AM for sustainable structural transformation
Review: 18th Rapid.Tech 3D conference and trade fair, 17 – 19 May 2022, Erfurt, Germany
The inspiring programme for the last day of the event opened with a trailblazing keynote speech by Bernhard Randerath, highlighting a practical avenue for sustainable structural transformation. The managing director of the German Emirati Institute (GEI) invited his audience to imagine the CO2-free factory of the future, where AM played a key role in the production of interiors for all kinds of vehicles. The concept is based on the fact that interiors – whether for cars, trains, planes or boats – all have similar designs and similarly constructed components. The factory is being developed jointly by Germany and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and forms part of wide-ranging technological collaboration between the two states. The factory will be built in a structural transformation zone and is scheduled to start operations in 2025.
Speed and simplification were also the themes of the second keynote. Alexander Oster of Autodesk presented Machine Control Framework, open-source software that enables different hardware components to be combined quickly and easily in a finished SLM system, instantly producing product-quality metal and plastic components. The framework, which was the result of collaboration between Autodesk and Scanlab, allows every development organization to integrate finished components rapidly into complete additive manufacturing systems – at a fraction of the usual cost.
As well as learning about the almost unlimited potential of additive manufacturing from the keynotes and specialist conference forums, visitors were able to experience them first-hand at the exhibitor stands.
Exhibitors almost unanimously reported that they had welcomed large numbers of sector experts – often with highly specific questions – representing all types of operation, from large corporations to very small businesses.
The next Rapid.Tech 3D will be held in Erfurt, 9 – 11 May 2023.
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