In the world of 3D printing today we see many paths, from a multitude of industries, leading to metal 3D printing. Nearly everywhere we turn, we also see the influence and 3D printing innovation of Belgium’s Materialise. Undeniably, trends in the industry show a definite bend toward seeking the strongest and most versatile materials–and Materialise seems to have their hand in everything important.
Materialise is making it clear that their aspirations lie not only in strengthening their position in 3D metal printing, but also in creating the ‘most complete factory’ for 3D printing. Centered around their German facilities in Bremen, Materialise will be rolling out a new production line in October. The factory will be at the same site as their Metal Competence Centre for software. This will function as their fourth industrial production unit in the European corridor. Materialise also has their home factory in Belgium, along with others in Poland and the Czech Republic.
Materialise will be 3D printing in titanium, as they fulfill the needs of their industrial customers engaged in applications for sectors like that of automotive and more, as well as overall manufacturing.
Already operating with 120 3D printers globally that work according to numerous technologies, the Materialise team is credited with 3D printing an impressive 2,000 components every day–and shipping them all over the world. Obviously, this number will increase as they open their large new factory.
“In terms of commitment to the German market, this is an important step,” says CEO Fried Vancraen. “It allows us to manufacture parts close to our customers in aeronautics and the industrial goods industry. With this scalable site in Bremen, we clearly put metal printing on the agenda as a strategic part of our industrial offering.”
The team will be using one of the most well-known alloys for titanium, called TiAl6V4. Combining superior mechanical properties, while remaining lightweight, this particular titanium alloy is attractive for use in metal 3D printing because it can be used in demanding environments like aeronautics. Corrosion resistant, it can be used in a wide range of applications–and is popular with engineers who wish to use the titanium alloy for fabricating many different functional prototypes and high-quality, solid components.
“This operation solidifies the Bremen office’s role as Materialise’s Metal Competence Center,” said Marcus Joppe, Managing Director of Materialise. “Our team of specialists already have a strong understanding of the needs and challenges of metal AM and by starting this new production line, we will be able to expand our knowledge and apply it to the next generation of software while also offering high-quality manufacturing in titanium to our industrial customers.”
Ingo Uckelmann will be in charge of managing production for all 3D printing with TiAl6V4 taking place in Bremen. Uckelmann, who joined Materialise in July, brings along a solid background in metal printing with regards to the dental world, complementing Materialise technologies and interests.
Let us know your thoughts on this expansion in the Materialise in Germany forum thread on 3DPB.com.