Additive manufacturing material enables Airbus to design lightweight aircraft parts

Airbus is now using the ULTEM 9085 resin material for 3D printing from Stratasys to produce flight parts for its A350 XWB aircraft.

Content Dam Ils Online Articles 2016 11 Stratasys

Aircraft manufacturer Airbus (Blagnac, France) is now using the ULTEM 9085 resin material from 3D printing (also known as additive manufacturing) solutions developer Stratasys (Eden Prairie, MN) to produce flight parts for its A350 XWB aircraft.

The ULTEM 9085 resin is certified to an Airbus material specification and used in Stratasys' fused deposition modeling (FDM)-based additive manufacturing solutions. By combining a high strength-to-weight ratio with flame, smoke, and toxicity (FST) compliance for aircraft flight parts, ULTEM 9085 enables production of strong, lighter-weight parts while substantially lowering manufacturing costs and production time.

Content Dam Ils Online Articles 2016 11 Stratasys
(L-R) Amos Liebermann, director of aerospace strategic accounts at Stratasys EMEA; Olivier Cauquil, head of material and parts procurement at Airbus and chairman of the Airbus Group Material Board; Andy Middleton, president at Stratasys EMEA; and Mark Walker, vice president of procurement strategy and governance at Airbus.

"In 2014, Airbus produced a significant amount of parts on its Stratasys FDM-based 3D printers for use in new A350 XWB aircraft, enabling Airbus to meet delivery commitments on time," says Andy Middleton, president at Stratasys EMEA. "We are pleased to support Airbus as they industrialize the inclusion of Stratasys 3D printed parts in the A350 XWB production supply chain, ensuring that suppliers will be able to support continued scheduled aircraft deliveries."

Additive manufacturing brings new levels of efficiency and flexibility to production supply chains by enabling parts to be produced on demand and at locations optimized for delivery to final assembly lines. It also significantly improves the buy-to-fly ratio, as less material is wasted compared to conventional manufacturing methods.

For more information, please visit www.airbus.com and www.stratasys.com.

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