Parts On Demand, a 3D printing service provider specializing in industrial, medical, and orthopedic applications, and AM-Flow, the specialist in end-to-end workflow automation for the additive manufacturing industry, have entered a partnership to optimize the identification and sorting of custom series products with minimal deviations and/or unique printed codes.
Automated AM production
3D printing, or Additive Manufacturing (AM), is now widely used to produce unique and serial parts for end use. The model design and the 3D printing process is digital, but after 3D printing, various manual process steps follow, such as identification and sorting.
To produce 3D printed parts in series cost-effectively, AM-Flow and Parts On Demand have started a partnership to optimize the automatic recognition of ‘custom series’ production and sorting solutions on the premises of the Parts On Demand’s production facility in Utrecht. In this setting, the AM-Flow system will digitally connect to existing printing and finishing modules.
With a financial boost from the SME innovation stimulation Region and Top Sectors (MIT), AM-Flow and Parts On Demand are taking an important step to reduce the cost-per-part in mid to large sized serial production with Additive Manufacturing and, thus, make Additive Manufacturing more competitive compared to traditional production techniques such as injection molding.
Stefan Rink, CEO of AM-FLOW, commented: “Additive Manufacturing is a serious alternative to traditional mass production methods. To produce cost-effectively, the entire digital workflow must be designed optimally, and manual processes must be kept to a minimum. With this collaboration, we will soon be even better able to offer this end-to-end industrialization.”
Essential for scaling
With this collaboration, AM-Flow and Parts On Demand focus on the automation of the post-production process of 3D printing and thus optimize it as a competitive production technology for large ‘custom series’ production
“Making production fast, local and flexible. That’s what we at Parts on Demand do with industrial 3D printing. As volumes grow and products are more similar, our sorting process becomes more complex and takes up valuable time. The further development of a system to automatically sort and process these types of ‘custom series’ is essential; it makes for a more scalable process. In addition, our colleagues get more time for what they are really good at – improving the products and production of our customers,” said Neil van Es – CEO at Parts On Demand.