DB enters the third dimension

Deutsche Bahn is leading the way with changing supply chain models using 3D printing.  Using the technology to provide spare parts, it is aiming to improve service levels of trains by cutting the overall time to deliver obsolete parts.


3DGerman Rail (DB) is actively engaged in a project to use 3D printing to produce components for both infrastructure and rolling stock. Kevin Smith spoke with Stefanie Brickwede, who is leading the effort at DB, about progress so far.

PIONEERED in the aviation industry as a means of reducing the weight of components, additive manufacturing, or 3D printing, is now a growing area of interest and development for rail.German Rail (DB) is the latest company to explore opportunities to use 3D printing. However, it is not weight loss which the railway is looking to alleviate, but replacement of obsolescent components used in rolling stock and rail infrastructure.

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