Al Seer Marine, a prominent company that has adapted additive manufacturing to solve various engineering challenges and create new market opportunities. This article explores how Al Seer Marine is harnessing additive manufacturing to enhance efficiency, cost-effectiveness, and innovation to fulfill technical requirements in industry.
Large Scale Additive Manufacturing
Large-scale 3D printing is a revolutionary technology that has the potential to transform multiple industries, from manufacturing and construction to aerospace and healthcare. With the ability to create objects of significant dimensions, large-scale 3D printing opens up new possibilities for innovation, customization, and cost-effective production.
One of the key advantages of large-scale 3D printing is the ability to create complex and intricate designs that were previously difficult or impossible to manufacture using traditional methods. The layer-by-layer additive manufacturing process allows for the fabrication of intricate geometries, internal cavities, and lightweight structures with optimal strength-to-weight ratios. This is particularly valuable in industries like aerospace and marine where lightweight and high-performance components are critical.
Additionally, large-scale 3D printing promotes sustainability by minimizing material waste. Traditional manufacturing processes often generate significant waste due to subtractive methods, whereas 3D printing adds material only where it is needed.
One of the primary applications of large-scale 3D printing in Al Seer Marine is the production of molds and complete vessels, ship components and spare parts. Ships require a wide range of specialized parts, and traditional manufacturing methods often involve long lead times and high costs. With large-scale 3D printing, these parts can be produced on-demand, reducing inventory requirements and enabling more efficient maintenance and repair operations.
Large Scale Additive Manufacturing Process
Large-scale additive manufacturing involves a series of steps to transform a digital design into a physical object. The first step in additive manufacturing is DFAM, DFAM focuses on optimizing the design to take advantage of the capabilities and constraints of the 3D printing process. Designers consider factors such as support structures, material usage, and part orientation to maximize the efficiency and functionality of the final printed object.
After the design is finalized, computer-aided manufacturing (CAM) software is used to prepare the design for printing. This includes slicing the 3D model into a series of horizontal layers, determining the toolpath for each layer, and generating the instructions for the 3D printer.
The sliced design is converted into machine-readable instructions, often in the form of G-code, which is a language understood by 3D printers. G-code instructions specify the movement, speed, and temperature settings for the printer. Prior to printing, virtual simulations may be performed to validate the design, identify potential issues, and optimize printing parameters.
Further, the process parameters are defined based on the specific 3D printer and material being used. These parameters include nozzle type, print speed, layer height, infill density, and cooling settings. With the design prepared and process parameters set, the large-scale 3D printing process begins. The 3D printer follows the instructions from the G-code, depositing or curing the material layer by layer to build the object.
Once the object is printed, post-processing steps may be necessary. This can include removing support structures, sanding or smoothing the surface, applying coatings or finishes, and performing any required secondary operations, such as drilling or threading. Quality assurance is an essential step in large-scale additive manufacturing for Al Seer Marine. It involves inspecting the printed object to verify dimensional accuracy, structural integrity, and surface finish.
How Al Seer Marine adopts Large Scale Additive Manufacturing for In-house requirements
Industries often faces challenges in maintaining a vast inventory of spare parts due to cost, storage limitations, and obsolescence risks. Additive manufacturing provides the ability to produce spare parts on-demand, eliminating the need for extensive storage and reducing downtime. With 3D printing, Al Seer Marine can manufacture spare parts as needed, ensuring availability and reducing lead times, ultimately improving maintenance efficiency and vessel uptime.
Additive manufacturing enables rapid prototyping, allowing marine industry professionals to quickly create physical prototypes of molds, structural parts, and components. This capability facilitates Al Seer Marine’s design verification, functionality testing, and iterations. Rapid prototyping accelerates the development process, reduces time-to-market, and enables quicker design iterations for optimal performance and fit.
Additive manufacturing at Al Seer Marine is also used to create molds for composites. This can help to reduce the cost and lead time for producing these parts. In addition to this, changes in mould making is also easy. Additionally, AM is also used to produce complex structure parts for marine vessels. This helps to improve the strength, stiffness, and weight of these parts.
Out-house Markets for Large Scale Additive Manufacturing
The MRO (Maintenance, Repair, and Overhaul sector can benefit greatly from large-scale additive manufacturing. Rapid production of critical components reduces downtime and eliminates the need for maintaining large inventories. With the ability to 3D print intricate parts with high accuracy, Al Seer Marine can offer efficient and cost-effective MRO services to their clients.
The space industry demands lightweight, high-performance components that can withstand extreme conditions. Large-scale additive manufacturing enables the production of intricate and lightweight structures, making it an ideal fit for space agencies.
The railway sector in the UAE and GCC regions is experiencing significant growth. Large-scale additive manufacturing can support the production of customized railway components, such as lightweight interior parts, brackets, and connectors. By employing this technology, Al Seer Marine can offer rapid prototyping, reduced lead times, and cost-effective manufacturing solutions to railway operators.
The automotive sector constantly seeks new ways to improve vehicle performance and efficiency. Large-scale additive manufacturing can contribute to this goal by producing lightweight yet robust components, such as engine parts, chassis components, and customized interiors.
The security and defense industry requires advanced and highly specialized equipment. Large-scale additive manufacturing can address the demand for customized, complex components used in defense applications, including drones, military vehicles, and surveillance systems.
Large-scale additive manufacturing offers creative possibilities for art and culture projects. From large-scale sculptures to intricate installations. Al Seer Marine can contribute to the fusion of technology and creativity, pushing the boundaries of artistic expression.
Robotic Additive Manufacturing System at Al Seer Marine
The additive manufacturing facility at Al Seer Marine has a 36-meter-long robotic 3D printer, developed by CEAD. The printer is called the Mega II and uses a pellet extrusion process to create composite parts. It is capable of printing parts up to 36 meters long, 4 meters wide, and up to 3 meters high. The printer is currently being used to print boat hulls, and molds. Al Seer Marine uses the printer to produce a variety of other marine and industrial components in the future. The Mega II is the largest 3D printer in the world and is a significant development in the field of additive manufacturing.
Subscribe to AM Chronicle Newsletter to stay connected: https://bit.ly/3fBZ1mP
Follow us on LinkedIn: https://bit.ly/3IjhrFq
Visit for more interesting content on additive manufacturing: https://amchronicle.com