Dallara and Conflux develop 3D printed heat exchangers

On January 11, 2022 by Regina P released

Australian company Conflux Technology specializes in the manufacture of 3D printed heat exchangers for the aerospace, automotive and defense industries. The manufacturer recently entered into a partnership with the Italian car manufacturer Dallara. Dallara is known for its Formula 3 racing cars. Using metal 3D printing, specifically EOS solutions, and its CAD design expertise, the Conflux Technology team aims to develop higher performance heat exchangers and reduce production costs.

Heat exchangers are devices that transfer thermal energy from one fluid to another without mixing them. The exchangers have separate networks so that the fluids in question can circulate at different temperatures. A wall divides these networks and the temperature difference between the liquids allows heat exchange. These devices are vital in industries like automotive and require a degree of heat resistance. By using additive manufacturing in manufacturing, companies can realize more complex shapes, save material and thus optimize the overall costs.

Examples of heat exchangers from the 3D printer (Image: Conflux Technology)

Conflux Technology has also approached the motorsport sector with its developments and already has know-how on additively manufactured heat exchangers made of metal. The company designs bespoke jigs and develops them from the conception phase to post-processing. The requirements of the individual manufacturers are taken into account in each step. The company recently announced cooperation with the Italian company Dallara and announces that it will manufacture metal heat exchangers for their racing cars in the future. According to the company, the biggest challenge here is the size of these heat exchangers.

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Michael Fuller, CEO and Founder of Conflux Technology, states: “Conflux heat exchangers derive their performance from highly complex geometries that take advantage of the inherent freedoms of additive manufacturing. Dallara gave us an initial challenge to produce small heat exchangers that meet stringent performance, quality and cost targets. To achieve this, our engineers work together with the Dallara people with the ultimate goal of improving fundamental efficiencies in the automotive and motorsport sectors.”

The Conflux Core™ heat exchanger (Image: Conflux Technology)

At the start of the project, Conflux Technology carried out several CAD and CFD simulations in order to obtain a very detailed overview of the heat exchangers’ performance characteristics. Several iterations were then necessary to validate the geometry and test the models. In particular, to the properties of the component, such. B. the surface roughness to analyze. The company breaks this process down into four key steps: design, simulation, analysis, and iteration. A winning combination at Conflux Technology, which could be used in the future for the mass production of 3D printed heat exchangers! The official press release can be found HERE.

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