Neles recently delivered their first valve with a 3D printed valve body for field testing. With exception to the body, the valve is a standard T5-series ball valve constructed of stainless steel materials. Neles started testing the suitability of 3D printing technologies for metal components many years ago and supplied the first valves with non-pressure retaining 3D printed metal components in 2018.
The field tests will provide a lot of valuable information on the feasibility of using 3D printing to produce pressure-retaining parts with significantly quicker delivery times. 3D printing also enables more efficient use of materials and optimized flow paths in noise attenuation trims, delivering superior performance compared to conventionally produced trims.
Image credit: Neles