Aug 31, 2016 | By Andre

3D printing, or more traditionally additive manufacturing comes in all forms. Whether it’s via a low-cost desktop plastic 3D printer or one capable of producing titanium components with equivalent strength to forged parts manufacturing (at a fraction of the cost) there’s an evolving solution available.

Further growth and advancement in the latter of the two has recently been announced via the SUNY Polytechnic Institute and Norsk Titanium AS with the coming delivery of the MERKE IV Rapid Plasma Deposition machine (scheduled at the institute late in September).

This machine, capable of manufacturing the aforementioned titanium parts with unprecedented design-to-market quickness is a corner stone of the partnership between the two institutions that is expected to create 400 jobs and over $1 billion in investments over the next decade.

When all is said and done, 40 of the MERKE IV 3D printers will be producing titanium components around the clock for 50 to 75 percent less than traditional methods of manufacture. And even though only the first of the lot is arriving at the facility, they anticipate a steady flow in the short term.

Norsk Titanium Senior Vice President of Operations Chris Bohlmann emphasizes that “we have been working around the clock to prepare our facilities for a smooth ramp-up process as the first lot of 20 Rapid Plasma Deposition machines arrive in sequence.” But even with the arrival of its first MERKE IV, he believes that “the first revolutionary machine responsible for fundamentally changing the way airplanes are designed and built has shipped and is on its way to Plattsburgh, New York, right now.”

Of course, when you’re using additive manufacturing to produce production grade titanium parts you are naturally dealing with some heavy duty components. Instead of plastic filament, a titanium wire is fed through to a set of plasma torches (protected by a cool Arogn environment) and the whole unit weighs 11 metric takes and takes several weeks to assemble once delivery takes place.

Considering the first MERKE IV Titanium 3D printer is set to arrive late September and the manufacturing plant not scheduled to come online until some time in 2017, the job growth and return on investment may still take some time to come to fruition.

But considering all parties involved, there’s little doubt that everything will be delivered on time and the potential of the high powered additive manufacturing machines will be outputting strong, complex parts in no time. While large quantity 3D printing facilities do already exist in a number of areas within the additive manufacturing sector, it’s forward thinking like this that further demonstrates that the technology is here to stay,



Posted in 3D Printer



Maybe you also like:


Leave a comment:

Your Name:


Subscribe us to Feeds twitter facebook   

About provides the latest news about 3D printing technology and 3D printers. We are now seven years old and have around 1.5 million unique visitors per month.

News Archive