Additive Manufacturing

COMSENSO. New laser-assisted WAAM technology for metal components


Currently, additive manufacturing technologies (AM), and in particular Direct Energy Deposition technologies (DED) , which include Wire-Arc Additive Manufacturing (WAAM) technology based on the GMAW process (Gas Metal Arc Welding), are attracting increasing interest from the industry and experiencing very significant growth. Despite reaching a high fill rate, WAAM technology still does not compete with traditional manufacturing processes, which is mainly due to the difficulty of guaranteeing the quality of the manufactured part and the lack of process stability.


The main objective of the COMSENSO project is to develop a new additive manufacturing technology for metallic components based on laser-assisted technology WAAM (L-WAAM) , which will allow overcoming the main barriers faced by AM, namely: reaching a high productivity and guarantee the manufacture of multi-material components with zero defects. Therefore, it is about developing a new additive manufacturing process aimed at manufacturing large parts. In particular, within the framework of the project, multi-material systems in steel/invar and stainless/Inconel will be addressed for the aeronautical and metal-mechanical sectors, although the developments will be extrapolated to many other sectors (railway, energy, etc.).COMSENSO intends to achieve the following technical objectives:


1 Development of the L-WAAM process:


  • a.Development of a new fiber-coupled high-power diode laser source.
  • b.Development of an L-WAAM head that allows combining the laser beam with the electric arc.
  • c.Development of the process of embedding FBGs sensors in manufactured parts for monitoring during service life.


2.Development of a digital platform L-WAAM:


  • a.Generation of a digital twin of a manufactured part.
  • b.Development of an online process monitoring and control system based on capturing and analyzing images taken by means of an infrared camera.
  • c.Development of an intelligent manufacturing assistance system capable of predicting the appearance of possible defects in the part.

3) Development of an integrated L-WAAM cell:


  • a. Demonstrator manufacturing.
  • b. Technical-economic analysis of the solution.
  • c. Product life cycle analysis.

The COMSENSO consortium is made up of the following entities:


  • INESPASA – Company based in Sevilla, with more than 30 years of experience in development of integral solutions for Aerostructure projects: Design and Manufacture of Tooling, Manufacture of Mechanized Elementals and Assembly of Subassemblies.
  • SYSPRO – Company based in Nigrán (Pontevedra), specialized in technical engineering services in the fields of automation, integration, industrial software and artificial vision.
  • BEZZIER – Company based in Gijón, specializing, on the one hand, in development and marketing of industrial software solutions aimed at automating manufacturing and improving productivity and, on the other, in the production of metal parts by additive manufacturing using WAAM technology.
  • MONOCROM – Company based in Barcelona, the only company at a national level that develops diode lasers that represent standard and customized solutions for medical-aesthetic, industrial and defense applications.NIT – Company based in Boadilla del Monte (Madrid), whose main business is manufacturing and marketing high speed uncooled detectors and sensitive systems in the medium wave IR spectral region (MWIR / 1-5 microns).