Desktop Metal, a leader in mass production additive manufacturing solutions, has received a $9 million order from a ‘major German automaker’ for binder jet additive manufacturing systems used for the mass production of powertrain components.
This is the second order from the same automaker in less than 12 months – bringing the total amount of production AM systems ordered to $16.9 million to support digitally cast powertrain components for a popular car line. Our readers may remember that the previous order for $7.9 million came in December 2021 and it was likely from BMW. Among German automakers, BMW has an invested interest in Desktop Metal, as the company became one of the major investors in the company via BMW iVentures. For BMW it would be a logical step to continue investing in Desktop Metal as the VW Group continues to expand its relationship with HP on the metal binder jetting front. At this time, Mercedes (Daimler Benz) seems intentioned to continue investing primarily in metal PBF technology.
“The Additive Manufacturing industry continues to grow for mass production applications, with the most innovative companies in the world leading the way,” said Ric Fulop, Founder, and CEO of Desktop Metal. “Our team is working with a significant number of global automotive OEMs to expand adoption of our differentiated AM technologies for end-use car components, and this most recent order further demonstrates our customer’s success changing the way they make products and supports Team DM’s vision for Additive Manufacturing 2.0.”
In addition to this order, Desktop Metal has recently entered a three-year, multimillion-dollar contract with the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) to develop, test, and manufacture a variety of 3D printed healthcare products with the company’s revolutionary new FreeFoam material.
FreeFoam is currently being printed exclusively on the ETEC (Desktop Metal’s industrial polymer brand) Xtreme 8K top-down DLP printing system, with broad commercial availability slated for 2023.
The VHA will receive an Xtreme 8K, as well as a variety of other equipment, in addition to development and design support for the project. The initial contract award, for $2 million, has the potential to grow to $7 million after successful phase-gate deliveries.
“Desktop Metal is proud to partner with the Veterans Health Administration on this visionary project to advance health care, logistics, and decentralized manufacturing with our new 3D printing technology at production volumes,” said Ric Fulop. “Our team is passionate about using additive manufacturing 2.0 technology such as our ETEC Xtreme 8K and FreeFoam material to transform the way manufacturing is done to deliver all-new benefits at scale.”
The project is part of a strategic effort by the Office of Advanced Manufacturing (OAM) within the Veterans Health Administration to guide the utilization of advanced manufacturing technologies, like 3D printing, in healthcare applications.