Airbus Signs Agreement to Help Singapore Agency 3D Print Aircraft Parts

Share this Article

3D printing is becoming widespread in the aerospace industry, but one of the biggest enthusiasts of the technology has always been Airbus. From satellites to robots, Airbus is using 3D printing in nearly every aspect of its business, especially its airplanes. The Airbus A350 XW3 aircraft has more than 1,000 3D printed parts in it, and recently the company created the first aircraft cabin component to be visible to passengers. Now Airbus is reaching out to help other organizations with 3D printing in aerospace.

Airbus recently announced an agreement with Singapore’s Defence Science and Technology Agency (DSTA) to develop 3D printed spare parts that will initially be trialed on Singapore’s new fleet of A330 Multi Role Tanker Transport (A330-MRTT) aircraft. This will be the first initiative under a new digital technology collaboration between the two organizations. An implementation agreement was signed at the Farnborough Air Show stating that Airbus Defence and Space will support DSTA in designing and certifying 3D printed parts for the Republic of Singapore Air Force (RSAF) aircraft.

“It is absolutely clear that digitalisation represents the future of military aircraft services and we are now at a point where we can begin to explore the most promising techniques on operational fleets,” said Stephan Miegel, Head of Military Aircraft Services at Airbus Defence and Space. “We greatly appreciate the innovative approach of DSTA in going on this journey with us. Following this first agreement on 3D-printing, we have further agreed to collaborate on data analytics for predictive maintenance. The collaboration will add on to the development of Airbus’s new SmartForce suite of maintenance data analytics launched at Farnborough.”

SmartForce is a new suite of services that enables operators to use aircraft data to improve troubleshooting, optimize maintenance effort, predict maintenance actions and plan for material demand. It will allow for significantly more efficient maintenance, freeing up resources to focus on mission execution.

Using 3D printing to create spare parts for aircraft is becoming more appealing to all aircraft manufacturers. When an aircraft needs a part replaced, rather than waiting weeks or even months for the outsourced part to become available, the manufacturer can simply 3D print it themselves, having it ready for installation within hours or days. In addition, 3D printing is capable of creating more lightweight parts than traditional manufacturing – and lightweight parts mean faster travel and more efficient fuel usage, lowering both cost and environmental impact.

Airbus is now sharing this expertise with others, including the DSTA. Singapore on the whole has been extensively pursuing 3D printing, particularly for the maritime industry. While 3D printing has been used extensively in refits, upgrades and on some military aircraft this alliance is a step forward for Singapore. Can the small but wealthy techno-state use 3D printing to customize and develop weapons? Perhaps technological edge will give tiny Singapore an outsized presence in the future of 3D printed weapons.

The RSAF has acquired the A330 MRTT and the first aircraft will be delivered to Singapore in the coming months.

[Source: Airbus]

 

Share this Article


Recent News

Registration Rates Go Up This Week for Additive Manufacturing Strategies 2021

3D Systems’ New CEO Jeff Graves Discusses His Vision for 3D Printing



Categories

3D Design

3D Printed Art

3D Printed Food

3D Printed Guns


You May Also Like

AM-Flow Raises $4 Million to Automate Handling and Quality Control in 3D Printing

With 3D printing, any and all parts could be unique, which is a key advantage of the technology. It is also presents complex challenges when it comes to such crucial...

Wabtec Brings Railway 3D Printing to Pittsburgh’s Neighborhood 91 AM Campus

Wabtec Corporation (NYSE: WAB) has announced that it will be joining an additive manufacturing (AM) focused production site called Neighborhood 91, located at Pittsburgh’s International Airport Innovation Campus. Currently under construction,...

Featured

Deutsche Bahn Explains How Mobility Goes Additive is Driving Railway 3D Printing

Our industry pays very little attention to rail, an industry that has its very own certification requirements. What’s more, due to the nature of these large vehicles, rail parts are...

3D Printing News Briefs, October 10, 2020: Xometry, 3DEO, PostProcess Technologies, Digital Manufacturing Centre

We’re all business in today’s 3D Printing News Briefs. Xometry has made two new appointments to its board of directors, and 3DEO announced another shipment milestone. PostProcess Technologies has a...


Shop

View our broad assortment of in house and third party products.