The Sauber F1 Team, in conjunction with Netherlands-based specialist industrial metal additive manufacturers Additive Industries, are hoping to increase their 2018 title hopes by launching the MetalFAB1 3-D metal printer – with a second 3-D printing system to follow later in the year.
The move marks the first step in the two companies’ plans to transform the 3-D printing industry from Sauber’s Hinwil headquarters, creating new processes and exchanging knowledge to benefit third-party companies.
The MetalFAB1 machine will allow substantially improved reproducibility and productivity compared to other production processes, whilst the second machine will allow the team to 3-D print plastics – giving Sauber much more flexibility in their preparations, and potentially giving the team more resources and the ability to test more often in the coming season.
Axel Kruse, Operations Director of Sauber Motorsport AG, said that there has never been a better time to make the partnership. “In manufacturing industry technology there is a sense of revolution – not only because of the progress in digitalisation. Together with Additive Industries, the Sauber F1 Team will develop the necessary know-how in additive manufacturing, for Formula 1, as well as for third-party business. It is the perfect time for us to take on this challenge with Additive Industries to tackle the steep learning curve to 3D print parts for the Sauber F1 Team race cars as well as for third party applications.”
For Daan Kersten, CEO of Additive Industries, the opportunity to work with Sauber – a team who themselves have over ten years of experience in additive manufacturing using plastics – was too good to miss.
“In this partnership we will enable the Sauber F1 Team professionals to accelerate in the metal additive manufacturing domain. We are grateful that in return, we can use Sauber’s brand new state-of-the-art production facility in Hinwil as a training facility for our European customer base.”