The additive manufacturing business is booming in the greater Boston area. Just a few days after Formlabs became the latest tech unicorn (over $1 billion value), Digital Alloys, developers of the new Joule Printing metal wire deposition AM technology, closed $12.9M in Series B financing. The round was led by G20 Ventures and joined by Boeing HorizonX Ventures, Lincoln Electric, and prior investor Khosla Ventures.
Digital Alloys also announced two US patents for its Joule Printing metal additive manufacturing technology, a radically simple new process that uses wire feedstock and high deposition rates to print the hardest metal parts faster and at a lower cost than other solutions. Initial applications of the technology include the production of conformally cooled tools for the automotive and consumer products industries, and the delivery of high-quality titanium parts for the aerospace industry.
“When you look at the process required to produce practical hard metal parts using the much-hyped early generation of metal printing, what you find is a Rube Goldberg machine of complexity, touchy materials, and complex finishing steps,” Bill Wiberg, co-founder and Partner of Boston-based G20 Ventures, said. “This great team – he added – has invented and now commercialized an entirely new approach that’s both faster and cheaper to the point that – once you see it – you have to wonder why anyone would do it any other way.”
Boeing will benefit from Digital Alloys’ technology as it continues to support additive manufacturing innovations, particularly for parts made from titanium and other hard metals. “Our investment in Digital Alloys will further Boeing’s ability to produce a higher volume of metal structural aerospace parts faster than ever before,” said Brian Schettler, managing director of Boeing HorizonX Ventures. “Through emerging additive manufacturing technologies, we aim to accelerate the design and manufacture of 3D-printed parts to transform production systems and products.”
Tom Matthews, senior vice president, technology and research and development at Lincoln Electric, said, “Our investment in Digital Alloys and Joule Printing™ technology extends Lincoln Electric’s presence in metal-based additive manufacturing and helps advance development of value-added solutions in areas such as tooling and low-volume cast parts.”
“Support from Boeing and Lincoln Electric will expand our expertise, technology and services,” concluded Duncan McCallum, CEO of Digital Alloys. “We are committed to providing the products and services manufacturers need to take advantage of metal 3D printing in production. We will save customers time, money, and hassle by enabling great engineers to solve manufacturing problems in new ways. The next industrial revolution is here.”