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Computed Tomography Closes the Loop for TEI's Technologically Advanced Casting Processes

Started in 1918 as Automotive Pattern, TEI houses a foundry and comprehensive machine shop with 55 CNC machines. About 10 years ago, Oliver Johnson, TEI’s president, began to shift the company toward manufacturing prototypes of extremely high quality. The entire company soon converted to making high-quality parts, which remains TEI’s current focus. This important pivot led TEI to invest in new, advanced technologies including 3D printing for sand molds, simulation technology, low-pressure casting, computed tomography (CT) and X-ray inspection.

 “It was a massive adjustment to go from just testing tooling to making really high-quality prototypes,” said Oliver Johnson. “The traditional way of developing prototypes where you’d have a foundry doing trial and error was just too expensive, so we put 3D printed sand technology together with simulation. The third technology we linked up was computer-controlled, low-pressure casting so it’s identical every time we cast. We fill the molds fast, but in a very controlled way. The fourth technology when we put it all together was CT and X-ray. We worked with Yxlon and put in a very high-quality CT scanning system. Because that’s really how you close the loop.”

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