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Using total specific cost indices to compare the cost performance of additive manufacturing for the medical devices domain

Baumers, Martin; Wildman, Ricky; Wallace, Martin; Yoo, Jae; Blackwell, Brett; Farr, Phil; Roberts, Clive J

Authors

RICKY WILDMAN Ricky.Wildman@nottingham.ac.uk
Professor of Multiphase Flow and Mechanics

Martin Wallace

Jae Yoo

Brett Blackwell

Phil Farr



Abstract

The label additive manufacturing, also known as three-dimensional printing, serves as an umbrella term for a number of technologies designed to deposit product geometries directly from build materials and digital design information. However, as a relatively recent addition to the spectrum of manufacturing processes, the relationship between process type, system characteristics and cost performance is still broadly unclear for several technology types. To address this gap, the current research develops comprehensive and robust additive manufacturing cost models for two less-studied polymeric additive manufacturing technology variants, material jetting and mask projection stereolithography. Despite sharing the fundamental principle of photopolymerization, the operating processes of both systems are markedly different. This is reflected in the constructed cost models, which incorporate process maps to capture ancillary process elements, ensure efficient capacity utilisation through optimised build volume packing and approximate the expected cost impact of build failure. On this basis, this article estimates a set of specific cost indices reflecting the overall total cost performance of the investigated systems in an example application from the medical devices domain. Specific cost results range from £2.01 to £1.19/cm3 deposited on the Objet Connex 260 system and from £1.59 to £1.00/cm3 of material deposited on the Perfactory system. These results are discussed in the context of similar cost indices extracted from the empirical engineering literature. This article shows that next to increases in build speed, improvements in overall process automation and process stability are needed to enhance the commercial proposition of the investigated technology variants.

Citation

Baumers, M., Wildman, R., Wallace, M., Yoo, J., Blackwell, B., Farr, P., & Roberts, C. J. (2018). Using total specific cost indices to compare the cost performance of additive manufacturing for the medical devices domain. Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part B: Journal of Engineering Manufacture, 1-15. https://doi.org/10.1177/0954405418774591

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Apr 8, 2018
Online Publication Date Jun 13, 2018
Publication Date Jun 13, 2018
Deposit Date Dec 17, 2018
Journal Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part B: Journal of Engineering Manufacture
Print ISSN 0954-4054
Electronic ISSN 2041-2975
Publisher SAGE Publications
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Pages 1-15
DOI https://doi.org/10.1177/0954405418774591
Keywords Mechanical Engineering; Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
Public URL https://nottingham-repository.worktribe.com/output/1419501
Publisher URL https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/10.1177/0954405418774591