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Ford takes 3D approach to sand printing

When it comes to making the cars we drive greener, there is much more to consider than simply exhaust emissions: including how the vehicles are manufactured. Near the top of the list is the use of 3D printing (pictured).Ford 3D Printing

Additive manufacturing is being embraced by Ford with many components of the Ford EcoBoost 3.5litre engine that is used in the Ford Transit Van developed with 3D rapid manufacturing. Among the parts developed using the technology included: brake rotors, oil pan, differential carrier, exhaust manifolds, cast aluminium oil filtration adaptors and more.

In addition Ford is said to be creating a new variation of the technology: known as 3D printing with sand. This creates cast patterns and cores with multiple printers.

With the technology, Ford allowed engineers to create a host of testable pieces featuring slight variations: this could boost efficiency and the time it takes to bring the vehicles to market.

Some of the features that have made use of 3D sand printing so far include: the Ford C-MAX and Ford Fusion Hybrid with rotor supports, damper housings and transmission cases; the Ford Escape with EcoBoost four-cylinder engines; the Ford Explorer with brake rotors for the 2011 Explorer; and the Ford F-150 with exhaust manifolds for the 3.5litre EcoBoost engine.

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Paul Lucas

Filed under: Latest News, Green cars, Ford

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