Top 10 additive manufacturing and 3D printing companies

Although we’ve called this a top 10, it’s not really in any particular order – it’s just a list of 10 of the most well-known and perhaps most highly regarded additive manufacturing or 3D printing companies. 

If anything, it’s an impressionistic understanding of the market, taking into consideration size of the company, number of clients and general reputation.

We have not included software-only companies or providers of marketplaces without any hardware of their own – we’ve tried to concentrate on companies which manufacture 3D printers and the materials that they require.  Continue reading Top 10 additive manufacturing and 3D printing companies

Airbus chooses Stratasys system to 3D print components for new aircraft

Stratasys has been chosen by Airbus to supply 3D printing and additive manufacturing systems for the production of components for aerospace company’s new plane. 

Airbus has already used the Stratasys FDM 3D Production System to produce 1,000 flight parts for use on its A350 XWB aircraft.

The 3D printed parts use a resin called Ultem 9085, which is certified to an Airbus material specifications to have a high strength to weight ratio and to be resistant to flame, smoke and toxicity – necessary for aircraft interiors.  Continue reading Airbus chooses Stratasys system to 3D print components for new aircraft

3D printing startup Desktop Metal raises another $115 million in funding

desktop metal 6 DM Studio System-2

Additive manufacturing startup Desktop Metal has raised another $115 million in funding, bringing the total amount of financing to more than $200 million.

The company’s backers include Google, General Electric, and Techtronic Industries, the holding company for vacuum cleaner brands Hoover and Dirt Devil.

Desktop Metal was founded by four MIT professors, according to TechCrunch.com, which says its metal 3D process is “probably the most efficient” on the market.  Continue reading 3D printing startup Desktop Metal raises another $115 million in funding

Video: Dassault Systèmes to launch integrated new platform for 3D printing

Dassault Systèmes is planning to launch an integrated 3D printing platform in the next few months, according to a senior executive at the company. 

In an interview with RoboticsAndAutomationNews.com, Philippe Bartissol, vice president, industrial equipment industry, Dassault Systèmes, says the the initiative will be announced in the next two months.

The initiative will “address the complete ecosystem of 3D printing”, says Bartissol, adding: “It will not be only one customer using our platform extensively.

“It will be several players from several fields jointly working on one platform, with payment possibilities and delivery possibilities as well.”  Continue reading Video: Dassault Systèmes to launch integrated new platform for 3D printing

Renishaw 3D printing technology increases Land Rover BAR’s performance

land rover bar

Like many other cutting edge technologies – artificial intelligence, big data analytics – additive manufacturing, or 3D printing, has been incorporated into daily use at Land Rover Ben Ainslie Racing with the help of the team’s Technical Innovation Group.

In this case, TIG partner Renishaw, a global metrology firm which manufactures metal additive manufacturing machines, as well as working with the more familiar 3D printing in plastics for its own prototyping.

TIG project manager, George Sykes of PA Consulting, says: “We use 3D printing at three different levels within the team. The simplest level is as a prototyping and visualisation tool. We manufacture a large number of custom parts and 3D printing allows us to make full size prototypes in-house before we commit to a design.”  Continue reading Renishaw 3D printing technology increases Land Rover BAR’s performance

Siemens, Strata and Etihad team up to create 3D printed interiors for planes

etihad

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.

Under the partnership, a pilot project will develop 3D printing solutions for aircraft cabin interior products for Etihad, the UAE’s national carrier.  Continue reading Siemens, Strata and Etihad team up to create 3D printed interiors for planes

Hannover Messe: Smart materials paving the way to 3D printing and to the ‘microfactory’

3d printed supercar

Get your complimentary ticket to Hannover Messe 2017

There may or may not be slight differences between what’s called “3D printing” and “additive manufacturing”, but essentially both are advanced techniques that could spell the end of assembly lines as we know them. 

It’s a widely known historic fact that giant car companies pioneered what we now known as the assembly line, where a product – such as a car or any other complex item – would move along production line, where different workers and teams of workers would do their jobs and eventually a finished product would be the result.

This process, however, is now being reconsidered in an age where customers are asking for increaing amounts of customisation and new technologies such as 3D printing and additive manufacturing are making this customisation possible.  Continue reading Hannover Messe: Smart materials paving the way to 3D printing and to the ‘microfactory’

Boeing completes prototype parts for 777X wing at new billion-dollar advanced manufacturing facility

boeing 777x

Boeing says it has completed prototype parts for the wing of its new 777X Dreamliner aircraft

The company is using advanced manufacturing methods, including additive or 3D printing, in the construction of the passenger plane at its new $1 billion Everett, Washington facility.

When completed, the wing for the 777X will be the largest wing Boeing has ever built.  Continue reading Boeing completes prototype parts for 777X wing at new billion-dollar advanced manufacturing facility

OR Laser claims its 3D printing method will innovate jewellery industry

3d printed jewellery
3D printing can produce complex shapes but the finishing when it comes to metal has not so far matched traditional manufacturing methods

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.

During its 30-year history, 3D printing has already caused some serious disruption within the jewellery industry by facilitating new approaches to jewellery design and manufacturing.  Continue reading OR Laser claims its 3D printing method will innovate jewellery industry

Additive manufacturing or 3D printing? What’s the difference?

“Additive manufacturing” is increasingly used interchangeably with “3D printing”, so they essentially mean the same thing. The only difference seems to be that “3D printing” is used more by maker communities – hobbyists and inventors – and still retains some sort of novelty value, whereas “additive manufacturing” – despite being the newer term – is more likely to be preferred in industry circles, perhaps because it has the sound of an established technology. 

But it’s not really an “established” technology in the sense that it’s only been around for a relatively short time.

According to 3DPrintingIndustry.com, it was only in 2007 that a 3D printer was available for less than $10,000 – from a company called 3D Systems, which is today one of the most well-known providers of the technology.

The most advanced 3D printers still cost quite a lot of money, especially those used by high-end manufacturers, but there are good-quality, entry-level machines available today for as little as a few hundred dollars.  Continue reading Additive manufacturing or 3D printing? What’s the difference?

Formlabs raises $35 million in funding round led by Foundry Group and Autodesk

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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.

The new investment will enable Formlabs to scale its operations to meet growing customer demand worldwide, grow research and development efforts, and to extend Formlabs’ reach in the market and ecosystem.  Continue reading Formlabs raises $35 million in funding round led by Foundry Group and Autodesk

Xerox launches new 3D printer featuring a nozzle ‘half the width of a human hair’

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New Xerox 3D printers sport a nozzle which is almost too tiny to see with human eyes

Xerox says it has developed innovative architecture featuring tiny, stainless steel nozzles inside its new Direct to Object Inkjet Printer.

The company says this means it has created a new, label-less, on-demand method of personalising three-dimensional objects.

The nozzles are contained in print heads – about the size of a deck of cards – that accurately spray ink on objects as small as bottle caps and as large as football helmets. The printer can print on plastic, metals, ceramics and glass, eliminating the need for costly labels.  Continue reading Xerox launches new 3D printer featuring a nozzle ‘half the width of a human hair’

Stratasys to launch universal design-to-3D print application

stratasys grabcad 3d print

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.

Stratasys’ application is powered by a new, open architecture “design-to-3D print” workflow application, GrabCAD Print – residing on the popular GrabCAD SaaS platform and supported by a community of more than 3 million designers, engineers and students.  Continue reading Stratasys to launch universal design-to-3D print application

Manufacturers turn to industrial robots and 3D printing for growth

ai robot
Manufacturers are investing in artificial intelligence, 3D printing and robotics. Picture: Rolling Stone

Overall market expansion is limited, but manufacturers investing in robotics and automation to make the most of opportunities, says new report

Manufacturers are making the most robotics, 3D printing and artificial intelligence in an attempt to make the most of limited overall market growth, according to a new report by KPMG. 

The business consultancy conducted a survey which asked which technologies manufacturers will turn to in the hope of increasing market share.  Continue reading Manufacturers turn to industrial robots and 3D printing for growth