Aviation and 3D printing: a faster and economic way to produce drones

30 January 2020by Fabio Gualdo0
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Companies producing drones can benefit from knowledge and use of innovative 3D printing technologies, as for example FDM technology. This technology allows to optimize the end-use parts design and the related production process. Leptron, leader in drones production, has increased its competitive advantage thanks to FDM technology.

In this case study, the company analyses the most proper production approach to make different versions of complex components. These plastic parts, that will be used in the drone fuselage, need to pass functional tests. Leptron therefore needs a fast production process, capable to reduce the time-to market in order to beat the competition.

The traditional approach would have used the injection moulding. Through this method the company would have delayed the production of the tooling and the components by 14 months. Components design changes would have forced the staff to build new tooling, with further delay and increasing costs.

In order to cut on time and costs the company has opted for 3D printing, with FDM technology. Such technology brings huge advantages to the production of plastic parts with complex geometries. This new approach has allowed to meet the mechanical requirements for each part utilized  in the drone fuselage.

Thanks to expertise in Additive Manufacturing, use of professional 3D printing systems and to the high performance materials, the produced parts are capable of passing the needed tests, making the project a success.

The total parts production time is reduced from 14 months, with the traditional approach, down to 8 months, through 3D printing. Moreover, this innovative technology allows for cost savings of around 59%.

Leptron, choosing FDM technology, has performed many design changes without delaying the development time and without increasing costs.

The picture shows the RDASS 4 drone produced with FDM technology for Leptron.

Spring srl: the best 3D printing service bureau for aerospace companies

Spring srl is specialized on FDM technology. For over 20 years, Spring srl has worked with highly innovative companies. The technical staff is capable of supporting customers in co-design, to provide the best technical solutions. In order to meet the tough aerospace industry requirements, Spring srl has obtained the AS 9100. This certification is designed to meet the aerospace and defence industry on production of end-use parts. As of today, Spring works with the major players in the defence and aerospace field.

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Images: https://www.stratasys.com/it/resources/search/case-studies/leptron

Fabio Gualdo

Fabio Gualdo


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