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NAMIC and Singapore’s Port Authority sign public-private collaboration to boost maritime and energy AM

The National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Cluster (NAMIC) is organizing the Maritime and Energy Sector AM Summit on 17 April at Sofitel Singapore City Centre. Our editor, 3DBPM, is supporting this event, through all its webistes (3Dprintingmedia.network, 3Dprintingbusiness.directory and replicatore.it). 3DBPM’s fopunder Davide Sher will also be moderating and speaking at the event, detailing the findings from 3DBPM’s partner SmarTech Publishing’s latest report on AM in the oil and gas segment. The event – the first of its kind focusing on AM in the martime and energy industry, is drwaing over 400 participants with an impressive array of speakers. Singapore, through local academic and governmental entities such as NAMIC and A*STAR is rapidly becoming one of the world’s biggest hubs for AM research and innovation.

Guest-of-Honour is Assistant Chief Executive, Maritime and Port Authority (MPA) of Singapore Capt. M Segar. In line with the industry vertical and application focus, this Summit is focusing on how will 3D printing change the future of maritime and energy sectors, as well as impact global supply chain.

MPA and NAMIC will also be signing an MOU to partner on the launch of a Joint Industry Programme (JIP) to develop maritime applications related to digitalization and advanced manufacturing. The objective of this partnership will be to develop AM applications and services for the maritime industry and strengthen Singapore’s position as a premier hub port with efficient one-stop port services and grow Singapore as a hub for digital manufacturing, testing, and certification of advanced manufacturing technologies.  Through the JIP, it is envisioned that market feasibility studies will be conducted, and different facets of advanced manufacturing, ranging from secure data exchange, and digitalization of supply chain, to print-on-demand fabrication, will be developed and deployed through industry partners. Some companies who have expressed interest in participation include Wilhelmsen Ships Service, the world’s largest maritime products and services supplier, as well as major maritime classification societies.

“3D printing essentially enables our customers to access a microfactory, if and when they need it, in their next port of call.”

Nakul Malhotra, Vice President of Technical Solutions & Marketing, Marine Products, Wilhelmsen Ships Service

Kjell Andre Engen, Executive Vice President of Marine Products, Wilhelmsen Ships Service, added that “by adopting a well-known technology and putting it to work within our global network to produce marine-specific, on-demand parts, Wilhelmsen is actively shaping the maritime industry.”

In developing skilled professionals in additive manufacturing, NAMIC and SSG, will collaborate with IHLs such as Nanyang Polytechnic (NYP) and Singapore Polytechnic (SP), as well as training providers like TUM Asia and SIMTech to develop customised courses under SkillsFuture Series and programmes under the SkillsFuture ELP. For a start, SP, Lloyd’s Register, NAMIC and SSG will develop and deliver a series of master classes in additive manufacturing for the manufacturing sectors, including Maritime and Energy. The 3-day master classes will provide companies with the practical industry knowledge they need to adopt Additive Manufacturing, and cover areas including Processes, Codes, Standards, Quality Control and Assurance as well as Certification.

NAMIC will also develop an industry-led additive manufacturing certification framework, supported by SSG, to professionalise and recognise the industry workforce. Certificates will be awarded for selected additive manufacturing courses. To kick-start this effort, NYP, NAMIC and SSG will be rolling the first SkillsFuture ELP in Additive Manufacturing (a Specialist Diploma in Additive Manufacturing), targeted at fresh polytechnic graduates.

“As a vibrant ecosystem consisting of the port, shipping, maritime services and offshore and marine engineering cluster, Singapore is well-poised to leverage our R&D capabilities and serve as a test-bed for 3D printing technology for application in the maritime sector. Developing this technological capability could create positive spinoffs, translating into efficiency and productivity gains for the wider shipping community. To support this effort, MPA is pleased to partner with NAMIC to encourage further public-private sector collaborations in exploring 3D printing for the sector.”

Mr. Kenneth Lim, Director (Research, Technology and Industry Development), MPA.

These efforts are in line with the Industry Transformation Maps to prepare the workforce with existing and emerging skills required for the industry and will reference the Skills Frameworks for Precision Engineering, Aerospace and Marine and Offshore, which aim to build deep skills for a lean workforce, enhance business competitiveness, and support employment and employability.

One of NAMIC’s core missions is to increase Singapore industries’ adoption of additive manufacturing technologies, to enhance competitiveness in the rapidly evolving landscape of digital transformation. Through the public funded universities, polytechnics and research institutes, NAMIC is working with several companies across various industry verticals, with a project pipeline exceeding $25 million dollars. Startups like 3DMetalforge, Nanosun, Osteopore, Flare Dynamics, as well as large industry players like Sembcorp Marine, Underwriters Laboratories and DNV-GL, are some of the Singapore-based companies collaborating with NAMIC.

With the irrevocable shift towards renewable energy and onset of industry 4.0, every industry would need to take concrete steps to adopt technologies that will improve productivity and transform their businesses. Through partnerships and facilitation by NAMIC, Singapore now has a fast-growing 3D printing industrial ecosystem, especially in strategic sectors such as offshore marine, aerospace and biomedical. A number of AM startup companies have also emerged in the last two years, such as Structo, Osteopore International, Nanosun, 3D Metalforge, Gilmour Space, Siege Advanced Manufacturing, SpareParts3D, Denova Sciences, Kosmode Health and many more. Multinational corporations like Emerson, Flowserve, UPS-Fast Radius, Rolls-Royce, Underwriter Laboratories, DNV-GL and Yamazaki Mazak have chosen Singapore as a regional hub for their 3D printing business and innovation hubs. Major AM OEM manufacturers have either chosen Singapore or are in the process of establishing AM innovation centers to augment their regional headquarter status.

 

3D Metalforge is a Singapore metal AM technology company operating one of Asia’s leading AM service bureaus dedicated to (re)designing, engineering and printing polymer and metal end-use parts for industrial applications. NAMIC has partnered with the company to develop and commercialize large format metal printing technologies together with SUTD and A*STAR’s SIMTECH. This technology capability enhancement will enable 3D Metalforge to support the marine, offshore, and precision engineering sectors. At its end state, it offers an advanced suite of 3D printing equipment, including selective laser melting (SLM), hybrid wire-arc additive manufacturing (H-WAAM), as well as an automated laser arc additive manufacturing (LAAM) printer. Both H-WAAM and LAAM can produce high-quality metal greater than 1.5 meters in cubic size, at a speed of approximately 0.5kg per hour – for a number of metals.

Another local startup company, SpareParts3D, uses plastic additive manufacturing specifically to produce spare parts for home appliances. It works with household names such as Electrolux to improving their after-sales service, by increasing the availability of their spare parts, produced locally and on-demand – all thanks to the use of additive manufacturing. This is valuable to any businesses, especially in reducing unnecessary inventory cost.

Dr. Ho Chaw Sing, Managing Director of NAMIC, says, “As a premier global hub port and maritime center, Singapore is well-placed towards enhancing its world-leading position in the digital age. Our partnership with MPA, SSG, and various industry players will help accelerate MPA’s future Port of Singapore, marrying a highly-skilled workforce and secure digital platforms for maritime services and supply chain together with advanced manufacturing technologies such as 3D printing.”

 

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