The Future of Additive Manufacturing

Image: © HSSMI


We touch the future of industrial manufacturing

For industrial 3D printer manufacturers, business means more than bringing better and faster machines to market every year. During last year’s The Event for the Design Show in Birmingham, market leaders including 3D Systems, Stratasys, HP, Desktop Metal, EOS, BASF or GE Additive focused their presentations on holistic solutions, new materials and quality assurance to advance Additive Manufacturing (AM) and to make AM more accessible for mass production. Yet, automotive manufacturers are still not willing to invest in AM. This is due to a fear of failing to deliver sound and economically feasible products. This results in automotive manufacturers sticking to what they know.


Additive Manufacturing Industry is evolving faster every year

New technologies are coming in to the market every year, making the AM industry more innovative than almost any other industrial sector. This is evident at many AM events around the world, including Formnext and Euromould.

In 2018, at the Formnext exhibition in Frankfurt, the number of exhibitors exceeded 630 up from 393 exhibitors in the previous year, indicating the dynamic growth set to continue in the coming years. The exhibition saw the release of new innovative AM machines and peripherals. The machines were able to integrate with each other on the shop floor, to form an ecosystem between all AM technologies – thus creating a complete AM solution.


Pioneering AM

AM gives designers and manufacturers the ability to print an innovative and bespoke product and component that render previous competition obsolete. This has happened with niche markets such as, hearing aids and dental aligners. Currently, the aerospace industry is tapping into AM technology, allowing them to create environmentally friendly products, to help reduce their carbon footprint.

AM technology is becoming a rapidly integrated technology that manufacturers can take advantage of. With a multitude of benefits, AM allows manufacturers to introduce a product into the market place at a faster rate. Enabling the end user to have a wider range of products to choose from.

For wider acceptance of AM, the key is to match the appropriate applications for a specific machine that suits component requirements. HSSMI helps provide that ability to de-risk AM and mitigate any setbacks. HSSMI employs CAD tools for AM-built simulations and designing for AM (DFAM).

These tools allow the option to create lightweight components which can enhance the vehicle performance. Moreover, HSSMI incorporates the use of specialised software tools, to create a virtual shop floor layout to capture production throughput. This way, no room is left for scepticism and opening the door for AM implementation.

AM is promising area in manufacturing engineering and guarantees to stay in the headlines for the years to come. Stay up to date with my LinkedIn page to be up to date with everything Addictive Manufacturing.


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Written by:

Stavros Tsitsopoulos


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