TÜV SÜD Completes First Combined Audit in 3D Printing Industry

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The TÜV SÜD Group was founded in 1866 specifically as a steam boiler inspection association, but over the years, the German testing and certification organization has broadened its focus to improve the safety and reliability of technology, systems, and expertise all over the world, contributing to high-tech innovations like autonomous driving, Industry 4.0, renewable energy, and 3D printing. Recently, the organization created a free range of checklists for coronavirus manufacturers to use in their production processes, which cover the main regulatory requirements for using AM.

It also just announced that it has performed its first combined audit in the AM industry for Sauber Engineering AG, resulting in the issuance of the ISO 9001 and DIN SPEC 17071 certificates for metal and plastics production.

Christophe Blanc, audit team leader for Industrial AM Production Site Certification at TÜV SÜD, said, “We are delighted that a TÜV SÜD audit team comprising additive manufacturing (AM) and quality management (QM) experts completed a combined audit for the first time, delivering maximum customer benefits.”

Online certificate delivery by TÜV SÜD and Sauber Engineering

Part of the Sauber Group of companies, Sauber Engineering is focused on developing new, cutting-edge manufacturing methods for high-quality components, and has one of the Hinwil, Switzerland region’s most advanced and varied machine parks, with seven SLA and six SLA polymer 3D printers, four DMLS large-frame metal 3D printers, and advanced heat treatment processes, like hot isostatic pressing.

ISO 9001 is based on several quality management principles, such as strong customer focus, process approach, motivation and implication of top management, and continual improvement. One of the basic requirements for DIN SPEC 17071 certification, which is the first guideline for QA-assured processes that defines standardized AM requirements, is proof of an effective quality management system, audited and certified by an auditor who’s been appointed by an accredited certification body. That’s why Sauber Engineering was interested in a combined audit, its AM processes would be efficiently assessed from the AM and QM expert viewpoints simultaneously.

“Receiving these two certifications is an important step for Sauber Engineering. It is an acknowledgment of the high level of quality of our work and of the consistently high standards to which our whole production process, from design to manufacturing, sticks,” said Christoph Hansen, Director Technology & Innovation, Sauber Engineering. “To undergo a combined audit in this field was a challenge Sauber Engineering successfully tackled, the smooth process demonstrating our technical expertise in this field.”

According to Matthias Herrmann, TÜV SÜD’s ISO 9001 lead auditor, AM suppliers and manufacturers need both an effective management system and good product quality to be successful. Now that the combined audit has been completed, resulting in the ISO 9001 and DIN SPEC 17071 certificates, Sauber Engineering can certify that it has both. This is good news, as the company is focusing on further developing its offering and growing its customer base in more industries.

“In my view, the business success of manufacturers in the field of additive manufacturing can only be ensured where these two components can be combined smoothly,” stated Herrmann. “With precisely this in view, TÜV SÜD now offers a new combined, fully integrated and interlocked service which confirms to manufacturers in AM that they are experts in their field.”

TÜV SÜD’s new Industrial AM Production Site Certification service pairs its knowledge of the organizational and system-related requirements that AM production companies must possess in order to run a successful business with expertise in 3D printing methods and printed products, so it can help companies, like Sauber Engineering, improve.

(Sources: TÜV SÜD, Sauber Group)

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