AGC Inc. to provide Manufacturing-as-a-Service of 3D-Printed Composite Parts in Japan using Arevo’s technology

Japan-based industrial conglomerate AGC Inc., has become Arevo’s Strategic Manufacturing Partner and will provide Manufacturing-as-a-Service (MaaS) for the on-demand production of ultra-strong, lightweight 3D-printed composite parts.

The new service is based on AREVO’s “Aqua” platform, that AGC Inc. recently installed in its facility. The “Aqua” platform is an industrial-grade continuous fiber 3D printing system that can print parts of up to one-meter cubic volume.

The Aqua Printer uses a patented laser-based DED (“direct energy deposition”) in-situ consolidation process. This closed loop process with machine learning algorithms is the world’s most advanced thermoplastic composite deposition technology. This process has been validated with the highest mechanical properties and lowest voids, or “gaps,” within the finished product (as measured by the total volume) as compared to any other 3D printing technology.

Composite parts are printed using high performance composite material with a PEEK (polyetheretherketone) thermoplastic polymer matrix and aerospace grade carbon fiber. This material meets stringent FST (Fire, Smoke, Toxicity) requirements for aerospace and defense applications. Further, PEEK offers outstanding resistance to harsh chemicals, excellent mechanical strength and dimensional stability.

A critical advantage for AREVO and the company’s customers lies in the industry’s first, fully integrated composite tool chain to accelerate the process from concept to production of the composite parts. This software features composite generative design with optimum fiber orientation, mechanical performance prediction and optimization, virtual 3D printer visualization of the print process as well as monitoring process data during the print process for automated quality control.

The technology meets the most rigorous manufacturing specifications of the aerospace industry — for primary structures such as wing and fuselage components, engine components such as cascade and interior parts such as cabin seat frames and partitions. AREVO also provides a cost-effective solution for consumer products such as sporting goods and in other areas of transportation.

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