German automaker Audi has unveiled their new in-house upcycling program that can take their own product packaging materials and 3D prints them into assemblage aids for use on the development line.
No vehicle supplier on earth builds every element on site. Most companies use components built by other OEMs which are then helped bring into the vehicle manufacturer for assembly. Many of these components are delicate and expensive, and require security from shocks and whatnot during carry to the stock.
Audi has reviewed how a lot of this clear plastic packaging they had recently been tossing out, and made a decision to take action useful with it. You can see a good example of the packaging holder and the recently developed assembly-widget in the picture below.
As part of its cross-site “Quest:No” environmental program, Audi is attempting to achieve net-zero carbon emissions at most of its sites by 2025, which effort of turning trash into 3D printed treasure is one way that they are heading about it.
With the Audi site in Neckarsulm, they have been taking the presentation waste material, shredding it into granulate, and drying it out. The dried out granulate is then fed into the filament maker, which has been provided by Dutch start-up 3devo.
The filament has been used to printing a number of tools and assemblage products such as pushers (to aid with clip unit installation), or jigs for aligning the Audi custom logo to the vehicles on the development line.
“Our goal was to create a material cycle that would allow us to recycle a few of the combined plastics that accumulate through the development of, say, an Audi A7,” talks about project supervisor Volker Eitrich.
“With this pilot task, we’re not only concentrating on swiftness, ergonomics, and basic safety, but also solidly on sustainability. The first major milestone was technological proof that the process is viable in an over-all sense – quite simply, that people can produce printable filament from existing plastics.”
The German automaker in addition has implemented a turn to 100% inexperienced energy as well as by using a shut water routine in their Neckarsulm factory, which will without doubt help the business strike their goal of net-zero emissions. Other in-house recycling efforts include the change of plastic into garbage luggage (made on site) and also a closed-loop aluminium stamping process.
“The 3D filament stamping pilot job is another example of how exactly we are always growing new answers to move deeper, one step at the same time, to your ultimate goal of obtaining a completely lasting automotive production process,” said Achim Diehlmann of the Objective:No program and Brain of Commercial Environmental Coverage at the Neckarsulm site.
Audi are using over 160 different 3D published tools and assembly aids at the website, and many have been found in the production of their Audi e-tron GT electric car already.