The Alstom group specializes in systems, equipment and services in the rail transport sector (high-speed trains, subways, tramways and e-buses). Operating in over 60 countries, the group works with 4,500 French suppliers, including ARMOR and Kimya! Alstom has been able to rely on our expertise and agility to find a bespoke response to their requirements – in record time! Below we provide a review of a (nearly impossible) assignment carried out at full speed by teams at Kimya for line no. 14 on the Paris métro!
The challenge set by Alstom to Kimya
The Alstom group called on Kimya to produce ventilation grids for a subway train. This challenge was significant for Kimya:
- Production of 16 grids using a material (equivalent to Ultem™ 9085) meeting the EN45-545 fire protection standard specific to rail transport (also known as fire/smoke certification).
- Production and delivery of the products within 7 days!
The response from Kimya to Alstom
Kimya Factory personnel first of all sought a material able to meet Alstom’s needs for this project. Given the deadline, the ideal material was the PEI 9085. The teams then mobilized their resources to rapidly verify the feasibility of the project by making immediately available to the Alstom Interiors Center of Excellence in Valenciennes:
- A stock of sufficient material for producing all the parts.
- High-temperature printers to commence the printing of the grids.
Focus on the Kimya Factory expertise mobilized for thisproject
Kimya personnel first demonstrated their responsiveness to Alstom by meeting their requirements in ultra-quick time. They also showed their agility by mobilizing their fleet of several dozen high-temperature 3D printers. They were running throughout the weekend to complete the printing in time!
The strength of Kimya Factory was also its ability to count on stocks being available at Kimya Materials. This is what enabled all the parts to be produced within the deadline! In practice, a single ISO9001-certified industrial site accommodates all the Kimya entities… enabling us to always guarantee our customers an ultra-rapid and effective service!
Our customers say it better than us…
“As of today, ALSTOM has printed over 31,000 parts! We produce tooling, spare parts and mass-produced parts that meet rail industry standards. Additive manufacturing is a real bonus for manufacturers. Thanks to several years of R&D, we are now able to offer robust 3D printed solutions to our customers and operators. All the participants in railway projects are satisfied! The designer is able to have its parts approved more quickly. The buyer is able to procure supplies in record time. And the project manager can meet the customer’s deadlines. In the coming years, we will be offering hundreds of plastic and metal 3D printed parts in our trains. Some parts can be several meters long.”
Aurélien FUSSEL – 3D Printing Program Manager – Additive Manufacturing Senior Expert