Additive Manufacturing – efficiency: designed, engineered and industrialised
HiETA Technologies Ltd is a product design, development and production company exploiting the new technology of Additive Manufacturing (AM) using Selective Laser Melting (SLM). Through this process components are “grown” layer-by-layer from very fine metal powders, which provides additional 3D design freedoms allowing HiETA to create more compact and efficient products than otherwise possible through conventional manufacturing techniques.
The SLM process deployed at HiETA allows the time and cost of early concept development and prototyping of designs to be dramatically reduced, whilst creating functional components that can follow straight into production. These components often include complex, optimised geometries using lattices, making them lighter and more efficient than conventional manufacturing techniques allow. Component performance can be analysed and verified using HiETA’s in-house 1D modelling, CFD, FEA and practical testing capabilities and expertise.
To ensure component quality and process reliability, in-process monitoring was being developed for HiETA’s AM machines, for which bespoke PCBs were required. It was for Cubik Innovation’s expertise in PCB design and manufacture that they were approached for the development of 3 sets of PCBs for HiETA’s re-coating photography project.
The aim of this project is to capture an image of the build chamber before and after each layer is processed during a complete build, enabling post-analysis and process quality verification.
Cubik took the design concept produced by HiETA and developed it to allow fast, simple prototype of the system. Using Altium Designer Cubik developed the schematics and produced the PCB design, ready for manufacture. The in-house production department at Cubik assembled a batch of 3 PCB’s and tested the operation before delivery to HiETA. The whole process took less than 4 weeks from concept to delivery.
Adrian Schmieder of HiETA commented; “Cubik’s quick turn-around of a functioning PCB has sped the delivery of the project and enabled me to focus on areas of the project in which HiETA has expertise. The project is a great success and produced valuable information even from its first use. I am very impressed with the support Cubik provided me throughout the project, from initial concept through to PCB delivery. I will not hesitate to engage with them again as future PCB projects arise.”
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Adrian Schmieder of HiETA commented: “Cubik’s quick turn-around of a functioning PCB has sped the delivery of the project and enabled me to focus on areas of the project in which HiETA has expertise. The project is a great success and produced valuable information even from its first use. I am very impressed with the support Cubik provided me throughout the project, from initial concept through to PCB delivery. I will not hesitate to engage with them again as future PCB projects arise.”
Speaking about the collaboration between Inductosense and Cubik Innovation, Founder and CTO Dr Chenghuan Zhong (Bamboo) stated: "It was great working with the knowledgeable and experienced team at Cubik Innovation. They always provide full support as well as useful and thoughtful advice to us, helping us find solutions for really difficult problems."
Geoff Jones, Aquabar Inventor: "It was a pleasure to work with Cubik on our project. Paul and Sam understood the concept at one meeting, and produced a solution filling the brief within two weeks which has enabled us to find a potential partner. We will certainly use Cubik for our production units later in the year, Many thanks."
Paul Davey, Associate Professor (SL) Plymouth University: "If you need a prototype developed to a high standard and on time you would be hard pushed to find someone better. They have highly trained, experienced engineers who get the job done."
Clean Energy Prospector Ltd
Damon Rand, Head Product Design: "Paul and the team have really helped us speed up the turnaround on our prototypes and assure the manufacturability of our designs. If you’re designing electronics in the South-West, then Cubik is a great choice for short-run manufacturing."