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Every year members of the Twikit team troop to FormNext in Frankfurt to check out the latest 3D printing news and developments.
FormNext is the biggest show in 3D printing. It is your one unique chance to see both the desktop 3D printing and the industrial Additive Manufacturing industry assembled together. Large service bureaus, OEMs, materials manufacturers they’re all there. If you are new to 3D printing we recommend that you go, and if you’re an industry veteran then chances are you’re already going. FormNext is our chance to catch up, meet new people and learn.
Twikit will be there at the FLAM3D booth, our partners in promoting collaborations within additive manufacturing. You will find us in hall 3.1 booth c68. More information and our calendar to schedule an appointment with us can be found here.
Like kids in front of a Christmas tree we’ve been gleefully anticipating our visit and planning the things we need to see. So what are we looking forward to at FormNext? What will the Unmissable Booths be?
The Aurora Labs printer.
AuroraLabs is an Australian company that makes a $49,000 metal 3D printer. For many this will be your first chance to see their creation. How does it stock up against the competition? Opinions are divided on either this being a hobby machine or a breakthrough. You can investigate at hall 3.1 and booth B34.
Toyota Motorsport will be using Somos photopolymers in its rally cars such as this GT86 CS-R3.
DSM Somos has been supplying photopolymers and 3D printing materials a very long time. Big leaps forward in functional materials for casting, molding and end use parts have come from them. Recently, they’ve been collaborating with Toyota Motorsport on innovative new materials for auto racing and released Somos Taurus a new higher heat deflection material. A photopolymer that can be used in cars? That is something to behold. Somos can be found at 3.0 C29.
As well as filament BASF has also announced PA 6 (polyamide 6) powder for laser sintering.
German chemicals company BASF entered 3D printing by setting up teams of researchers and then buying a filament producer. BASF now competes with hundreds of filament companies worldwide. Meanwhile the company has an extensive portfolio of polymers including elastomers and ecofriendly ones. What does BASF’s market entry mean for 3D printing? What will they develop given their immense resources? We’ll aim to find out at 3.1. F20.
Sculpteo’s FabPilot lets you “nest” your 3D printing builds so you can optimize and plan them.
French 3D printing service Sculpteo started by catering to consumer’s 3D printing needs. It gradually gravitated to 3D printing products for companies as well. The company has always had top notch software and user experience. This has made fans of us at Twikit. Recently Sculpteo surprised everyone by introducing FabPilot. This is a cloud based manufacturing software solution that does everything from project management to print preparation and managing your 3D printing operation. This was exciting to us in our field and we’re going to go to 3.0 F89 to find out more.
Shapeways 3D printed parts made on an HP Multijet Fusion system.
Another 3D printing service at the show is Shapeways. The company has been leading the 3D printing for consumer field since initiating it years ago. They’re now offering HP 3D printed parts to consumers and businesses. The company also has partnered with computer game giant Valve. Valve is huge and the partnership will let people make money selling objects found in Valve games. In essence Shapeways has obtained a license to Valve’s content to let people print it. This is a completely new way of looking 3D printing and licensing and we’d love to learn more about it at 3.0 H73.
Will we get to see the color up close on the HP machine?
As mentioned HP is a huge influence on 3D printing. The giant 2D printer company made a bold move when it entered the market. Everyone is still excited and curious about their Multi Jet Fusion technology and HP’s future plans. There’s been talk of metal 3D printing and full color as well as new machines. More than enough reasons to head to 3.1 E40.
“We come in peace” says this GE Additive employee.
GE Additive is also a big company making waves in our industry. By buying two metal 3D printing companies it at one fell swoop became one of the largest metal 3D printing firms. GE aims to use metal 3D printing in its jet engines and industrialize the process for numerous other applications using thousands of machines by its Arcam and Concept Laser subsidiaries. GE’s also been teasing everyone with unveiling “something large at FormNext” at 3.0 E30.
The Figure 4 Production system.
3D Systems has focused squarely on production and manufacturing systems. We’ll be at 3.1 F10 to look at how their new Figure 4 and DMP 8500 metal printers take 3D printing from prototyping to actual end use parts. Manufacturing is the next frontier in 3D printing. We’ll see what it means to take a prototyping technology and move it into production.
Nope, not a prototype but an actual end use part used by Siemens reducing their stock and costs.
Another company squarely looking at manufacturing is Stratasys. The inventors of FDM will showcase end use parts that have been made for Siemens and other companies. Hopefully we may get to see a Stratasys Continuous Build modular production system as well. The company will be sure to have some of its current production systems such as the huge Fortus systems on display as well as interesting 3D printed end use parts at 3.1 F40.
A teaser photo of the P500 by EOS.
For EOS, FormNext is pretty much a home game and the company will be sure to treat it as such at 3.1 G50. EOS will be all about the world premiere of the EOS P 500 3D printer. The company already has selective laser sintering systems used widely in manufacturing but is now set to unveil a true manufacturing system, the P500. What kind of automation and quality control will this have? What will its yield be? We can’t wait to finally see it.
When Xjet launched it was immediately an incredibly talked about start up that may revolutionize metal and ceramics 3D printing. The company then went quiet leading to a lot of mystery surrounding it. What has this mysterious team of very experienced 3D printing people been up to? Will we get to see their Carmel AM system and learn more about their nanoparticle jetting technology?