Mar 21, 2017 | By Tess

Divergent 3D, the company behind the amazing Blade 3D printed supercar, has signed a Strategic Development Partnership with German metal 3D printer manufacturer SLM Solutions Group. The partnership will see SLM Solutions working with Divergent to develop hardware and software for the Divergent Manufacturing Platform, a process that could revolutionize the auto manufacturing industry with more cost-effective, high-volume production.

As one of the world’s top manufacturers of metal 3D printing equipment, SLM Solutions seems like the ideal partner for Divergent 3D, whose innovative 3D printed chassis system has the potential to disrupt car manufacturing in a big way. The Divergent Manufacturing Platform, a software-hardware platform, employs lightweight 3D printed metal components to “transform the economics and environmental impact” of designing and producing vehicles, as well as other complex structures.

“SLM Solutions Group is a powerful, long-term strategic partner for Divergent 3D, working with us to provide 3D metal printing hardware and software specific to the Divergent Manufacturing Platform,” said Kevin Czinger, Founder and CEO of Divergent 3D. “We believe that this will transform the way vehicle structures are designed, engineered, manufactured and assembled.”

SLM Solutions Group will use the partnership to establish a hardware and software solution that will allow Divergent 3D to significantly scale up its innovative manufacturing platform. Together, the companies are hoping to increase and accelerate the commercial development and applications of their respective technologies and revenues.

What sets Divergent 3D’s Divergent Manufacturing Platform apart from other current applications of 3D printing within the auto industry? Well, while other car manufacturers are increasingly using 3D printing in their production processes, they are largely using them to make either prototypes or custom, low-volume components. Divergent 3D, however, has introduced a technology through which the entire design and manufacturing process of the vehicle is transformed.

More specifically, the platform allows for the production of lighter, more cost-efficient, and more environmentally friendly cars through the incorporation of 3D printed joints (called NODEs), which  connect strong but lightweight carbon fiber structural materials.

Hans-Joachim Ihde, Chairman of the Supervisory Board and Founder of SLM Solutions Group, said: “We are very impressed by the rapid development and implementation of Divergent 3D’s technology in the automotive sector. By working together with Divergent, we can help to provide manufacturers with the tools to build more profitable, innovative and environmentally sustainable vehicles while dramatically reducing manufacturing capital cost and providing almost unlimited design flexibility.”

Earlier this year, Divergent 3D raised about $23 million in funding to advance and commercialize its 3D printed chassis technology, with Altran being a notable investor. With its strategic partnerships growing, there seems to be little doubt that Divergent 3D’s innovative platform could very well be the future of auto manufacturing.



Posted in 3D Printing Application



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