Back in 1973, Sir David McMurtry and John Deer built a touch-trigger probe invented by McMurtry to solve an inspection problem for the engines used on the supersonic Concorde aircraft, and the company they formed, Renishaw, is now a global force in additive manufacturing with more than 60 offices in 32 countries.
That innovative product led the company to create a three-dimensional co-ordinate measurement system to enable the accurate measurement of machined components and finished assemblies. Their products now include microscopes for spectral analysis of materials, gauging technologies, additive manufacturing and rapid prototyping devices, laser measurement and surveying systems, diamond-like carbon coatings, and shape memory alloys and medical devices for neurosurgery applications.
The company’s R&D and manufacturing is carried out in the UK, and based in Gloucestershire. The company also has assembly facilities near to Dublin, Ireland and in Pune, India.
Now Renishaw‘s 3D printing division in Stone has been relocated to a larger, state-of-the art, 90,000-square-foot facility in Stone Business Park. The company says the move represents their commitment to the additive manufacturing industry sector. Renishaw is the only manufacturer of metal additive manufacturing systems in the UK.
Robin Weston, the marketing manager of Renishaw’s Additive Manufacturing Products Division, says the new site in Stone will provide a showcase for the company’s expertise in fields from industrial metrology and spatial laser measurement to additive manufacturing.
“Our success is based on developing close partnerships with our customers to help them unlock the potential of additive manufacturing, which we see as an end to end process,” Weston says. “Our goal is to help our customers understand the full process chain and evaluate how to integrate with conventional technologies.”
Weston says this latest site in Stone will tie together a network of the company’s global additive manufacturing solution centers aimed at helping companies interested in the technology trial AM systems and evaluate the suitability of additive manufacturing in what they call a “hot cell,” before moving towards system ownership.
“The generous new site will also accommodate state-of-the-art training facilities and lecture rooms, as well as a large research and development area to help us keep ahead of industry demands. We want the new site to be a hub for innovative ideas and exciting projects around additive manufacturing,” Weston says.
He adds that the company expects this expansion to create 22 new jobs.
Renishaw’s laser melting process uses a high-powered, ytterbium fiber laser to fuse fine metallic powders together to form functional, 3-dimensional parts in layer thicknesses ranging from 20 µm to 100µm. This melting process then builds the part by distributing those layers of metallic powder and fusing them within a tightly-controlled, inert atmosphere. Parts are then heat treated and finished according to the requirements of a particular application.
The British Bloodhound SSC land speed record car is fitted with a titanium nosecone built with the Renishaw additive process.
What do you think of this latest move by the UK’s only manufacturer of metal additive manufacturing systems, Renishaw? You can let us know in the New Renishaw 3D Printing Facility forum thread on 3DPB.com.
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