Trumpf 3D prints parts for CERN

Trumpf has additively manufactured a component for a particle accelerator at the European centre for nuclear research, better known by its French acronym CERN, and which asks the really big questions in life, like ‘what is the nature of our universe’ and ‘What time is lunch?’. This has come about through the EU-funded I.FAST project that CERN coordinates.

This radio frequency quadrupole, used for particle beam acceleration, was additively manufactured on a Trumpf TruPrint 5000 green edition 3D printer.

The part itself is a radio frequency quadrupole or RFQ, which provides energy to the beam of particles bringing it close to the speed of light. Maurizio Vretenar from CERN, project coordinator of I.FAST, explains: “Over 30,000 accelerators are currently in use worldwide, the large majority of which is used for healthcare, and industry. Additive manufacturing can help reduce the size and cost of all accelerators types, by improving and shortening their fabrication and enhancing their performance.”

This RFQ is made of copper and this marks the first time that such a large copper component has been printed in one piece. It was designed specifically to be printed on Trumpf’s TruPrint 5000 green edition 3D printer, which uses a green laser. This has the advantage that the copper absorbs the green laser beam better than that of an infrared laser, meaning that users can choose to use less energy to be as fast as an infrared laser, or to work faster with the same energy.

Michael Thielmann, Product Manager Process & Process Development Additive Manufacturing at Trumpf, commented: ”This is proof that large copper components with a component height of nearly 400 millimeters can be manufactured additively with sufficient precision using our machines – or in other words – with 3D printing, we can manufacture even high-precision parts like this faster, cheaper and more energy-efficiently.”

He added: “This is where our TruPrint 5000 green edition comes into its own. Thanks to the green laser, we can print even the finest copper structures at a high and consistent quality, with increased productivity.”

The I.FAST project – Innovation Fostering in Accelerator Science and Technology – has been designed to help the EU develop and enhance leadership in particle accelerators for science and society. Toms Torims from RTU, who is I.FAST Work Package coordinator for advanced accelerator technologies, says that there is a focus is on 3D metal printing, noting: “It is evident that in the future, we will be increasingly using additively manufactured components within the accelerator community and our facilities”.

Naturally, Trumpf will be exhibiting at next week’s Formnext 3D printing show in Frankfurt, Germany. Trumpf will use the show to launch a new additive manufacturing machine, the TruPrint 1000, which is said to be three times as productive as its predecessor. Trumpf will also discuss the potential of new titanium, aluminum, stainless steel and tool steel alloys for additive manufacturing.

The company already uses 3D printing 24/7 to manufacture its own series parts as Richard Bannmüller, president and CEO of Trumpf Laser Technology Germany, points out: “The advantages of additive manufacturing outweigh all conventional manufacturing processes for some of our parts. For example, the TruPrint 3000 is crucial for us to use in-house.”

You can find further details about the company’s solutions for additive manufacturing from

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