GE Additive and Vera Announce Partnership to Secure 3D Printing Workflow

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GE Additive and data protection company Vera have announced a new partnership centered around a technology integration that secures the entire additive workflow, from design to print. Design engineers can now protect and encrypt their proprietary designs before moving to the next step in their build preparation workflow, or upon final submission to GE Additive 3D printers.

“Today’s additive workflow uses a vast array of unsecured mix of tools, technologies, and formats,” said Lars Bruns, software leader at GE Additive. “To help the industry grow and lower barriers of adoption, we need to drive towards a secure, more integrated workflow that protects design IP from theft or illegitimate use at the point of design. Together with Vera, we’re enabling usability and efficiency from the design creation in CAD tools all the way to the final 3D printed part of a machine.”

Engineers can now use Vera’s data-centric security along with GE Additive’s new Build Preparation workflow services to secure their workflows. GE Additive is using Vera’s native SDK to protect files throughout the entire document and printing life cycle. This will also ensure continuous security beyond the build preparation workflow to secure powder and material parameters, machine configurations, part printing and more with end-to-end encryption and advanced data protection.

GE and Vera originally partnered up last year, and GE has since been using Vera’s security platform to protect its own intellectual property. In addition to security from design inception throughout the entire 3D printing workflow, Vera’s dynamic encryption travels with the designs everywhere, so there’s no need to rely on secure storage systems. Full data visibility and reporting allow users to understand how content is used and by whom, and to investigate unauthorized access attempts with detailed reports for SOC. Access can be revoked instantly from any individual, device, group or location.

“Being the first to bring secure 3D printing to market marks a seminal moment for Vera,” said Carlos Delatorre, CEO of Vera. “GE Additive has elevated the state-of-the art of manufacturing with its 3D printing technology and techniques. Together we are ensuring that technology is fully secure. 3D printing changed the face of manufacturing by putting the power to manufacture even the most complex designs in the hands of almost anyone. But that power comes at the cost of risking billions of dollars intellectual property from design to production. Our announcement today mitigates that risk dramatically and helps secure the overall workflow.”

In addition to the partnership with Vera, GE also announced partnerships with Autodesk, PTC and Siemens PLM Software, as well as a collaboration agreement with Dassault Systèmes. The terms of each agreement were not disclosed.

GE is at formnext this week and demonstrated its forthcoming digital workflow software solution, as well as announcing its plans to introduce a suite of secure build preparation services next year. The workflow solution simplifies the additive manufacturing process and enables an interoperable workflow. Currently, the 3D printing industry uses a wide variety of build preparation tools, technologies, interfaces and licenses, which creates more complexity for designers. GE wants to create a common experience through a single tool that reduces design iterations and speeds up the time to print.

(L to R) Jason Oliver, President & CEO, GE Additive, Karsten Heuser, Vice President Additive Manufacturing, Andreas Saar, Vice President, Manufacturing Engineering, Siemens PLM Software & Lars Bruns, software leader, GE Additive

Finally, GE is inviting interested parties to participate in beta testing through its Software Advisory and Technical Preview program.

“Feedback is a critical activity in the development of any software system, which is why we are demonstrating our current capabilities in Frankfurt,” said Bruns. “Over the next eight months, we’re seeking customer input from our users to help us inspect, adapt and iterate ahead of our commercial launch.”

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