AWI targets 3D printing with exotic nickel alloy wire

Alloy Wire International (AWI), a manufacturer of wire materials, says it’s targeting the 3D printing industry with an exotic nickel alloy which can be used in Wire Arc Additive Manufacturing (WAAM).

The UK-based company, which specialises in round, flat and profile wire, made the announcement ahead of Farnborough International Airshow next week, where it will showcase what it believes to be ‘an exciting new offer’ for part manufacturers, particularly in aerospace where AWI’s materials are already used in the construction of aircraft instrumentation and high-performance engines.

Angus Hogarth, R&D Director at AWI, commented: “It’s all about finding that manufacturing difference and additive manufacturing is a discipline the aerospace manufacturers are increasingly investing in.

“We were confident we could play a role in 3D printing and, after months of R&D and technical reviews, we see our business as being a strong supplier of Exotic nickel alloy wire to the growing additive manufacturing sector. This is something we will definitely be promoting at Farnborough with new and existing customers.”

The company is specifically targeting the WAAM process, which uses wire feedstock to produce near net shape parts, resulting in reduced lead times, waste and post-machining compared to conventional methods. The technology has been deployed for the production of large-scale parts in industries such as aerospace, architecture, and maritime.

AWI’s wire and straight bars are produced in the West Midlands and made into springs, fire detection wire, fasteners and electrical instruments which can work at high temperatures and/or in corrosive gases or liquids. The company has been AS9100-accredited for the aerospace industry since 2013 and says it will also be showcasing commonly used alloys for the sector next week including Inconel, Nimonic, Monel, Nitronic, Phynox, Waspaloy, and the recently launched INCONEL: 617, a Nickel-Chromium-Cobalt-Molybdenum alloy with an addition of aluminium.

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