BMT Aerospace invests in additive manufacturing

BMT Aerospace and AET have set up a new joint venture called AMT Titastar for selling new products and services to the aerospace industry. AMT Titastar uses the BMT Group's know-how in the manufacturing of high quality hard metal components and combines this with the latest products from AET in which the advantages of titanium 3D printing are used. 

The combination of BMT Aerospace who manufacture precision gearwheels, transmissions and actuators for the aerospace industry in Oostkamp, and AET, means that innovative products - i.e. a series of advanced, smart drilling equipment - and a highly promising technology - 3D printing of titanium using electron beam melting (EBM) made by ARCAM, can be marketed to the aerospace industry.

Smart drilling units

The series of drilling units was designed and perfected for drilling through complex layers of materials in the aerospace industry. Thanks to titanium 3D printing, the Smart Drilling Units (patented) have the best strength to weight ratio. Moreover, the low power and the special NC operating controls makes them strong, compact and safe. Traceability and process quality is guaranteed thanks to real-time monitoring. Smart Drilling Units can adjust the speed and be adapted to suit every individual type of material forming part of any sort of combination. 

The new drilling units have various advantages including: production cycles can be reduced by up to 70% with respect to current drilling equipment, maintenance costs are up to 80% lower, up to 20% less material is used, and the working conditions are better. 

Additive manufacturing with titanium

Most of the Smart Drilling Unit assembly is manufactured using titanium 3D printing. The new AMT Titastar specialises specifically in printing metal using EBM technology and is currently the most productive. The company has invested in its first EBM machine that will probably be followed by more printers as production increases. By acquiring skills for 3D printing, design, production, finishing and coating (thanks to BMT Aerospace), AMT Titastar can become an expert at the production of high quality titanium components for the aerospace industry for either individual items, or for parts of larger sub-assemblies in cooperation with BMT Aerospace. This unique situation will allow the new company to put highly efficient drilling equipment and high quality titanium components for the aerospace industry onto the market at competitive prices. 

AET could rely on Sirris, from the development of the drilling equipment components using 3D printing up to looking for the right (investment) partner. Sirris introduced AET to BMT Aerospace and very recently, AMT Titastar was launched.