Value chain and production cost optimization by integrating additive manufacturing in injection molding process chain
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Additive manufacturing (AM) can create considerable value when integrated into conventional manufacturing process chains. Tooling for new molded product development as pilot case of integration of AM in the injection molding process chain is investigated. The study shows that injection molding based on AM for fabrication of polymer tool inserts is economically advantageous allowing 80–90% production costs reduction as compared with a conventional tooling process chain based on machining. Fabrication of soft tools with AM results in a production lead time reduction in the range of 60–70% compared to the time required to machine mold inserts in brass or aluminum.
KeywordsAdditive manufacturing Injection molding Tooling Production cost
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The Manufacturing Academy of Denmark (MADE) project (http://en.made.dk/), WorkPackage 3 “Additive Manufacturing and Advanced Manufacturing Technologies,” funded by Innovation Fund Denmark (https://innovationsfonden.dk/en), and the Marie og M. B. Richter’s Fond (Denmark) are acknowledged for supporting the present research. The authors thank the HEC Paris Business School (France) for the partial financial support to conduct this research.
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