In January 2018, eleven companies started two seamlessly aligned Joint Innovation Projects (JIPs). The objective of the group, which has grown to 16 partners, is to collaborate in the development of a guideline and accompanying economic model for the additive manufacturing of qualified, functional metal (spare) parts for the Oil, Gas and Maritime industries.
The participating companies: Equinor, BP, Total, Kongsberg, OCAS, Ivaldi Group, TechnipFMC, Siemens, Voestalpine, Vallourec, Aidro, SLM Solutions, Additive Industries, Quintus, HIPtec and the Advanced Forming Research Centre of the University of Strathclyde are working on two coherent and seamlessly aligned programs:
- A guideline towards certified parts, managed by DNV-GL
- A toolbox for selection, supply chain set-up and economic viability, managed by Berenschot
The aligned set-up of the two programs secures maximum cross fertilization. SLM Solutions supports the projects by providing its technical expertise in additive manufacturing, specifically the successful implementation of Selective Laser Melting technology. Representing SLM Solutions in the JIP, Giulio Canegallo, Director of Business Development Energy, said “Our aim is to make the SLM® technology better known in the industry and to increase its application through uniform standards.”
The practical guideline is to be made available by June 2019. It will provide a framework to ensure that metal parts produced via Selective Laser Melting Technology and Wire Arc Additive Manufacturing are according to Oil, Gas and Maritime industry specifications. This means that parts meet stated quality and are manufactured in a safe and repeatable manner.
Up to five pilot parts will be produced for the project to ensure all necessary steps for repeatable, quality production. One example of these parts is a pump impeller that SLM Solutions manufactures for Equinor on the SLM®280 Selective Laser Melting Machine [Fig 1-2]. The partners will do a final test of the applicability of this guideline during the production of these pilot parts, focusing on the practical use of the guideline in production and quality of the parts achieved. The learnings from these case studies will be implemented in the final version of the guideline.
Also, to be released in June 2019, a comprehensive and fully functional business tool that will help determine the bottom-line impact of 3D printing spare parts compared to traditional manufacturing methods. This model will be tested during the Q2 part production process. In conjunction with this ROI-model a database of parts will be compiled to showcase the applicability of AM for spare parts in Oil, Gas and Maritime applications.
Additive manufacturing in the oil & gas industry is estimated by some reports to reach $1.5 billion by 2025. Experts believe that by using additive manufacturing in the oil & gas industry, the oil & gas extraction will be more efficient, quick & costs effective. This will naturally impact every aspect of the economy of any country.
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