Mar 23, 2016 | By Alec
It looks like Additive Industries is heading for a bright future. Only yesterday, we reported that the company shipped the first of its room-filling industrial MetalFAB1 Beta 3D printer to Airbus’ high tech subsidiary Airbus APWorks. But today, during the fourth edition of its Additive World Conference in Eindhoven, The Netherlands, the company revealed that the other two Beta versions of the MetalFAB1 3D printer have also been purchased: by Dutch food technology specialists Kaak Group and by US-based manufacturing specialist United Grinding Group. This means the first generation of the MetalFAB1 has been sold out within just three months.
Additive Industries, as you might know, is a Dutch high tech business with strong roots in the laboratories of Eindhoven. Dedicated to taking metal 3D printing to industrial partners, they have been working on their own industrial 3D printer since 2012. Key to their technology is a seamless integration of modular 3D printing and an information platform for high-end industries, such as the aerospace, automotive, medical sectors.
The young company certainly delivered in that respect with the eight meter long MetalFAB1. Boasting very high levels of productivity, tons of feedback control options, calibration strategies and optimized use of automated build plates and product handling, it’s an excellent option for industries seeking to adopt metal 3D printing. “The modular design of the MetalFAB1 3D printer allows for customer- and application-specific process configuration. Multiple build chambers with individual integrated powder handling make this industrial 3D printer the first to combine up to four materials simultaneously in one single machine,” they previously revealed us. “The MetalFAB1 can be equipped with a maximum of four full field lasers, thereby eliminating the need for stitching when printing large objects. MetalFAB1 is also the only system to include a furnace for integrated stress relief heat treatment. The size of a single build envelope (420x420x400 mm) places the MetalFAB1 among the top 3 largest 3D metal printers available.”
The first of those machines, which were finished in late 2015, was sold to Airbus APWorks. Only yesterday, it was revealed that Airbus is planning to 3D print up to half of all components for its future airplane fleet, and this 3D printer worth $1.8 million is expected to play a big role in that.
And at the ongoing Additive World Conference in Eindhoven, the company revealed their other to Beta customers. The Dutch Kaak Group is a leading food technology company, specialized in integrated automated bakery systems, that has been a partner in Additive Industries’ AddLab from 2014. “We will use metal additive manufacturing to produce parts for our dough handling equipment and foresee an important role for 3D metal printing in our future global spare parts supply chain,” company CEO Mr. Lodewijk van der Borg said of their purchase.
The United Grinding Group, meanwhile, is one of the world’s leading providers of heavy machinery, and will enter into the MetalFAB1 Beta program through a joint venture with Swiss company Inspire. As the company’s CEO Mr. Stephan Nell reveals, they have a strategic interest in metal 3D printing. “We see metal additive manufacturing as a promising addition to our subtractive business. We have great expectations of our collaboration with Additive Industries,” he says.
Remarkably, the addition of these two new clients means that the MetalFAB1 systems are effectively sold out for now. There was just room for three clients in their Beta program, and those spots were filled in just three months since its inception. It bodes well for the future, and the CEO of Additive Industries Daan Kersten has already revealed that they will ramp up series production alongside this Beta program. “We expect the first series machines to leave our factory before the end of this year,” he said.
Posted in 3D Printer Company
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