11/15/2016 | 1 MINUTE READ

Oerlikon to Build Production Facility for Additive Manufacturing Materials

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The new plant will be located in Plymouth Township, Michigan.

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Oerlikon has announced that it will be building a manufacturing facility in Plymouth Township, Michigan, dedicated to producing materials for additive manufacturing and high-end surface coatings. The company expects the demand for advanced materials for additive manufacturing to increase rapidly in the coming years, making it one of the key growth areas in metal-based additive manufacturing. Among the materials to be produced at the new facility will be advanced titanium alloys for additive manufacturing.

The site will be fully equipped with next-generation VIGA technology, which combines vacuum induction melting with inert gas atomization systems. VIGA is one of the most versatile methods for processing a variety of metals and alloys into powders, and offers improved process efficiency and yields, Oerlikon says. In addition, the facility will house a state-of-the-art research & development (R&D) lab for further developments of titanium and other alloys (e.g. nickel, copper, iron and cobalt), for joint R&D projects with customers, and have the ability to produce customized powders in small batches.

The new facility complements Oerlikon Metco’s existing site in Troy, Michigan, where advanced materials for surface solutions are produced. In the first phase, Oerlikon plans to invest approximately $50 million in the facility. The Group has the option of further expanding and developing the site to meet customers’ demands. The Group expects to initially employ approximately 70 staff in Plymouth Township. The facility is expected to be operational by the end of 2017.

Dr. Roland Fischer, CEO of the Oerlikon Group, said: “We intend to take a leading position in the industrialization of additive manufacturing and are convinced that the facility in Plymouth Township will ignite this ambition. This investment marks an important step in our plans to grow our strong presence in North America, and is a key milestone for us to become a leading service provider for the fast-expanding additive manufacturing market. I would like to thank the Michigan Business Development Program for their support, and we look forward to becoming part of this community.” m

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