Case study

Reducing product development costs for a gas turbine manufacturer

Our design team applied rapid prototyping methods to improve the product development cycle.

Our client continuously innovates to develop the design of their high value product range.

We work very closely with them in this process and our engineers are highly thought of in the innovation process. In this example we reduced the cost and timescales of developing an innovative design by introducing rapid prototyping methods.


Our team of specialists received the client’s preliminary design which did not meet their requirements. These requirements included manufacturability, rotor-dynamics, mass and speed.


We started by undertaking some baseline analysis of the rotor dynamics to understand the scope of the challenge. The analysis showed that shaft geometry needed significant modification to increase its stiffness, while also reducing its mass. Our team developed a number of improvement concepts and conducted trade studies to down-select the designs prior to detailed design studies.

We needed to work closely with the client’s engineers to ensure that the design would work with other parts of their system, including casings, cooling systems and electromagnetics.


Once we were happy that we’d optimised the design, we worked closely with the client's manufacturing teams. Timescales were too short to procure hard tooling, so we invested in 3D printing of plastic prototypes and fitted our parts on the actual machines that would manufacture our designs.

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