Siemens Adds More 3D Printers to Support 30-Year Rail Maintenance Contracts

When we first covered Siemens working with Deutsche Bahn to 3D print replacement parts for their trains, the scope was limited to German and UK rails. Now, Siemens Mobility Services is extending its reach into Russia with the installation of two additional Stratasys Fortus 450mc 3D printers to support 30-year service contracts for high-speed trains there.

Siemens Mobility Russia will use one machine in Moscow and one in St. Petersburg to produce replacement parts for Russian train company, RZD, to maintain 16 existing Velaro high-speed trains and another 13 planned trains. This is all part of Siemens Mobility’s Easy Sparovation Part network in Russia that’s intended to streamline the 3D printing and digital part ecosystem for train parts, further encouraging adoption of AM for replacement parts. Alexey Fedoseev, Head of Customer Services at Siemens Mobility Russia, explains, “We have already seen the success of the Siemens Mobility ‘Easy Sparovation Part’ business in Germany, where this technology has provided us time-per-part savings of up to 95% compared to traditional manufacturing methods.”

Thanks to the on-demand availability of replacement parts enabled by their 3D printers, Siemens Mobility Russia boasts a 99% fleet availability record. That’s an incredible uptime for a fleet of trains with so many different parts.

These availability figures would be physically impossible to achieve through external part sourcing and traditional manufacturing techniques alone, but Stratasys’ FDM 3D printers gives us the capability to cost-effectively produce the parts in-house, partially eliminating the need for warehousing or tools for a selected range of items. Alexey Fedoseev, Siemens Mobility Russia

The reduction of warehousing, logistics, and inventory all add up to significant cost savings for Siemens, and rapid turnaround times aren’t bad either. Stratasys has already acquired materials certifications from the industry’s regulatory bodies so it’s rather straightforward to manufacture new parts with their printers. Russia has some of the most extreme temperatures in the world so having materials that can handle the frigid environment is critical. “Thanks to the efficiency-driving capabilities of 3D printing, it’s no surprise that rail maintenance and service providers are continuing to adopt the technology to boost customer service, maintenance, and part-manufacturing,” said Bjoern Richter, Strategic Account Manager of Siemens at Stratasys.

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