VIDEO: 3D printing for end-use parts


Cabin Management Solutions (CMS) is using two X7 industrial carbon fibre 3D printers from Markforged to print end-use parts for cabin management projects on luxury aircraft.

Markforged is the creator of the integrated metal and carbon fibre additive manufacturing platform, The Digital Forge.

CMS was founded in 2019 and works frequently with aircraft MRO companies and individual aircraft owners to design and develop cabin control and entertainment systems for private and business aircraft. The company uses Onyx FR to fabricate custom parts designed to be high in strength and low in weight, while offering flame retardancy and FAA compliance.

“In the aerospace industry, quality and on-the-fly adaptability are crucial to success,” said Jeff Pike, vice president of engineering at CMS. “We often have to produce low-volume, high-value parts from scratch, which can be time- and labour-intensive. Markforged’s X7 allows us to do this quickly and more efficiently, while ensuring functionality and retaining the upscale aesthetics expected in luxury aircraft.”

On one aircraft in particular, the CMS team printed at least 100 different parts, including approximately 20 light switch panels, a cabin climate controller, latches, release buttons, USB-C and drop-in USB-A chargers, and adjustable touchscreen brackets – all using the X7 printer.

To meet the demands of its luxury-oriented customers, the CMS team adds an extra level of customisation via overlays that mimic upscale cabin surfaces, including gold metal electroplating and wood veneer.

CMS plans to continue leveraging Markforged’s additive solutions, especially with the recent release of Onyx FR-A and Carbon Fibre FR-A – aerospace-ready versions of its Onyx FR and Carbon Fibre FR materials. These two new materials come with full material traceability and are undergoing qualification on the Markforged X7 printer via a programme conducted by the National Centre for Advanced Materials Performance (NCAMP).

“CMS has incorporated Markforged technology into their business in a way that enables them to maintain their reputation for high quality and give themselves competitive advantage,” said Shai Terem, Markforged president and CEO. “Our technology is not only about printing parts faster and at the point of need, but also giving aerospace manufacturers the confidence that their parts meet the regulatory and functional requirements of their industry.”

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Izzy has been part of the Business Jet Interiors International team since its second issue, and the editor since 2011. She also edits Auditoria and Railway Interiors International. Outside of work, Izzy is rediscovering her love of art by learning how to paint with watercolors.

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