3/9/2017

GKN Moves Toward Digital Future in Serial Metal AM

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A new Industry 4.0 facility and a partnership with EOS are the company’s latest steps toward serial metal additive manufacturing for production.

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GKN Powder Metallurgy has announced further steps in its course toward Industry 4.0.

During an event at its plant in Bonn, Germany, the company shared plans to start a metal additive manufacturing digital enterprise in the second quarter of 2017. This enterprise will use best-in-class workflow and put into practice Industry 4.0 theory, the company says. Expected benefits include reduced lead times, enabling stronger customization of products, and more involved business partners.

GKN is working to drive innovations across the metal AM value chain from production of metal powder to AM design and manufacturing services. The company plans to provide a fully digitized AM process chain in serial production for automotive, industrial and consumer products. The plant in Boon will fulfill the ISO 16949, AS 9100 and ISO 13485 certification norms for automotive, aerospace and medical devices, respectively.

The company also recently announced a partnership with EOS to promote business-to-business industrial 3D printing. The two companies have agreed to a collaboration primarily aimed at the automotive market, combining GKN’s expertise in transferring innovative technology from the laboratory to series production, and EOS’s status as a provider of systems, materials and process parameters for industrial 3D printing. 

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