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TÜV SÜD issues first ever certificate for additive manufacturing of materials and semi-finished products for pressure equipment to KSB

Pressure equipment must comply with the requirements of the EU Pressure Equipment Directive 2014/68/EU. This also applies to materials and semi-finished products that are additively manufactured and used in or as pressure equipment. TÜV SÜD has now issued its first ever certificate to an additive manufacturer of materials and semi-finished products using a QM system in line with PED 2014/68/EU, Annex I, Clause 4.3. The pioneering certificate is based on a new TÜV SÜD certification programme which covers the requirements of the Pressure Equipment Directive and other relevant standards.

3D printing offers pressure equipment manufacturers the opportunity to overcome the limitations of conventional manufacturing methods in order to implement complex geometries such as hollow bodies or lattice structures as well as economical small-volume production of equipment. However, manufacturers are faced with the challenge of having to prove that their additive manufacturing products comply with the applicable legal requirements.

For this purpose, TÜV SÜD has developed a new certification programme which covers the general safety requirements of the EU Pressure Equipment Directive and the corresponding application of EN 13445, clause 3.1. “When developing the certification programme, we took into account the requirements of the Pressure Equipment Directive and the normative requirements for unfired pressure vessels, but also added in our own very extensive experience with materials and welding technology”, says Gunther Kuhn, Head of Product Management in the Plant Safety business unit of TÜV SÜD Industrie Service GmbH. With this programme, TÜV SÜD's experts have established a reliable basis for assessing and certifying process quality in additive manufacturing of pressure equipment.

The certification programme was successfully implemented for the first time in a pilot audit at KSB SE & Co. KGaA. KSB is a leading supplier of pumps and valves and a pioneer of one-stop solutions in metal-based additive manufacturing using powder-bed fusion (PBF). “In addition to ultra-modern technology and equipment, we have expertise in materials and the entire additive manufacturing process of stainless steel, nickel-base alloys and other mainly iron-based metal powders”, says Dr. Alexander Böhm, Head of Material Technology / Additive Manufacturing at KSB. KSB’s Additive Manufacturing Centre in Pegnitz has fully equipped production facilities and one of the world's largest plants for metal-based additive manufacturing using powder-bed fusion.

End-to-end monitoring of the process chain

At KSB, the experts from TÜV SÜD Industrie Service GmbH carried out an audit assessing the processes and quality assurance in the company’s additive manufacturing of pressure equipment according to the EU Pressure Equipment Directive. “Successful audit completion provides proof that our development and advancement of 3D printing technology is on track and that we fulfil very high quality standards”, emphasises Stefan Dötsch, Head of Foundry KSB. Certification according to the Pressure Equipment Directive by TÜV SÜD Industrie Service GmbH offers KSB important competitive edge. “Third-party certification enables us to prove that our additively manufactured products meet all relevant legal requirements”, explains Dötsch. Gunther Kuhn assumes that after the successful audit, the certification process will be completed in about two months.

Further information on this topic can be found at https://www.tuev-sued.de/plants-buildings-technical-facilities/focal-topics/new-pressure-equipment-dircetive-2014-68-eu and www.ksb.com.

Additional information: In addition to its services in the regulated sector according to PED 2014/68/EU, TÜV SÜD offers a comprehensive service portfolio for component, machine and materials manufacturers and for qualification of personnel in all sectors using additive manufacturing. Further information can be found at https://www.tuvsud.com/en/industries/manufacturing/machinery-and-robotics/additive-manufacturing.

Press-contact: Dr Thomas Oberst

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