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Dubai Gets Closer To 3D Printing Metro Spare Parts

Dubai is getting closer to using 3D printing to manufacture spare parts for its metro. On Friday, the Roads and Transport Authority said it had made “significant progress” using the technology despite setbacks caused by the Covid-19 outbreak.

RTA and Serco, Dubai Metro’s maintenance contractor, are working with a specialist company to advance the 3D printing project.

“The use of 3D printing in several projects and applications helps develop new techniques and creative means capable of contributing effectively to making Dubai the smartest city in the world,” said Mohammed Al Amiri, director of maintenance at the authority.

The RTA is working on 3D printing spare parts for Dubai Metro. Courtesy: Roads and Transport Authority
The RTA is working on 3D printing spare parts for Dubai Metro. Courtesy: Roads and Transport Authority

He said the RTA used 3D printing to support frontline workers during the National Disinfection Program by manufacturing mask strap clips.

Mr Al Amiri said they used the same technology to manufacture some metro spare parts that saved 90 per cent of the time usually taken up by sourcing the parts through conventional means.

It also saved 50 per cent of the original cost, he said.

The focus on adopting 3D printing in transport followed a 2016 directive from Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid, Vice President and Ruler of Dubai, for 25 per cent of all construction in the emirate to the technology by 2030.

Soon after, the RTA began planning to use 3D printing to manufacture a pedestrian bridge, Hatta Gate, a bus stop and a marine station.

Last year, Dubai unveiled the largest 3D printed building on the planet.

After a year of testing to ensure the project in Warsan meets strict building standards, the emirate’s latest hi-tech development went on public display in October last year.

Dubai Municipality said the building was now entered into the Guinness Book of World Records as the first two-storey printed building.