10/20/2016 | 1 MINUTE READ

Ingersoll Introduces Wide and High Additive Manufacturing (WHAM) Machines

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The large-format 3D printers are being developed in partnership with ORNL.

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Ingersoll Machine Tools is partnering with Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) to develop 3D printers leveraging the Department of Energy's Manufacturing Demonstration Facility at ORNL in Tennessee. Ingersoll, a supplier of large machine tools and processes, is entering the 3D printing world through a cooperative research and development agreement to aid in developing of Wide and High Additive Manufacturing (WHAM) machines.

The large-format machines are capable of printing a range of composite plastics while offering speed and precision, and include automatic exchange of the printing extruder with a high-speed five-axis milling attachment for conventional subtractive finishing operations. With a standard work envelope of 46 × 23 × 10 ft. and target material deposition of 1,000 lbs/hr., developers say that the WHAM machines will perform at larger scale and faster speeds. They are built on a platform of existing modular components and the size can be customized to various specifications.

While new to 3D printing, Ingersoll’s development of WHAM draws on the company’s existing proficiencies in metalcutting and automated fiber placement (AFP) machines.

Tino Oldani, Ingersoll president and CEO, stated “Our machine design expertise combined with the ability to develop a complete process for our customers makes WHAM a logical step forward. Our partnership with Oak Ridge National Laboratory gives us a huge advantage.”

Ingersoll’s Mike Reese, director of sales, explained, “Working with Oak Ridge National Laboratory provides a fast track to match the current state of the art and take it to the next level as quickly as possible.”

“Our collaboration with Ingersoll on the development of a 3D printer that provides a volume not possible with current printers could open up new markets and applications in defense, energy and other areas of manufacturing. Ingersoll brings years of experience engineering massive equipment in the composites area, and we look forward to a successful partnership,” said Bill Peter, acting director of the Manufacturing Demonstration Facility at ORNL.

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