Oct.19, 2012

Shapeways, the 3D printing company based in New York, announced their plans to bring manufacturing back to New York City with their "Factory of the Future," a new 3D Printing facility being built in Long Island City.

Currently under construction, the "Factory of the Future" is en route to becoming the biggest consumer-facing 3D Printing manufacturing facility in the world, with the potential to 3D Print three to five million unique products a year on high-end, industrial size printers. At 25,000 square feet, the expansive facility will house between 30 to 50 industrial-size 3D Printers and create as many as 50 manufacturing jobs in a year's time.

"We're doing something that's never been done before. We are manufacturing, post-processing, cleaning, sorting, and shipping thousands of unique items on a daily basis right here in New York," said Peter Weijmarshausen, Shapeways CEO and Co-Founder. "Why make things overseas and then ship them here? Let's make things local again."

The Factory is set to be fully operational in January 2013, and will be open for tours. Build out plans include the addition of state of the art 3D Printers, including EOS Selective Laser Sintering (SLS), Projet UV Cured Acrylic Resin Printing, and ZCorp full color printing, some of which can make up to 1,000 objects in a day. There will also be a Shapeways Lab dedicated to research and development of new materials, post-production techniques, and community experimentation.

Weijmarshausen added, "It was only a few years ago that we started 3D Printing in the Netherlands with one machine. Now, we have over 7,000 Shapeways Shop Owners running their business on our platform, nearly 200,000 users making unique products come to life, and a team of 60 employees making this vision a reality. We're excited to be able to open our doors to the public here in New York and show people the infinite possibilities 3D Printing enables." Shapeways has both offices in Seattle and the Netherlands, and has been headquartered in New York since 2010.

Mayor Bloomberg was yesterday on site for the ribbon cutting ceremony and what they used were even 3D printed scissors. The scissors had been printed in-house two days prior, using nylon plastic material.

Shapeways, Mayor Bloomberg and the Economic Development Corporation also announced the launch of "New York's Next Top Makers competition, helping entrepreneurs bring their innovative products to market.

People could upload pictures of things they'd like to design and five projects will be selected by product design experts, with a sixth chosen by public vote. Competitors will get studio space at NYDesigns, an economic development program at LaGuardia Community College, as well as business mentorship from Shapeways, Adafruit Industries, and Honeybee Robotics.

"This contest will make sure New York City stays on the cutting edge of 3D Printing, an exciting new industry with virtually unlimited potential, and which could completely revolutionize manufacturing," said Mayor Bloomberg.

The NY start-up will also sponsor $300 worth of 3D Printing for each of the 6 winning teams. Shapeways Designer Evangelists will also support the winners with ongoing mentorship.

To read more about the competition, go here. You can also watch the video here.

Here is a fun video of how Nervous System, a design studio that works at the intersection of science, art, and technology makes use of Shapeways's services.

Image credit: Edward Reed / nyc.gov


Source: NYC Gov

Posted in 3D Printing Services



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