Porsche’s 3D-printed pistons
Porsche is utilising 3D printing to manufacture special pistons for its high performance GT2 RS that liberate a further 30hp.
This is the first time Porsche has used 3D printing to make a component for one of its production engines. The pistons are manufactured from high-purity metal powder using the laser metal fusion process.
This 3D process allows Porsche to manufacture the piston in a way that conventional forging simply can not. As a result, Porsche says the piston’s structure is optimised more precisely and they weigh ten percent less than the regular forged items. They have an integrated cooling duct in the piston crown that is simply not possible to produce by conventional methods.
Porsche says the lighter piston lets them increase the engine speed, lower the temperature load and optimise combustion. The result is an additional 22kW of power while they also make mention of a slight improvement in efficiency.
Porsche currently uses the manufacturing technique during prototype construction and to reproduce parts for its classic models that are now out of production.