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Martin Back
Martin Back
In his role as Managing Director, Martin Back oversees the day-to-day operations of Bigrep, creates strategies and policies, and nurtures employee alignment with company goals. With a wealth of industry experience at senior management level and extensive capabilities in leading large technology … More »

MCADCafe 2020 industry predictions – Bigrep

January 30th, 2020 by Martin Back

FFF technology & filaments: This will be the year of large-format FFF technology. As leading industrial manufacturers continue to realize the speed, efficiency, flexibility, and precision of large-format AM and its unique compatibility with high performance, industrial-grade filaments for applications in automotive, aerospace, rail and other industries both in and outside of the transportation sector. The growing range of filaments designed for specific applications will offer manufacturers increasingly personalized production by taking advantage of large-format additives flexibility in a serial production setting. Additionally, as environmentally friendly processes like filament recycling to introduce closed-loop supply chains – an opportunity that isn’t readily accessible in metal AM applications – become increasingly necessary companies will move to adopt large-format FFF AM to replace other wasteful processes.

Industry 4.0 – Connectivity & Big Data: The IoT capabilities of additive manufacturing systems will dramatically improve this year, creating new opportunities for data collection and productivity monitoring that enable manufacturers to easily optimize their processes where needed for even more precise and efficient manufacturing workflows. We’re proud to say that BigRep is setting the industry standard in IOT for manufacturing technologies by integrating these advanced data collection systems into the BigRep PRO with a Bosch Rexroth CNC Control system, providing user feedback and essential manufacturing and maintenance information.

Companies will increasingly incorporate sensors into their products and systems, as we demonstrated with our recent electric pod car prototype, the LOCI, with our BigRep Part DNA™ technology. Integrating NFC chips into 3D printed parts to be easily scanned with a mobile device to identify and replace parts. In the future it can also be integrated with sensors to monitor part status and provide maintenance or replacement information with a simple scan. Using these sensors to create “digital twins” is changing the way manufacturers monitor their products and assets.

Digital solutions empowering production: Today more than ever, industrial clients want to quickly provide personalized products on a mass scale. To do that, they need manufacturing workflows tailor-made for mass-produced, custom products. Because of this, manufacturing processes will increasingly require more flexibility within serial production, a need that large-format 3D printers are uniquely poised to meet.

This trend will require new, modernized strategies from 3D printer manufacturers to succeed. New strategies must take into considerations the closer relationship between integrated applications, optimized processes and specialized materials. At BigRep, we are already ahead of this change, providing 360-degree solutions that empower production.

On site, on demand: 3D printing will further disrupt supply chains. The integration of AM into traditional manufacturing systems and for end-use parts will increase, improving innovation cycles with shorter lead times at every phase and lower costs for manufacturing as efficient supply chain innovations like closed-loop material processes as plastic filaments are increasingly recycled in-house increase. On-demand local production will further decrease environmental and logistical challenges as the need for warehouses and shipping falls.

Category: Industry Predictions

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