Chepetsk Mechanical Plant to become a ground for production of materials for 3D printers

Chepetsk Mechanical Plant (ChMZ JSC, a member of the Fuel Company TVEL of Rosatom) has been assigned to be an industrial site for the production of titanium alloy powders for 3D-printers. This decision was made at the “Rosatom – Additive Technologies Today” conference – first of its kind in the Russian nuclear industry. The decisive factors in this decision – are the undoubted advantages of the enterprise, which operates with the full production cycle of titanium and includes Central Plant Laboratory, equipped with modern equipment and experience, necessary for the certification of metal powders.

The scope of titanium powders in additive manufacturing is very wide: from “growing” the components of aircraft engines to the manufacturing of medical implants. The industry integrator, Rusatom – Additive Technologies, in collaboration with research institutes and using materials from ChMZ plans, to begin pilot production of titanium medical prostheses in 2020. 3D-printed samples have already passed pre-clinical trials. Thanks to the project, medical professionals will be able to get an individual and perfectly suitable implant for the patients, created on the basis of his tomogram in the shortest possible time.

Another project of ChMZ with AM is the study of features of 3D-printing with metal wire. The plant executes R&D works together with the Perm National Research Polytechnic University.

“Today, additive manufacturing needs suppliers who are able to quickly and efficiently produce unique materials for certain 3D-printing technologies. The competencies of the Chepetsk Mechanical Plant allow us to promptly adjust the chemical composition of alloys, which is especially important for our partners. The entry of ChMZ into the cluster of additive manufacturing combined with leading research and production companies of the country is a powerful reserve for the future enterprise,”– said Konstantin Shashkeev, project manager for new products of ChMZ.

3D-printing technologies are actively used in power engineering, instrumentation, aviation, space industry, where there is a high demand for products of complex geometry. According to experts, by 2025 the global additive manufacturing market will reach $45 billion. Today, there are about 100,000 3D-printers in the world, more than 5,000 of them are for metal printing. The annual growth in the production of industrial printers entails the need for printing materials, the manufacture of which is one of the strategic directions of the state program for the development of new production technologies in Russia.