Aussie Transport Companies Adopt Cold Spray Metal 3D Printing


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Titomic (ASX: TTT) has previously sold its Kinetic Fusion technology to the marine, defense, and aerospace sectors for a variety of applications, including drones. Now, the Aussie company reports that it has sold four low-pressure cold spray systems, dubbed D523s, to the transport industry—its first foray into this sector.

Kinetic Fusion is a cold spray process that prints near-net-shape titanium parts which are then machined to size. The company has very large systems attached to robot arms, but also much simpler systems such as the D523 of which it has now sold four to the “engine remanufacturing and rail transport sectors.” All systems will be used for maintenance, repair, and overhaul (MRO) in either repairing, rejuvenating, or replacing parts. Previously, the D523 had been sold to such clients as boilermaker Brauntell and oil and gas company DNC Coatings.

Titomic says that it has a focus on coatings and repairs, which is logical since the part cost is low with cold spray. It is also possible to rejuvenate parts by applying new material over worn areas. Additionally, users can use the process to harden components, apply corrosion-resistant coatings to them, and repair larger objects fairly quickly. The largest Titomic systems can cost over $1 million, but you’d probably be surprised at just how accessible their low-cost systems are. The company mentions that all four in total represented revenue to the tune of $314,900. So that’s a surprisingly affordable unit price.

“The sale of these four D523 systems into the Australian transport industry expands the reach and highlights the universal need for the in-the-field servicing capability provided by these systems. The D523 system’s capability of making parts, repairing damaged or corroded parts, and general maintenance on-site in a quick turnaround time, ultimately leads to higher profitability for users and secures their supply chains. The sales of the D523 systems follow on from the Dycomet acquisition in December last year, enabling Titomic to be the only global supplier of low, medium, and high-pressure cold spray systems. With this ability, Titomic can partner with businesses across multiple regions in the engine remanufacturing and rail transport sectors by offering technology which compliments those existing manufacturers. These D523 sales also validate our market orientation, as we’re beginning to fulfil the strong and growing demand for efficient and effective repairs and servicing – a need that has long existed in the market. These four system sales prove that we’re building and growing our commercial network, which we expect will lead to exponential sales growth,” said Titomic Managing Director Herbert Koeck.

It is a good sign that the firm can offer these affordable systems as seen above but can also then upsell customers on much larger machines, such as the TKF mounted on ABB robot arms. The same system can also be mounted on a gantry to increase its build volume even more.

Australia may be far away, both in distance and in the imagination, for the broader 3D printing industry. However, this local firm can sell four of these systems within its own national borders. It may be nice to chase Airbus, Lockheed, and Volkswagen, but there are many smaller firms that could really use additive manufacturing in production. Our industry really should focus more on the right companies in the right niches, including smaller businesses. MRO, rejuvenation of engines, industrial coatings, and transport generally are much bigger markets together than the large automotive companies. Titomic is showing us that there is a lot more territory to be explored in 3D printing.

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