The terms “additive manufacturing” and “3D printing” are used interchangeably, although it seems additive manufacturing suggests an industrial context whereas 3D printing has become so widespread that it could be considered a consumer technology now.
The majority of those who use such processes are, however, makers or manufacturers, meaning they’re on the supply side of the economy rather than the demand side.
HP, one of the world’s largest manufacturers of computer technology, and Deloitte Consulting have partnered to provide a range of products and services intended to help industrial companies to digitise their operations.
The idea of digitalisation is still something many industrial companies are getting used to, and it’s something that has yet to be fully realised.
Siemens, Strata and Etihad Airways have signed an agreement to work together to develop the first 3D-printed parts for aircraft interiors in the Middle East and North Africa.
The partnership aims to “revolutionize” the aerospace industry, leveraging additive manufacturing, known as 3D printing, to help airlines to improve their designs, including making complex parts on demand and manufacturing discontinued parts.
OR Laser believes the jewellery industry will be the main beneficiary of Orlas Creator
OR Laser believes it is on the cusp of further innovate the jewellery industry with the introduction of its new and accessible metal additive manufacturing system, the Orlas Creator.
OR says its Orlas Creator offers an “economically profitable” metal system with “superior speed and productivity gains by way of its unique” circular build-platform design in combination with a proprietary, rotation-led precision coater blade that will bring new value creation opportunities for jewellery brands.
Formlabs, the designer and manufacturer of 3D printing systems, has raised $35 million in Series B funding from Foundry Group and Autodesk, and says it plans to collaborate strategically with Autodesk.
The latest investment round, led by Foundry Group, includes participation from existing investors DFJ Growth, Pitango Venture Capital, and Cagni Ventures, bringing Formlabs’ total investment to date to $55 million.
Adidas has unveiled the first product to be created at its industry-changing SpeedFactory facility in Ansbach, Germany – in its Futurecraft MFG (Made for Germany) series, 500 pairs of which will be sold to the general public.
Designed to provide the “ultimate fit”, Adidas claims its Futurecraft MFG shoe is the first step in what Adidas believes will be a “game-changing” moment for the industry – mainly because the system customises the shoe for the shapes and motions of the individual customer’s feet.
The shoe is the first high performance footwear to come out of the Adidas SpeedFactory, which will ultimately allow for the creation of footwear made for the specific fit and functional needs of consumers.
The SpeedFactory is the name given by Adidas to its advanced manufacturing facilities, featuring high levels of robotics, automation and 3D printing. The first one was opened in Germany, and another one is being built in the US.
New research from AXA suggests small firms in the UK are sceptical about the prospects of next-gen tech – from 3D printing, and smart homes, to robotics and driverless cars – reaching their workplaces.
While more than 40 per cent of small businesses don’t yet have a website, the study found that most of them do plan to move online in the next twelve months. If these plans are fulfilled, only 7 per cent of UK businesses will remain offline by this time next year. Few are ready to plunge deeper into the digital revolution, however.
Just one in five plan to migrate to the Cloud in the coming years, and only six per cent of business owners say they expect to adopt smart technologies. Driverless cars, which are set to hit UK roads as early as 2020, have an equally low resonance, as just 8 per cent of business owners expect they will drive one. Continue reading Are Britain’s small firms ready for robotics and automation?
Stratasys, a maker of 3D printers, has embarked on an ambitious plan to become more of a software company by launching a design application built using open source standards
Stratasys says GrabCAD Print is built on a proven, cloud-based SaaS platform and a “new business intelligence environment”, which will make designing and making 3D printing “easier, more intuitive and readily accessible”.
Stratasys is known as 3D printing and additive manufacturing solutions company – it’s a hardware company. But the new software strategy is designed to make 3D printing significantly easier, more intuitive and highly accessible – which, in turn, will expand the company’s market into the software sector.