Siemens AG and Strata Manufacturing PJSC have signed an agreement to work together to 3-D print parts for aircraft interiors for Etihad Airways, one of the largest airlines serving the Middle East.
Under the deal, Siemens and Strata will work to make complex parts for aircraft cabin interior products on demand, and to manufacture discontinued parts. The companies claim this will be the first time 3-D printed aviation parts will be used and manufactured in the United Arab Emirates, Middle East and the entire Asian region.
The agreement will include the training and development of UAE citizens with the skills needed to further deploy 3-D printing technology. Etihad believes using 3-D printing, over conventional manufacturing, will enable faster on-demand production of complex parts, as well as discontinued parts that will make design improvements by airlines more feasible.
Strata will explore using 3-D printing technology in areostructures, such as tooling, fixtures and consumables, using metallic and non-metallic materials. Siemens’ 3-D printing portfolio includes computer-aided design (CAD) software, in addition to control, automation and drive systems. 3-D printing has already been used to manufacture parts for industrial gas turbines and rail vehicles, in order to make design, production and delivery of parts faster, enabling rapid prototyping, manufacturing and repair.
“We see great opportunities for 3D printing as a disruptive force in manufacturing, and expect it to play a key role in a globally competitive, increasingly digitalized industrial landscape in the Middle East,” says Assem Khalaili, executive VP of Industry Customer Services at Siemens Middle East. “This is highly relevant technology for the region’s development of an increasingly digitalized and diversified economic landscape, across a wide range of sectors.”