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28th July 2017, Stuttgart

Best of both worlds with AdditiveCARBON

Cikoni is launching cost-efficient lightweight technology for combining the design freedom of 3D printing with the performance of carbon composites.

Additive manufacturing provides almost unlimited freedom in design but to date, material properties have not been comparable to the high load-bearing capacities of carbon fibre composites, which play to their strengths when the load acts preferentially along the fibre direction.

The approach is particularly interesting where lightweight design requirements are combined with distinct component variability. © Cikoni

Cikoni’s AdditiveCARBON technology allows the realisation of hybrid structures in a combined and fully automated manufacturing approach in which the carbon fibre reinforcement directly follows the load paths and the additive base structure serves as support for compressive loading.

So far, in additive manufacturing a larger building volume leads to higher production costs and longer production times. In typical composites production by turn, tooling costs, inefficient material utilisation and waste also lead to high overall costs.

AdditiveCARBON seeks to eliminate the limitations of both technologies by means of a targeted hybridization – the carbon fibre reinforcement reduces the necessary building volume of the 3D printing part and the additively manufactured base structure makes a separate tool unnecessary for the robot-supported 3D winding process, with a positive impact, not least on the cost side.

Cikoni’s AdditiveCARBON technology allows the realisation of hybrid structures in a combined and fully automated manufacturing approach. © Cikoni

The approach is particularly interesting where lightweight design requirements are combined with distinct component variability. AddtiveCARBON enables higher productivity, individual prostheses and ultralight aircraft structures. To ensure that the process can also be applied in cost-sensitive areas, Cikoni engineers have also developed a modular system with hybridized injection-moUlded and metal components, from which larger structures can be quickly configured from modules. The approach has already convinced numerous customers to rethink their view on lightweight design.

Cikoni, based in Stuttgart, Germany, was founded in 2015 by former employees of Mercedes-Benz, Audi and the German Aerospace Centre, bringing together sector-specific development expertise from conceptual design to manufacturing.

www.cikoni.com

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