Jan 11, 2017 | By Tess

The Polytechnic School at Arizona State University (ASU) is now home to the largest additive manufacturing research facility in the Southwest United States. The 3D printing research center, the “Manufacturing Research and Innovation Hub,” was realized in partnership with 3D printing company Concept Laser, Honeywell Aerospace, and Phoenix Analysis & Design Technologies, Inc. (PADT, Inc.).

Even before the new additive manufacturing center was established, ASU’s Polytechnic School was the only school in the state of Arizona to offer an undergraduate program for manufacturing engineering—the program is also one of only 22 ABET accredited manufacturing engineering programs in the whole country. Now, there is little doubt that their program will become even more reputable as students and faculty now have access to a 15,000-square-foot 3D printing center.

The facility is equipped with an impressive array of equipment, including over $2 million worth of plastic, polymer, and metal 3D printing technologies. Having partnered with German 3D printer company Concept Laser (recently bought by GE), the facility houses a number of the company’s products, including its metal 3D printing M2 cusing and Mlab cusing machines.

As one can imagine, the new ASU 3D printing center will be used for a wide range of research projects, in the fields of material development, mechanical prototyping, energy systems, and more. “Partnering with these industry leaders provides us the capability to do additional research and enhance our education programs,” said Ann McKenna, Director of ASU’s Polytechnic School. “With so few of these types of centers, this makes ASU more attractive among academic partners, federal agencies and corporations to advance additive manufacturing.”

Rey Chu, Principal of Manufacturing Technologies at PADT, Inc. echoed the sentiment, saying: “This partnership is the next and obvious step in the progression of additive manufacturing in the Southwest. With Concept Laser’s outstanding technology, Honeywell’s leadership in applying additive manufacturing to practical Aerospace needs, PADT’s extensive network of customers and industry experience, and ASU’s proven ability to educate and work with industry, the effort will establish a strong foundation for the entire regional ecosystem.”

The Manufacturing Research and Innovation Hub will officially be launched on January 18, 2017. To celebrate the opening of the research facility, the ASU Polytechnic School will be hosting an open house, which will include guided tours and a display of various student projects.



Posted in 3D Printing Technology



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