“3D printing makes perfect sense” for select OEMs

Oak Ridge National Laboratory is witnessing growing interest in the use of 3D printing

Additive manufacturing (AM) has been present in the automotive industry for decades, but certain factors have restricted its use. Kia, for example, has been developing prototype parts used in its concept cars, like the recent Telluride concept presented at the 2016 Detroit Auto Show. BMW has also been using AM for concept car components for around 25 years, but the German OEM thinks the technique is not applicable to mass produced cars because of cost and time restraints.

Based in Tennessee, Oak Ridge National Laboratory’s (ORNL) Automation, Robotics and Manufacturing group is dedicated to developing new manufacturing technologies, allowing companies across many different industries to rapidly produce products in ways that are energy-efficient and price competitive.

Speaking to Automotive World, Lonnie Love, Group Leader, Automation, Robotics and Manufacturing at ORNL, describes a growing interest in AM. He is also confident that the high costs and slow production of AM can be overcome….

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