KW Special Projects - Digital Manufacturing Centre
12 December 2019
Additive Manufacturing capability and capacity increased in preparation for Silverstone based Digital Manufacturing Centre
• Significant Step achieved to increase AM capability in region
• Funding provided by South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership (SEMLEP), through Local Growth Fund
• KW Special Projects secured the funding for 1,657 sqm facility and equipment at Silverstone Park
• New facility is expected to add £9m to economy
High performance engineering and additive manufacturing specialists K W Special Projects (KWSP) has completed a significant step towards the development of the new Digital Manufacturing Centre (DMC) opening at Silverstone Park in autumn 2020 through the acquisition of a range of additive manufacturing machines.
The DMC is forecast to generate £9 million additional economic value for the area. The project is led by KWSP who secured funding from the South East Midlands Local Enterprise Partnership (SEMLEP) for the 1,657 sqm facility.
The new machines which include an RPS NEO800 and a Stratasys F900 Pro will be operational at KWSP’s HQ from mid-December before their relocation to the DMC once opened.
The NEO800 System, with a build window of 800mm X 800mm X 600mm, will provide Stereolithography (SLA) capability using the resins SOMOS DSM PerFORM Reflect and SOMOS DSM DMX-SL 100. Perform Reflect has ideal properties for Wind Tunnel model manufacturing, PIV (Particle Image Velocimetry) and body work. It is also particularly suited to high temperature resistant composites, rapid production of complex shapes including composite tooling such as loose tools and mould tools. DMX-SL 100 is has application for the manufacture of mandrels.
The high scanning resolution on the NEO800 allows for the reduction in finishing time so reducing cost and time to manufacture.
The Stratasys F900 Pro with one of the largest build platforms in the AM market being 914mm X 609mm X 914mm can print in a wide range of engineering thermoplastics to suit all needs, including ABS-M30, ABS-M30i, Ultem 9085, Ultem 1010, Carbon filled nylon, PC and PC-ABS as well as soluble SR30.
KWSP continues to offer a variety of post processing options and in house developed solutions as well as a full design for manufacture service together with its existing FDM capacity.
The recent acquisitions are a significant step towards the opening of the DMC which will also include the selection of a range of metallic additive machines.
Stuart Banyard, head of advanced manufacturing at KWSP, said: “The opportunities and benefits this increase in capability will offer our current customers and future customers and partners of the DMC are substantial. With a background in motorsport and high-performance engineering, we have extensive relevant experience in the applications of AM which will enable our clients to gain the optimum benefits of all aspects of the processes on offer at the DMC.
“We’re looking forward to putting our increased capabilities and capacity to good use in the very near future, building up a quicker response time and rapid results for clients across a wide range of industry sectors.”
The centre will act as a technology innovation hub, providing access to digital manufacturing capability including a range of additive manufacturing technologies while also allowing SMEs to access knowledge and advice by encouraging an eco-system in digital manufacturing. High-quality incubation space suitable for high-performance technology start-ups in additive are also benefits of the new facility.
The KWSP Digital Manufacturing Centre is an example of the recent priorities announced by SEMLEP through its Local Industrial Strategy. The facility will enhance the knowledge sharing capabilities of the Silverstone Technology area – encouraging the growth and commercialisation of innovation.
For more information on the full range of services offered by KWSP, please visit www.kwspecialprojects.com