Every year, Lancaster University’s Engineering Department rewards the best students for exceptional performance. Jack Bentley, a Chemical Engineering student at Lancaster University who did a Year in Industry (YINI) at Croft Additive Manufacturing Ltd. (CAM), won The Stopford Prize in 2021 for the best chemical engineering project.

Jack started his industry placement year at CAM in August, 2019. He was recruited to work on an innovative project about recycling end-of-life metal powders from Additive Manufacturing processes. Jack’s roles were to identify potential markets for recycled powder, design and costing of a powder separation and evaluation laboratory and evaluate services to be developed in-house and those to be secured externally.

Whilst at Croft, he conducted individual research into measuring particle size, sieving powders into size fractions, methods for repurposing metal powder, equipment for measuring powder quality, and plasma spheroidisation trials. Some of which was disrupted by the Covid-19 outbreak. As a result of his hard work, he was awarded the Industrial Cadets Platinum Level certificate by the Engineering Development Trust (EDT) for his Year in Industry at CAM.

Student Award for Innovative Project Research on Additive Manufacturing

In his final year at university, Jack continued his research to understand whether plasma spheroidisation is a suitable and financially viable method by which to recycle end-of-life stainless steel 316L powders in additive manufacturing. He had to overcome the Covid-19 restrictions, which limited his lab time to carry out tests. Despite the extra challenges, Jack was able to carry out the analysis and research for his project with the support from Lancaster University, CAM, Sheffield University and the Henry Royce Institute. He submitted his final report and has just been awarded The Stopford Prize for outstanding achievement within the ChemEng degree scheme.

Neil, Director at Croft, commented:
“This was a fantastic piece of work done by Jack with the support of Lancaster University showing great results. We would also like to thank the Henry Royce Institute for their support. As an SME, being involved with research at this level is amazing.”

About Croft Additive Manufacturing

A sister company of Croft Filters Ltd, CAM specialise in the additive manufacture of complex metal components. AM Design freedoms enable components to be designed and built to add value such as improved performance, light weighting, multi-part to single part, low volume production runs, prototyping, reverse engineering and supply chain value. The company continues to invest in developing AM technology and finding out applications to help Customers overcome unique filtration challenges.

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