SLM Solutions Group SLM 500 3D metal printer
3d-printing, SLM Solutions

Rolls-Royce invests in two more SLM 3D metal printers

SLM Solutions Group has announced the sale of two more SLM 500s to Rolls-Royce in 2022. Rolls-Royce previously purchased SLM 500s as part of the journey to transfer their expertise and knowledge gained on single laser solutions to multi-laser platforms. These additional machines are part of the pre-production ramp up for the Pearl 10X engine.

Rolls-Royce will be using the systems for the manufacturing of aero engine components. These SLM 500 will be utilized to 3D print complex combustor tiles achieving valuable weight and emission reduction ultimately contributing to the world-class environmental performance of the Pearl 10X an overall 5% increase in efficiency for the Pearl 10X compared to its predecessor.

Rolls-Royce Pearl 10X

The Pearl 10X is the most powerful member of the market-leading Pearl engine family and has been designed specifically for the Dassault Falcon 10X, a highly advanced jet aircraft. With more than 3,600 business jets powered by Rolls-Royce engines in service, they remain the world’s leading engine supplier in the business jet market. Richard Mellor, Rolls-Royce Chief Manufacturing Engineer for Additive Layer Manufacturing, says ’Additive layer manufacturing enables the delivery of complex high-performing assemblies which cannot be manufactured using conventional techniques. For example, these combustor tiles include cooling holes which turn the air through 180 degrees maximising efficiency whilst reducing emissions. This repeat order reflects the close and successful relationship between the Rolls-Royce and SLM teams.”

Metalprinting will increase enormously

The industrialization of additive manufacturing within the broader civil aviation sector is expected to gather momentum in the coming periods with the AMPOWER Report 2022 forecasting system sales will triple to over EUR 250 million by 2026. “Having a high-profile company such as Rolls-Royce as a returning customer is really gratifying” comments SLM Solutions’ CEO, Sam O’Leary. “We are committed to forging relationships like these with our team of experts every step of the way, ensuring our customers’ success through close collaboration.”

Increase build rates by 90%

The SLM 500 can integrate lasers independently or in parallel to increase build rates by 90% compared to twin laser configurations. Machine operator and powder are separated through a closed-loop powder handling strategy with an automated powder sieve and supply. Designed for serial production, the exchangeable build cylinder enables the shortest possible fire to fire times, reducing downtimes of the machine to a minimum.