April 18, 2017
KIKUKAWA is announcing the official launch of a metalworking research project in collaboration with METI (Kanto Bureau of Economy, Trade, and Industry, a regional branch of Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry) and Fukui University.
This launch comes in response to the confirmation of the receipt of a government grant offered by SME (Organization for Small and Medium Enterprises and Regional Innovation, JAPAN) that is overseen by the Japanese Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry and partly under co-jurisdiction with the Japanese Ministry of Finance.
Since 2011, KIKUKAWA has been researching for ways to ease the fabrication process of double curved panels. This was in response to the increasing demand to fabricate double curved products in a more efficient manner as the international architectural designs have become more complex with the development of 3D CADs.
One of the difficulties with 3D metal forming is that it traditionally requires 6~10 times more manufacturing lead-time and cost than its counterpart, the 2D panels, as fabrication relies on a seasoned metalwork expert and/or press forging with dies.
This research hopes to establish an automated die-less 3D metal forming technology that could fabricate a wide variety of small lot custom-made large sized metal products. This innovative research, said to be the first of its kind ran by a bespoke architectural metalwork provider, is planned to be completed in 2019.
For more information on KIKUKAWA’s 3D metal forming technology, click here.