BUILD June 2017

14 BUILD / June 2017 , Making More with Less World-leadingmetal powder manufacturer, Höganäs, was named one of the Top 50 Architects worldwide by BUILD. We speak to Alexander Sakratidis about the firm, 3D Printing and its revolutionary products. As the world moves steadily towards more generative and flexible manufacturing methods, Höganäs is at the forefront of this development. Höganäs is the world’s leading manufacturer of iron and metal powders continuously pioneering into new developments. Digital Metal® is Höganäs revolutionary, proprietary precision ink- jet technology for additive manufacturing and 3D printing of metal components and systems. It offers a unique capacity to rapidly and cost-effectively produce highly complex and intricate designs and features for metallic parts. Höganäs also offers an extensive range of metal powders for additive manufacturing. Founded in 1797 as a coal mine by Count Eric Ruuth, the company also made refractory and salt glazed ceramics. Ruuth was a Swedish nobleman and the owner of Marsvinsholm Castle. He served as the Governor-General of Swedish Pomerania from 1792 to 1796. Alexander Sakratidis is Sales Manager at Höganäs Digital Metal®. “We always strive to improve and push the boundaries of what is possible,” he explains, regarding the firm’s aims and the strategies employed to achieve this. “Our development team is constantly investigating and developing new metal powders and alloys as well as refining the technology. ”By utilising the endless opportunities of our metal powders, we know that we can improve resource efficiency and lead a wave of change for the better. To achieve this, traditional ways of doing things must be challenged. We actively seek out needs not being met and then invent new solutions. Our search for how metal powder can make a real difference never ends. With people at every level of our organisation dedicated to redefining what is possible, we continue to amaze the world with new breakthroughs.” Alexander continues in further depth, speaking of the processes undertaken when new clients for 3D metal printing come on- board. All potential new clients and/or projects are subject to a thorough assessment and the firm actively engages in dialogue with potential customers to ensure the best possible outcome. “Many times the CAD files we receive are made for traditional manufacturing, and hence do not take into account the many benefits with 3D metal printing. “If the client is searching for 3D metal printed components with complex design, high resolution and fine surface quality, then Höganäs’ Digital Metal® technology is a good choice,” he elaborates, talking about what sets the firm aside from competitors in the market. “Our high resolution of 35 µ m and surface quality with an average surface roughness of Ra 6 µ m makes it ideal for internal channels where polishing is not possible or very hard to perform. Another unique feature is that we do not use any support structures when printing. This also means that multiple layers of components, different or the same, can be printed on top of each other. By doing so we can move from just prototyping into serial production with high productivity. “We have several projects where we in close cooperation with the client have moved from making prototypes into serial production of up to 25,000-30,000 pieces on a yearly basis. Lesson’s learned is to always be clear on expectations and possibilities. By applying this, the client will come up with ways of improving their own design. “At Höganäs we understand that cost efficiency is at the top of our customer’s priority list along with functionality. This is where Höganäs Digital Metal® printing comes into play. How? Our customers can optimize the components for functionality and not manufacturing methods.” Recently, Höganäs was selected to be one of our Top 50 Architects in the world, an accolade of which Alexander and the team feel honoured to receive. He embellishes on what else we can expect from the firm in the not-too-distant future. “We hope our presence will contribute to an even higher interest in the possibilities with 3D metal printing,” he explains. “There are figures indicating that the 3D metal printing industry is increasing with a pace of 30% per year. We also see a lot of joint ventures and larger companies such as General Electric buying 3D printing companies. “We welcome more serial production. One such interesting project we are engaged in is with Swiss watch maker Montfort. Our 3D-printing technique, Digital Metal®, allowed them the complete freedom of design they were looking for. The beautiful watches are inspired by the Swiss alpes, with dials produced by Höganäs.” 1703BU16 “We always strive to improve and push the boundaries of what is possible.”