The company toolcraft from Georgensgmünd in Middle Franconia in Germany manufactures high-end precision parts, components and assemblies for different high-tech industries. Here the family company considers itself as a pioneer for new, innovative production technologies such as additive manufacturing and customised turnkey robot solutions. Together with partners from industry as well as research institutes and universities, toolcraft aims to develop complete solutions that are pioneering in their field. A crucial area is the aviation and aerospace industry, for which the company regularly undergoes certification processes.
In order to be allowed to produce components for the aviation and aerospace industry, the entire production environment of manufacturing companies has to undergo comprehensive certification. At the centre of this is Nadcap (National Aerospace and Defense Contractors Accreditation Program), a unique association of companies from the aviation and aerospace industry. Together they aim to ensure a standardised high level of quality within the sector and to implement special production processes in as cost-efficient a manner as possible. toolcraft was one of the first European companies that decided to go through the difficult Nadcap certification for 3D printing with metals in order to give themselves the competitive edge against their competitors in the industry. Successful certification involves documenting and creating transparency for the numerous process steps which take place before, during and after the LMF process with the 3D printer. Complete proof of the powder used is part of this process, along with verifying the component quality through an optical and tactile non-destructive surface test. Special attention is also placed on the LMF process. In addition to the monitoring of oxygen levels and air humidity in the build chamber, it must be verifiable, for example, that the laser power and shape of the laser beam within the TruPrint 3000 3D printer are coordinated in such a way that every part produced in it is exposed in precisely the same way.