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AMT Tech Report: Issue #216

Planes, automobiles, and, finally, some trains. AM luxury goods. Speaking of how AM is used for luxury goods… machining goes plaid. AM’s jolly good for bicycles, innit?
Jul 15, 2022

Not everything which is possible makes sense.

– Mirco Schoepf

1. Planes, Automobiles, and, Finally, Some Trains

I probably talk too much about cars here, and I know I’ve mentioned planes, but now I’ve got some trains for you! This article discusses an automated profile measurement system that the German Federal Railroad uses to forecast train wheel wear and reduce the cost of maintaining its trains. The system uses a laser sensor to measure the profile of the wheel and predict wear. Advanced traintenance!

Read more here.

2. AM Luxury Goods

3D printing is becoming increasingly popular in the luxury sector as a way to create unique and customized products. It allows for a high degree of customization and personalization, which is appealing to luxury consumers – the bespoke type, not those off-the-rack or even made-to-measure plebs. Additionally, 3D printing can be used to create complex designs and shapes that would be difficult or impossible to create using traditional manufacturing methods, but we’ve known this. Here’s an interesting look at where AM is in the world of those who can live that “ultra-premium” life.

Read more here.

3. Speaking of How AM Is Used for Luxury Goods…

Researchers from Bosch have developed a 3D-printed microreactor that is able to produce chemicals on a small scale. The microreactor is made up of a series of channels that are just a few micrometers in width. These channels are used to transport reactants and products, and the small size of the channels allows for precise control over the chemical reaction. The microreactor can be used to produce a variety of chemicals, and the team is currently working on using it to produce drugs and cosmetics.

Read more here.

4. Machining Goes Plaid

Forget the Plaid models. Even base-model Teslas are dummy quick, but traditional machining can keep up with the blistering speeds of electric vehicles! The article discusses advances in machining aluminum that are helping to facilitate the shift to EVs. It notes that aluminum is a key material in EVs due to its light weight, which helps to increase range and improve performance. The article highlights several companies that are leading the way in developing new aluminum machining technologies, including Advanced Manufacturing Systems Inc. and Magna International. BTW, last I checked, you can’t get a V8-powered spindle on a machine tool.

Read more here.

5. AM’s Jolly Good for Bicycles, Innit?

In order to create world-cup-winning bikes, Atherton Bikes has brought 3D printing in-house. This allows them to design and print their own bikes, as well as create custom-made bikes for their customers. Technically Atherton doesn’t print the whole bicycle; they just print the joints of the tube frame out of lightweight titanium to fit individual customers. The rest of the frame is just carbon fiber tubing cut to the appropriate length, inserted into the joints, then epoxy bonded.

Read more here.

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Stephen LaMarca
Technology Analyst
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