What do fishing products, flour mills, mosaics, bricks, surfboards, guitars, organs and titanium powder all have in common? Companies manufacturing these products (and many more) have all been featured in an AOL series called This Built America that covers industries and businesses in all fifty states. The series includes older established companies such as Tobasco and Airstream and newer businesses such as Sinola and Idaho Candy Company. When referring to America’s economic future, 3D printing references have become a staple ever since President Obama talked about its potential in a State of the Union address. 3D printing has received a mini-boom as more companies ride that wave, and we are again reminded about this fact due to the inclusion of titanium powder producers, Puris LLC, in AOL’s This Built America.
Representing the state of West Virginia in the series, Puris LLC is a new titanium powder manufacturing company that claims its current status as one of the only titanium powder producers in the world. Explaining how the new company’s mission relates to 3D printing’s future, CEO Craig Kirsh explains:
“Puris is part of a larger story taking shape in American manufacturing today around the advent of 3D printing. Ultimately, this technology will empower engineers in such industries as aerospace, automotive, medical and oil and gas, to re-imagine how parts are designed by alleviating the time and cost constraints of tool-and-die manufacturing. It is incredibly exciting to be at the front edge of the demand curve with a leading material for 3D printing, highly pure titanium powder.”
Titanium powder is a metal oxide known for its high compatibility with 3D printing/ additive manufacturing, but it’s also been known for being expensive to produce. With Puris LLC‘s entrance in this high-demand market–this places them in the lead, expanding 3D printing/ additive manufacturing access. In fact, as CEO Craig Kirsh explains,”Our technology is available to only a handful of companies in the world right now. We’ve engaged the leading metallurgists in titanium powder. And, we have the highest-capacity, refractory-free titanium powder plant in America.”
What also makes Puris’ appearance interesting, besides offering such a high-demand product, is that they employ younger workers: and there may be no better combination for future job training programs than young people and an emerging company like Puris. Andrew Ward, of This Built America, explains his own view of Puris’ potential contributions: “With 3-D printing emerging as a major influencer in manufacturing, This Built America feels Puris’s story offers a compelling look at the continuing evolution of their industry. Puris combines experts with younger workers — all demonstrating a passion for their American-made products. That is exactly what the series strives to celebrate in each episode.” This from a company located in economically depressed West Virginia will be an interesting project to watch indeed.