“Far from Industry 4.0 creating a ‘connected,’ end-to-end supply chain, today many 3D printers and protocols are creating ‘walled kingdoms’ of hardware that are incompatible with certain CAE tools, and vendors are introducing machines with proprietary connectivity, standards, and protocols designed not to work with machinery from rivals,” said Paolo Guglielmini, president of Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division.
“Just as large manufacturers drove the provision of open factory automation, it’s important we vendors now break down barriers to new manufacturing technologies that offer more flexibility and efficiency. Instead, open data standards should be seen as a growth enabler.”
Hexagon’s AM partners in the ecosystem include Sciaky, Meltio, CADS Additive, AMcubator and Additive Center.
The ecosystem offers customers a spectrum of solutions as a result of working closely with material suppliers (e.g., Solvay, COVESTRO), printer and machine-tool companies (e.g., Stratasys, Markforged, Renishaw, Additive Industries, Sciaky, GEFERTEC, Meltio), software and platform providers (e.g., Authentise, CADS Additive, Elise), and service bureaus.
Hexagon said that through open collaboration, it is helping manufacturers to build confidence in performance, quality, and repeatability, while allowing customers to integrate new AM technologies with their existing solutions, tools, and workflows.
In additive manufacturing, Hexagon collaborates with research institutes and projects, including the EU MANUELA project, Lift, RMIT University, Purdue University, Materials Innovation Guild (MIG) at the University of Louisville, and others. Hexagon is also an active contributor to the development of emerging standards, including ASTM International groups.
“Through continued openness, our ecosystem benefits both sides of the exchange,” said Mathieu Pérennou, director of strategy and global business development for additive manufacturing at Hexagon. “Our partners can benefit from Hexagon’s technologies and expertise while getting the opportunity to collaborate and solve problems for our extensive global manufacturing customer base, while our customers benefit from that deeper collaboration and ability to build workflows based on truly best-of-breed solutions that are fully tailored to their individual goals. We want to continue to expand that ecosystem to industrialise AM and realise its benefits for high performance components, meeting the same quality expectations that our customers have for traditional methods.”
“Our partnership with Hexagon allows customers to accelerate the design and simulated testing of parts and material performance for printing,” said Jeff Hemenway, vice president, business segments for Stratasys.
Hexagon’s Manufacturing Intelligence division (Cobham, U.K.) provides solutions that use data from design and engineering, production and metrology to make improve manufacturing.
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