As a member of the 3MF Consortium, an investor in 3D printing startups, and a regular user of the technology, Siemens is a firm advocate of 3D printing. Today, the company announced that it was making further moves into the industry with a facility devoted entirely to metal 3D printing. The €21.4 million facility, located in Siemen’s industrial plant in Finspång, Sweden, is both the first of its kind for Siemens and for Sweden.
The site is currently staffed with 20 employees, such as operators and engineers, who are mass producing metal 3D printed components for Siemens’ own industrial gas turbines, both for prototyping, as well as for end-part production and repair. In a Swedish press release, Thorbjorn Fors, global business director for Distributed Generation at Siemens, said of the facility, “With this investment, we can develop new and improved components and repairs, for example burner tips to serve our industrial gas turbine SGT-800, significantly faster. Using this innovative approach, we will shorten repair times from months to weeks. It is an important step in our ability to respond to the needs of our customers.”
Hans Holmström, CEO of Siemens Industrial Turbomachinery, added, “Siemens is at the forefront in Sweden and the world of additive manufacturing in the development and production of advanced components in the metal to the power industry. This is a step in a long-term investment in this area, where we have not yet seen all the possibilities. Through this investment, we are building up the skills and experience that can lead to new ideas and developments in the field.”
With metal 3D printing officially entering the mainstream manufacturing supply chain, it’s no surprise that Siemens has jumped in with their own facility. And, as GE already implements metal 3D printing for its own Oil & Gas division, Siemens will have to ensure that it keeps pace with the competition.