Additive manufacturing or 3D printing is gaining ground as an alternative to traditional manufacturing methods because it offers, among other benefits, significant advantages in terms of light weight. Additive manufacturing makes it possible to produce components that are not only light, but also stiff and have a high performance. The aerospace industry has been a pioneer in additive manufacturing, and now other sectors such as the automotive industry are following and are also increasingly making use of this technology.

Explore how our customers and partners found solutions and realize the full potential of additive manufacturing by applying a simulation-driven design approach and optimization techniques.

Please feel free to download what is of interest for you.

If you have any questions please contact:


Additive Manufacturing for Optimized Structural Elements at Arup

Case Studies, White Papers and Success Stories

First 3D-printed Motorcycle by APWorks (Airbus Group) called Lightrider. Altair's software OptiStruct was used for inspiration of the organic structure of the motorcycle.


APWorks Light Rider Optimization Process


The organic frame structures come from bionic algorithms generated with Altair's OptiStruct®. The use of optimization ensures an optimal load distribution.

How this was done can be read in the Case Study of the Airbus APWorks Light Rider soon.

Sign up to receive it as soon as it is online.

3D-Printing for Innovative Mold Manufacturing Combined with Simulation-Driven Design Process Push the Limits of Casting Technology


voxeljet, Click2Cast, HBM nCode and Altair present a technology demonstration that stands out with dramatic performance improvements and the solid potential for serial manufacturing and mass production. Bringing design optimization, fatigue analysis, casting, and 3D printing together addresses the challenges of lightweight design and enables the creation of an innovative design and manufacturing process that enhances performance and efficiency.

For more information download the white paper below.

Topology Optimisation of an Aerospace Part to be Produced by Additive Layer Manufacturing (ALM)

EADS Process

EADS Innovation Works, in collaboration with industrial and academic partners in the TSB funded AVLAM project,, wanted to understand whether there could be any technical and commercial viability of producing optimised ALM parts for aerospace. As an experiment they deployed HyperWorks’ topology optimisation tool, OptiStruct, part of the HyperWorks suite of CAE products, to see if optimising an Airbus A320 part could lead to similar benefits for optimising other small-scale parts.

For more information, download the case study below.

Designing and manufactureing the world’s first metal 3D printed bicycle frame using the freedom ofadditive manufacturing.


Chris Williams from Empire Cycles had been using Additive Manufacturing components in production for many years, but wanted the opportunity to test it out on a full bicycle product. He contacted Renishaw and explained the situation. The team at Renishaw thought that a standard simple part of the bicycle like the seat post would be the best fit for additive manufacturing and weight reduction, as this is a known entity and simple enough to validate and test.

In order to design the seat post component with less material and weight, Renishaw used solidThinking Inspire to perform concept generation. Inspire allowed Renishaw to quickly and easily generate the ideal part shape in the concept development stage of the design.

To read more, download the customer story below.

Topologically Optimized and 3D Printed Component on its Way into Space


Weight reduction is a decisive factor in the space industry, since the lighter a satellite is, the less it costs to send it into space. At the same time the component has to perform under extremely harsh conditions in space and during the launch procedure. Therefore it does not only have to be light but also extremely stiff. The requirement for ever lighter components has pushed the space industry to look for ways to save material and weight at every opportunity. As a result manufacturers are investigating the potential impact that new design techniques and manufacturing methods could have on the weight of their products.One such technology which is causing a stir in the industry is the rise of Additive Manufacturing (AM).

The goal of the engineers for RUAG was to take full advantage of the design freedom Additive Manufacturing offers and to create an aluminum component that would be significantly stiffer while at the same time lighter than the original design. In addition, RUAG’s engineers also wanted to cut down design and development time to get results and the final component faster.

Download below for the full story.

SOGECLAIR Aerospace Employs HyperWorks to Optimize Additively Manufactured Aircraft Components


The aerospace industry has long been a trendsetter in early adoption of new technologies as it strives to meet the challenges posed by regulatory and safety standards, high manufacturing and operational costs, and global competition. In recent years, reducing aircraft weight for improved performance and reduced fuel costs has been a primary focus of aerospace engineering efforts. SOGECLAIR aerospace, a major supplier for the aerospace industry, recently explored a new concept for an engine pylon, a critical component that holds an aircraft engine to the wing or fuselage. Their innovative approach combined topology optimization using OptiStruct, part of Altair Engineering’s HyperWorks software suite, and Additive Layer Manufacturing (ALM), also known as 3D printing. The project resulted in a 20% reduction in weight, a 97% reduction in the number of components and a structure as strong as the traditional one.

Combining Topology Optimization with Laser Additive Manufacturing Reveals New Potential for Lightweight Structures

LZN für Web seite.png

The TiLight research project clearly demonstrates the possibilities and advantages of combining topology optimization and laser additive manufacturing. A best practice process chain was developed, making it possible to design optimized models and  geometries. These geometries are oriented on natural structures and help tap the  component’s full lightweight potential as revealed by the combined methods.

To read more, download the success story with the Laser Zentrum Nord below.

Optimized Design for 3D Printed Valve Block Sheds Weight, Size and Gains Improved Performance


For the additive manufacturing project, VTT engineers chose the example of a valve block from Nurmi Cylinders, a Finland-based manufacturer of hydraulic cylinder products for offshore, industrial, marine and mobile hydraulics, and one of the project’s funders. Together the companies wanted to showcase what a design specifically targeted for additive manufacturing had to look like in order to fully benefit from the manufacturing method. The goals were to use additive manufacturing to reduce the size and the amount of material needed for the valve block, and to optimize and improve the valve block’s internal channels to produce a better component for the customer.