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Russian Helicopters looks to 3D printing

16th July 2019 - 14:30 GMT | by The Shephard News Team

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Russian Helicopters is re-engineering parts for its helicopters as it prepares to introduce additive manufacturing in 2020.

Up to 80 different helicopter parts are set to be manufactured using 3D printing technology for serial production, with each to undergo construction re-design, strength testing and testing prior to entering serial production.

The use of additive manufacturing can significantly reduce the mass of aircraft such as the VRT500 and Ansat helicopter, and costs.

Andrey Shibitov, director for innovations, Russian Helicopters, said: ‘This year we are finishing the re-engineering of around 30 different parts and details that will be manufactured using additive technologies. These parts are currently manufactured with various methods, like casting, punching or machining and we need to integrate their production to 3D printing.

‘According to our plans, this will process will start in 2020. We are talking about serious, power elements of the structures, units and systems of our helicopters. By the end of the year, we will decide whether we are ready to put these parts on serial production.’

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