DB ESG has extensive experience in digital manufacturing for the UK rail sector, having started our journey with 3D printing and 3D scanning technology in 2018. Since then, rapidly expanding into the supply of digitally manufactured parts for the purposes of prototyping, tooling, and final part manufacture.
DB ESG has been in operation since 1995 and was part of English, Welsh & Scottish Railway (EWS) until EWS was purchased by Deutsche Bahn in 2007. This acquisition meant ESG was placed as an independent subsidiary of DB Schenker Rail UK.
In 2011, an inter-group transfer meant DB ESG and its related Approvals & Auditing body, Railway Approvals Limited (RAL) became subsidiaries of DB Systemtechnik (DBST), Europe’s largest rail engineering consultancy. DB ESG would go on to grow into a leading Rolling Stock Engineering Consultancy in its own right with over 60 employees.
A meeting between DB ESG, Angel Trains and Stratasys in Feb’ 2018 kickstarted our journey into digital manufacturing. Initial work focused on additive manufacturing – on different materials, compliance and testing before further investigation work around finishing and production was undertaken.
An armrest and seat-back hand hold became the first ever 3D printed parts to enter service in the UK. The parts were fitted to a Class 165 train in the summer of 2019 and the parts remain in operation to this date.
DB ESG acquire an in-house 3D printer to produce rapid prototypes for design validation and testing. This printer is regularly used to this day to support our large scale integration projects along with tackling obsolescence and supply chain issues.
Supply of digitally manufactured parts using CNC machining delivered to customers to provide like for like replacement parts that are currently no longer available. The first powder based 3D printing process (Multi-Jet Fusion) was used to manufactured an approved for use rail part.
Additive casting was trialled and approved. This process involved additively manufacturing the pattern/mould for the part to be traditionally cast using the original material specification. This part was a yaw damper bracket for EMR in collaboration with Angel Trains Limited.
Two 3D scanners purchased in order to carry out site surveys and re-engineer parts with identified obsolescence issues. The addition of these 3D scanners allow the whole re-engineering process to be completed in house by DB ESG.