additive Demonstration Program. Canada Makes will continue to partner with Canadian companies looking to the advantages offered by having additive manufacturing as a powerful new option in creating parts previously unfeasible.”
Since 2010, P&G’s Belleville plant has consistently received a prestigious manufacturing excellence award, which is the highest recognition among P&G’s many manufacturing facilities. By adopting metal additive manufacturing technology, it’s primed to continue doing so. The example part that the plant worked with Canada Makes and AMM to manufacture was printed in stainless steel, in order to take advantage of its high anti-corrosion performance. The part was printed for a combined purpose: to deliver fluid, through the four extended legs, to designated locations, while at the same time “minimizing disturbance to the flow that it merges in.”
Haixia Jin, P&G Engineering Technical Manager, said, “Parts can be very difficult even impossible to make with traditional subtractive machining processes. Metal 3D printing offers an exciting alternative to commercial off-the-shelf parts that cannot achieve complicated design requirements or internal cavity geometry. Even in cases where commercial customization is available and able, it usually comes with significant additional cost or an unbearable long lead-time.”
Discuss in the Canada Makes forum at 3DPB.com.[Source: Canada Makes]
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