Cummins First Metal AM Lance Tip in PPAP
The Binder Jet Metal AM process at Cummins. Photo via Cummins Inc.
Founded in 1919, Cummins Inc., Columbus, IN, has designed, manufactured, and distributed a broad portfolio of diesel, natural gas, electric, and hybrid powertrains. They also produce related components for filtration, fuel systems, turbochargers, automated transmissions, batteries, and fuel cells. Now they can add metal additive manufacturing (AM) to their portfolio as they are in the process of final approval for its first metal AM production part.
The part is a Cummins Emission Solutions (CES) lance tip adapter, a critical part that atomizes and injects diesel exhaust fluid into a high-horsepower engine, reducing nitrogen oxides emissions. Production is slated for later this year. Producing the lance tip adaptor through binder jet AM provided several benefits over traditional manufacturing techniques, such as a lighter-weight design, improved geometry for fluid and air flow, and removed the added complexity of cross-drillings.
According to Cummins, the binder jet technology is capable of printing between 60 and 100 times faster than other laser-based printing processes, therefore facilitating high-volume production. Binder jetting also offers environmental gains, as the printer can take nearly all of the leftover powder from the printing process and recirculate it through the system for reuse in the production of other parts.
The AM lance tip adaptor is currently passing through Cummins’ production part approval process. The firm’s engineering teams are working on designing and printing several other concept parts with the goal of finalizing more parts by the end of the year.