DNV GL—a Norway-based global quality assurance (QA) and risk management company—has published its first classification (class) guideline for additive manufacturing (AM) in the maritime and oil and gas industries.
The class guideline—titled DNVGL-CG-0197 Additive manufacturing - qualification and certification process for materials and components—aims to help manufacturers and sub-suppliers of materials and parts as well as service suppliers and end-users ensure that parts created using AM afford the same levels of QA and functionality as those produced using traditional manufacturing processes.
DNV GL began its investigation into the potential of AM for maritime and oil and gas industries in 2014 and having now released the class guideline is ready to support customers and industry stakeholders in the technology’s adoption. Metal AM processes are said to be of particular importance to the sectors since they have already been successfully deployed in the creation of a variety of parts and products, such as screw pins, bearing shells, box heat exchangers and propellers.
The class guideline sets out a clear pathway for AM certification and DNV GL is said to have the processes in place to assess all parameters that impact the final products, from the material used to technology assessment, manufacturing procedure qualification, data transfer and the actual printing and post-processing.
Marit Norheim, vice president (VP), material specialist at DNV GL–Maritime, said: AM parts that perform the same functions as those produced in traditional manufacturing environments must offer the same levels of quality assurance. Similarly, the companies that have designed the parts must protect their intellectual property, so that customers can be sure they are receiving genuine products that are guaranteed fit for purpose. This is why this guideline is so important to all industry stakeholders.’
Knut Ørbeck-Nilssen, chief executive officer (CEO) of DNV GL–Maritime, added: ‘Additive manufacturing means products and components can be printed according to local needs, or even on board ships and offshore installations. This equates to less lead time, less cost, less labor, less logistics and less need to keep stocks of spare parts. AM can also be used for maintenance and repair, simply adding layers of material to worn components, thus negating the need to replace them.’