While use of additive manufacturing (AM) as a prototyping technology has been around for many decades, the technology advancements in materials, software and processes have enabled production applications in the automotive industry. The key challenge for the industry is how to choose the right applications that are not only technically feasible, but also make economic sense. General Motors has developed a method that establishes why, and how, to use AM across a wide variety of application types from manufacturing aids and development prototypes to fully viable production applications. This method creates a flexible infrastructure of solutions that enhances all parts of the business and has helped usher in a new paradigm of manufacturing and business model efficiencies. Moreover, the method continues to open previously unviable solutions. This presentation will identify the general application evaluation methods, tools required to facilitate the methods, and provide examples of success through case studies.
- List the triage steps required to properly filter applications into actionable categories.
- Define the tools required to execute additive manufacturing application evaluations
- Review case studies that help illustrate good uses of AM.