"We are especially proud to be honored by such a recognized organization as ASME," says Jenny Nilsson, who led the team that realized the blade project. "The project objective was to try out and map this radical new way of working. The outcome is another confirmation that we are on the right path toward further improvements of our gas turbine technology," Jenny continues.
The project team worked with blades manufactured at the Siemens 3D printing facility in Finspong, Sweden and at Materials Solutions, the recently acquired company in Worcester, UK. Materials Solutions has more than 10 years' experience in additively manufacturing high performance parts for turbomachinery.
Materials Solutions is AS 9100 certified and an approved vendor for Additive Manufacturing for leading customers in the aerospace industry. Applying its aerospace experience, Materials Solutions also supplies tooling to leading automotive companies and high performance parts in titanium and nickel super alloys for auto sports.
Additive Manufacturing has the potential to become a key technology in the production of gas turbine components. Siemens has been investing in this innovative technology right from its inception, and is now driving the industrialization and commercialization of these processes. Besides the awarded turbine blades, Siemens is using the innovative technology to produce burner tips, burner nozzles and to repair burner heads.
"Additive Manufacturing is one of our main pillars in our digitalization strategy. With our combined know-how in 3D printing, we will continue to drive the technological development and application in this field," says Christoph Haberland, Advisory Key Expert Additive Manufacturing, and member of the blade team.
The ASME distinction is the third award for this project, following the International 3D Printing Industry Award and the companywide Werner von Siemens Award. In addition to a 16-page special section of the December 2017 issue of Mechanical Engineering magazine, ASME has also produced a five-video series celebrating the technologies. Some of these videos were debuted at ASME's largest annual event, the International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition, held in Tampa in November.