OECHSLER, a global polymer technology company with HQ in Ansbach/Middle Franconia, is expanding its service portfolio in the field of additive manufacturing and enlarging its capacities for series production using HP powder-based 3D printing process and AMT for post-processing capabilities. For this purpose, OECHSLER is investing a mid-range single-digit million amount into the expansion of its infrastructure at the Ansbach-Brodswinden site. The Franconian technology company is bundling its additive manufacturing capacities at the site in Ansbach Brodswinden, including production, research and development. Thus, OECHSLER is creating the prerequisites for expanding additive manufacturing into the company’s second major business area alongside injection molding in the long term.
Series production with MJF technology
For this purpose, OECHSLER is expanding the production capacities of Additive Manufacturing in Brodswinden by an additional 800 square meters. In the future, Multi Jet Fusion (MJF) 3D printers from HP will be used on this space for series production. Furthermore, state-of-the-art quality assurance and air-conditioned measuring rooms were each created on additional 150 square meters. OECHSLER’s customers already include leading industrial companies, automotive suppliers and key players in the sporting goods industry.
Matthias Weißkopf, Senior Vice President Global Product & Technology Development commented, “We have entered new product categories and markets with additive manufacturing and have thus been able to further diversify our portfolio of offerings. The expansion of series production with printers from HP reflects our strategy of establishing OECHSLER as a manufacturer-independent development and production partner in the field of additive manufacturing. With our optimized infrastructure, we can support our customers with even more tailored solutions in development and production.”
End-to-end post-processing from AMT
In addition to the actual 3D printing of the components, OECHSLER’s multi-stage post-processing is a key success criterion for industrialized production. At this step of the additive process, the parts receive their defined mechanical, haptic and optical properties. In recent years, OECHSLER has built up comprehensive expertise in the post-processing components of additive series production. Thus, OECHSLER is one of only a few companies worldwide that is able to offer series production in 3D printing on a global scale.
To further industrialize powder-based 3D printing processes, OECHSLER has partnered with leading AM post-processing company, Additive Manufacturing Technologies (AMT) to develop and integrate a fully automated end-to-end post-processing cell into series production. The 1.5-year project also involves a seven-figure investment and is expected to be completed in 2023 with the delivery of a cell for automated end-to-end post-processing of 3D printed components. The automated cell will have the capacity of finishing parts from 10 industrial printers at once.
Mr. Joseph Crabtree, CEO and Founder of AMT: “We are proud that OECHSLER has partnered with AMT. The fully automated end-to-end post-processing cell we developed will enable OECHSLER to achieve significant efficiency gains in the series production of 3D printed components in the future and will support the company in industrializing its additive manufacturing capabilities on a global scale.”
Leading the way to AMP (additive mass production)
Additive manufacturing is one of the fastest-growing production technologies. Already today, OECHSLER takes an established position in the global market with quite a few prestigious projects realized in collaboration with innovative pioneers in their industries. The increasing demand across industries for lighter components, flexible designs and the most sophisticated functions opens up dynamic growth prospects for OECHSLER. The group sees itself as a technology-independent solution provider for its customers. Today, OECHLSER produces well over one million components and systems annually and ranks among the largest producers of additive series production with locations in Ansbach, Brodswinden and Taicang (China).
Dr. Claudius M. Kozlik, CEO of OECHSLER concluded: “Polymer-based additive series manufacturing has established itself as another innovative production technology at OECHSLER. We are already realizing veritable high-volume projects in the key industries of automotive, sporting goods, medical technology as well as manufacturing with our globally more than 150 installed 3D printers. Thanks to the expansion of our site in Ansbach-Brodswinden and the fully automated end-to-end post-processing by AMT, we will be able to offer our customers an even broader technology portfolio in the future.”