South African Research Centre Acquires Optomec LENS Additive Manufacturing System

Optomec announced that the South African Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) has acquired an Optomec Laser Engineering Net Shaping system, which is used for metal 3D printing applications. Located at the CSIR headquarters, the LENS machine is expected to greatly enhance the South African tool and die industry, which, prior to this acquisition, has been depending on foreign suppliers. LENS usage will focus primarily on developing fabrication processes for expensive metal components used in manufacturing applications for the aerospace and automotive industries.

CSIR will cater specialised LENS services to industry sectors both local and international. According to the company: “Our market research brought us to the conclusion that Optomec is the market leader offering the most mature technology and the best technical and maintenance support for our application. The proven capability to process titanium to aerospace industry standards was also a strong recommendation. The professionalism and openness of the sales staff inspired confidence in Optomec as a company and partner.” stated Herman Burger from CSIR. “Due to the nature of the South Africa industry, we have a very strong focus on refurbishment of components. In addition, we will perform R&D on additive manufacturing with titanium alloys primarily for the aerospace, but also for the biomedical industries.”

The benefits of the Optomec LENS 3D printing system include cost efficient fabrication and the ability to enhance and repair high-performance metal components such as titanium, stainless steel and Inconel®. LENS systems are used for applications ranging from materials research to functional prototyping.

CSIR is Africa’s leading scientific and technology research, development and implementation organization. It conducts R&D for socio-economic growth and is committed to supporting innovation in South Africa in order to increase competitiveness in the global economy for both private and public sectors.

Optomec is the world-leading provider of additive manufacturing systems for high-performance applications in the photovoltaic, electronics, biomedical, and aerospace & defense markets. These systems utilise Optomec’s proprietary Aerosol Jet and LENS powder-metal fabrication technology. The company has a global customer base of industry-leading manufacturers.

For more information about LENS visit