Professor Dr. Eng. Kiril Stoichev, DSc. (Econ.) opens of the ConferenceThe Institute of Metal Science, Equipment and Technologies with a Hydroaerodynamics Centre – BAS, respectively HIGH-TECH IMS LTD., has now a new laboratory for digital production. Modern equipment allows 3D modeling and quick prototyping of any constructions. “The new machine allows simultaneous use of 2 materials. It can model extremely complex structures and details that can not be made in any other way.”, says Stanislav Nanev. Plastics are mainly used – for example, photopolymers or thermoplastics such as ABS and PLA. It also works with a photopolymer that imitates foundry wax – it has the ability to burn without ash and can be used for direct metal casting.

“The idea is to make a prototype of the product that will allow us to see it closely, to clear all mistakes. Otherwise, we risk making a steel mold that will not be used just because of a small mistake. We are currently applying the technology for making prototypes of new defense products.”, Nanev underlined. In the laboratory he works with his colleague Vladislav Stoychev. Although the facility has been running for two months, there are already over 20 prototypes, including executed orders from external companies. Some of them have already entered serial production. “The laboratory was created with funding from the Institute. We received the enormous support of Academician Stefan Vodenicharov. We are currently working on the development of our own 3D printing machine with liquid photopolymers.”, also states Nanev.

The Institute of Metal Science/the HIGH-TECH IMS LTD. is the organizer of the Sixth National conference with international participation “Metal Science, Hydro- and Aerodynamics, National Security”. There the latest developments were presented by specialists from the Bulgarian Academy of Science and over 10 universities. The forum is held under the auspices of Academician Stefan Vodenicharov. Scientists from Romania, Russia, Turkey and Poland also presented their works and developments.

Delegates of the ConferenceThe Bulgarian scientists presented an analysis of the resources of the reactor hulls of Units 5 and 6 of Kozloduy NPP. The results obtained will allow a more accurate prediction of the changes in metal properties necessary for the justification of the blocks exploitation.

Development of the Institute together with the University of Rousse is a underwater robot that can examine the hulls of large vessels. The textual and visual information provided by it is of great importance for the safety and reliability of ships near coastlines. Conference guests also became acquainted with a prototype of sensory security systems, that enable decision-making in the face of a terrorist threat. Scientists are also working on innovative technology for the introduction of hard-wearing nano-sized powders in electrodes arc welding. It achieves an increase in the hardness of the welded nanomodified metal by over 40 per cent. High results were also shown by the modular system for automation of the welding processes with digital program control. It is used in machine building, mining and quarrying, transportation, energy and the defense industry to secure high-risk facilities. Successfully were passed the tests for a new nanoparticle coating method that has the potential to be used in the automotive and aviation industry.

Native technology for yellow paving

Technology for production of pavers with better characteristics than the famous yellow pavers in Sofia, develops a team from the department “Technologies and equipment for non-metallic materials” at the Institute of Metal Science. The scientists work together with a Bulgarian company from Popovo, which is interested in the production, reports Prof. Lyuben Lakov, head of the department. When creating the production model, scientists retained the characteristic color of the paving stones, which 100 years ago were imported from Austro-Hungaria. There is also a technology for creating white pavers with the idea of ​​using them for durable marking on the streets. The properties of the pavement have improved – for example, it will not be so slippery.

“Our research is related to materials such as ceramics, glass, superconductors, etc. We have designs for piezo ceramics, which are used as waterproofing for submarines. This is an example of how scientific work can be related to national security projects.”, Prof. Lakov tells. The team has also researchs on segnetoceramics – a material that can be used for batteries. Its advantage is that it allows work at high temperatures and, moreover, electricity does not dilute over time.