SPEE3D Releases Expeditionary Manufacturing Unit for Cold Spray 3D Printing


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SPEE3D, the Australian original equipment manufacturer (OEM) of cold spray additive manufacturing (CSAM) systems, has released an end-to-end deployable production unit for metal parts. The new product, called the Expeditionary Manufacturing Unit (EMU), includes the company’s XSPEE3D containerized CSAM cell, along with the SPEE3DCell unit for testing and post-processing.

Since beginning its work several years ago with various military organizations around the world, and especially since the fall 2022 release of the XSPEE3D — a cold spray printer ruggedized in a shipping container — the company has increasingly prioritized its technology’s deployability. The company’s focus has paid off, with SPEE3D’s printers now being used on the frontlines of Ukraine, by the Japanese military, and in NATO exercises by the British army.

In a press release about SPEE3D’s release of the EMU, the CEO of SPEE3D, Byron Kennedy, said, “The launch of our Expeditionary Manufacturing Unit addresses the current state of the global supply chain, which is fragile and increasingly under pressure. Part of the issue for defense and other heavy industries is getting critical equipment up and running quickly to avoid costly production delays. EMU will enable the British Army and others to take control, giving them the ability to print and post-process parts very quickly from anywhere.”

A spokesperson for the UK Army said, “Through its continual program of modernization, the British Army embraces new innovative manufacturing solutions to keep it at the forefront of emerging technology and at a tactical advantage over its potential adversaries. Our collaboration with SPEE3D has produced the world’s first fully field deployable 3D cold metal printing capability, heralding a step change in deployable engineering capabilities for our forces deployed overseas.”

With so much success in the defense space, it’s natural to wonder which sectors SPEE3D will set its sights on next. In an interview I did with Byron Kennedy in the fall of 2022, “SPEE3D’s Metal 3D Printing Poised for 2023 Breakout,” he pointed to the maritime and mining sectors.

Along those lines, oil & gas seems like the most logical progression from where SPEE3D is currently. For one thing, the oilfield services industry is particularly well positioned for growth right now, suggesting the demand will be there for a technology enabling in-situ repairs of drilling and transport equipment. For another, the same cooperation between the US, UK, and Australia on defense also carries into the energy sector.

Thus, SPEE3D is an ideal candidate to seize the opportunity for distributed 3D printing represented by the Red Sea supply chain disruptions, as well as all the many other ongoing, volatile shifts to the physical landscape of global trade. Moreover, the expansion into post-processing gives the company an additional edge to capitalize as other companies also turn more towards deployable manufacturing solutions.

Images courtesy of SPEE3D

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