In our article World’s biggest and fastest 3D printer in the making you can read about Airbus taking a lot of interest in the 3D printing technology. But they are not the only aviation giant looking at the possibilities of 3D printing. Teams across the Boeing enterprise are using 3D printing in a plethora of ways, including fit check models, shop aids, tool mock-ups and visualization models.
“3D printing allows us to model data analysis in an innovative way. Being able to see different levels of stress on a part can be very helpfully for our employees and customers,” said Dan Seal, Immersive Development program manager.
In May this year Boeing already showed their interest in 3D technology by announcing their experiment of applying 3D scanning technology on the 747 line in its Everett plant. This scanning technology can gather information and make thousands of measurements. With a high degree of accuracy 3D images are created of the measured objects.
While many uses for the 3D printing technology have already been identified, the ImDev team continues to seek additional ideas from across the enterprise.
“We’ve already seen 3D printing be used in a multitude of innovative ways all across Boeing,” noted Seal. “We want everyone to be aware of the technology approach us if there is another application we haven’t thought of yet. We want to leverage this technology to help teams across Boeing.”
Now that both Airbus and Boeing are showing high interest in this technology, 3D printing is well on its way to becoming THE manufacturing technology for aviation.