IDS and APES to Advance Electronics 3D Printing Sector via New Partnership

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Integrated Deposition Solutions (IDS) is partnering with Advanced Printed Electronic Solutions. IDS is a company that specializes in DIW inks and has an aerosol 3D printing technology. If you haven’t heard of them, they make the NanoJet system. IDS is much quieter than others in the electronics 3D printing space but is a credible player making actual parts. Another company focusing more on parts than press releases is Advanced Printed Electronic Solutions, which does application development and provides services for 3D printed electronics. We loved Rich Neill’s speech at Additive Manufacturing Strategies and appreciate how the company is accelerating the adoption of 3D printed electronics in a down-to-earth and straightforward way.

The two partner firms will aim to accelerate customer adoption of electronics 3D printing in aerosol printing. Design, industrialization, and manufacturing will hopefully be accelerated through their assistance in helping customers evaluate and adopt the technology. They believe that the electronics 3D printing landscape is too complex and that pilots are often fraught with difficulty. They also state that companies are “often incapable of realizing their product vision due to the variety of complexities associated with developing production products incorporating 3D printed electronics. Further, product concept development is often decoupled from the capabilities offered by 3D printed electronics, and therefore not considered during concept exploration and product definition, limiting potential innovation and product differentiation.”

The two firms will develop an entire methodology from initiation to production and make this a template-like process for clients. IDS is in charge of material formulations, machines, and other settings, while APES will help customers from idea to engineering, prototyping, and production. APES already has a Neotech AMT 5-axis machine with IDS’ NanoJet aerosol head in-house.

“A strategic partnership with Advanced Printed Electronics Solutions is a tremendous opportunity to aid NanoJet users as they move their project from concept to reality. Success in printed electronics relies on a viable application, well suited materials, and a reliable printer. IDS has created an aerosol printing platform with industrial reliability and now, leveraging APES application engineering strengths,have a development pipeline for advanced manufacturing integration. There is a lot of momentum and excitement around aerosol printing for advanced electronics packaging, biomedical, optical, and flexible hybrid electronics, applications and having a partner like APES who will work closely with clients to hone in on these use-cases is a really great resource we can now offer our customers,” said Dov Phillips, Sales Manager at IDS.

“By bridging the gap that exists today between product engineering teams and 3D printed electronics fabrication technologies, not to mention the significant expertise required across each, I believe we can accelerate customer product development and accelerate the process required from R&D to pilot manufacturing, followed by scaling as needed for production. A key part of this strategy is to benefit the customer by leveraging the combined expertise between IDS and APES in engineering while incorporating proven manufacturing technologies that are reliable and hardened 3D printed electronic solutions,” said APES CEO Rich Neill.

I think this is super smart. In regular 3D printing, we still require customers to buy machines and then figure things out by themselves without much help. It’s like buying a car without having a driver’s license and then learning to drive in order to become an Uber driver two years later. This is the current customer journey for 3D printing. However, EOS, 3D Systems, and SLM now have consulting and application development units that can help accelerate your additive adoption. This development is a rather recent one. You can focus on your needs, and they will show you how to design for the process and run the machines. In some cases, they could help you with the completed design, and you could run the machines subsequently.

Electronics 3D printing has been going on in labs, defense departments, and hidden applications for many years now. However, virtually all companies are completely in the dark about how the technology works, when it can be used cost-effectively, when it makes sense to use it, at what volume it can be used, and what the design guidelines are. It’s just a mythical technology that the three-letter agencies use for spy versus spy stuff, and besides them, no one has any idea. For this technology specifically, demystifying it, explaining it, and making the customer journey easy and effective is very important. If the duo can help customers implement it faster and more effectively, they will be leaps and bounds ahead of competitors. What’s more, if done correctly, this will really accelerate their market growth. The more people making more parts effectively, the faster their market will grow.

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