We’re just days away from the launch of the very first formnext powered by TCT event in Germany and news of new machines and technologies is coming in thick and fast. To get you up to speed with just some of the announcements that have been made so far, here’s a roundup of some of the big innovations to look out for in Frankfurt next week.
Additive Industries (Stand: E28)
Last November in the same location Additive Industries teased us with a giant wooden shipping box with the words “coming soon” plastered across the side. This year the Dutch manufacturer is set to unveil its first industrial 3D metal printing system, the MetalFAB1, at formnext.
The Additive Industries team has been working on the development and realisation of an integrated metal additive manufacturing solution for industrial series production, since 2012. The modular MetalFAB1 system uses metal powder bed fusion technology and has a broad range of new features like fully automated build plate and product handling, multiple full field lasers, continuous in-process calibration and integrated heat treatment. Additive Industries promises an unrivalled productivity, reproducibility and flexibility.
Ricoh (Stand: D20)
Ricoh 3D printer
Another debut at formnext will be Ricoh, the company has announced the launch of its first 3D printer under the Ricoh brand, an industrial selective laser-sintering (SLS) machine, the RICOH AM S5500P.
The RICOH AM S5500P is capable of producing high-definition, durable parts. The machine features a large build area of 550 mm (W) × 550 mm (D) × 500 mm (H) and is capable of producing different kinds of parts at the same time, as well as mould large parts all at once. In addition to the polymer powder materials commonly used with SLS technology, such as PA11 and PA12, universally applicable materials PA6 and Polypropylene can also be used.
TRUMPF (Stand: F20)
Laser Metal Fusion by Trumpf
Laser Metal Fusion by Trumpf
Trumpf, the German laser manufacturer that employs in excess of 10,000, is set to launch new metal additive manufacturing machinery at formnext. The company will showcase machines that use powdered metal laser metal fusion (LMF) technology -popular with manufacturers such as Concept Laser, EOS, 3D Systems and SLM Solutions - as well as a machine that uses laser metal deposition (LMD) technology used by the likes of DM3D.
“The introduction of these new 3D printers is an essential first step, since additive manufacturing will not only supplement production techniques in the future, but will also exert a formative influence on them,” explains Dr.-Ing. E.h. Peter Leibinger, Head of TRUMPF Laser- und Systemtechnik GmbH. “We will be offering rugged and highly productive machinery with which small and medium-sized parts incorporating complex structures can be manufactured,” Leibinger adds.
Stratasys (Stand: G40)
Stratasys expands position in German Speaking Countries.
If you’re visiting the event it is unlikely that you’ll miss the Stratasys booth given its colossal scope. It is the biggest exhibition space the company has ever taken and the first time that they have brought all arms of the company together in one place. MakerBot, Solidscape, Stratasys Direct Manufacturing and Stratasys Strategic Consulting will be together as one in what some are calling “The Stratasys Village”. The company has gone through a rebranding exercise of late and a new logo means that the formnext stand will be something totally new. For a more in depth look at the Stratasys booth turn to pages 8 and 9.
Realizer (Stand: E31)
You might spot an advert towards the front of this issue teasing the release of a new Realizer machine. The German metals machine manufacturers are set to bring the modernized and completely revised s versions of the SLM 50, and the SLM 250 / SLM 300 to formnext. Realizer’s engineers have been working hard in 2015 in order to bring the latest technology to additive manufacturing.
Renishaw (Stand: E60)
This time last year the British engineering company announced the EVO Project, a metal additive manufacturing machine designed specifically for production manufacturing. It is the first additive manufacturing system designed and engineered in-house and reflects 40 years of experience in supplying high-quality equipment to demanding global manufacturing businesses. At formnext Renishaw will unveil the fruits of a year-long labour.
Arburg (Stand: E30)
One of the world’s largest manufacturers of plastics processing machines heads to formnext armed with two Freeformers – the company’s flagship additive manufacturing machine. Juliane Hehl, Managing Partner at Arburg said: “Frankfurt is easy to reach from any part of the world. Here, our customers will meet us at the usual place and time, and we will present to them the potential of our innovative Freeformer.”
AUDI Werkzeugbau (Tooling) (Stand: C10)
Audi will be presenting its unique expertise at formnext in a promising exhibit entitled “Audi Werkzeugbau”, which will offer exclusive insights into product development in the automotive industry. This showcase will take visitors on a journey through the history of toolmaking at Audi up to current production techniques, including the latest trends in product development and a look at Industry 4.0. It will also demonstrate how generative technology is becoming part of toolmaking at the company and the opportunities such advances afford.
Prodways (Stand: E50)
Following its recent announcement of a collaboration with Chinese additive manufacturing company, Hunan Farsoon Tech Ltd., Prodways is set to launch its new ProMaker P series range of industrial laser sintering systems at formnext. A joint R&D effort from teams at Prodways, Norge and Farsoon, the "Prodways powered by Farsoon" range stands out from current standards for its high thermal stability offering optimised mechanical properties, combined with a fully digital, ultra-fast and highly accurate laser scanning system. The five machines will be priced between 200.000€ and 450.000€ and available in two families, the ProMaker P2000 series and ProMaker 4000 series.
Concept Laser (Stand: E40)
German additive manufacturing leader, Concept Laser, plans to exhibit a comprehensive machine concept under the title of “AM Factory of Tomorrow” along with the entire process chain of additive production. Concept Laser says the concept is about “intelligent networking of machines, a high level of automation and incorporating system technology into the production environment”. The AM Factory of Tomorrow is based around a decentralised approach to manufacturing with regional centres and service providers positioned across the globe. It also focuses on increasing productivity and exploiting the digital potential for industrial process and system design through three key areas; digital networking of systems, integration into the production environment and automation of processes.