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Published: March 15, 2017

Inside HP's  3D Open Materials and Applications Lab in Corvallis, Ore.Inside HP's 3D Open Materials and Applications Lab in Corvallis, Ore.

One of the most widely used technologies in the world – the thermal Inkjet – came to be some 30 years ago thanks to engineers at HP’s 145-acre Corvallis, Ore., site. The technology, which uses heat to force tiny drops of ink through a specialized nozzle and onto paper, today is the dominant type of printing in people’s homes and offices.

It’s no surprise, then, that Corvallis is also home to some of the most advanced 3D printing technologies being developed by HP with the end goal of fostering a partner-driven, open materials marketplace to accelerate the creation of production-ready 3D printed parts.MJFPTB (6).jpg

 At an event for technology press and analysts this week, HP gave behind-the-scenes tours of its new 3D Open Materials and Applications Lab, a 3,500 square-foot space where 3D materials partners can jumpstart product development, test new materials and get real-time feedback from engineers.

The focus on cross-industry collaboration at the new lab is meant to spur innovation and speed time-to-market (and crack into the $12 trillion manufacturing industry) with new 3D printing materials and applications that are reliable, safe and affordable. 

“We are convening the world’s leading materials companies and empowering them to disrupt and innovate,” said Tim Weber, Global Head of 3D Materials and Advanced Applications and general manager of the Corvallis site. “It will be exciting to watch as these companies test the limits of the HP Open Platform. The ability to create new materials more quickly, and to easily iterate and improve those materials, will lower costs and accelerate the digital reinvention of manufacturing.”

A grand opening for a grand idea

To commemorate the new lab, HP Corvallis hosted a two-day event, which kicked off with a dinner and roundtable and includes topical discussion panels from 3D printing experts and partners.  

The lab opening comes just shy of a year after HP announced its Multi Jet Fusion technology and its first commercial 3D printers. Geared toward replacing injection-molding machinery on factory floors, the solution can produce higher quality physical parts up to 10 times faster and at half the cost of earlier systems.

In Corvallis, the new lab builds upon a long legacy of innovation. It’s already home to a high-tech research and industrial grade production facility where material scientists design, test and build print heads, silicon wafers and the thermal Inkjet printer heads.A peek inside the HP Multi Jet Fusion 4200 3D printerA peek inside the HP Multi Jet Fusion 4200 3D printer

The new 3D materials and applications lab will be a proving ground for HP’s 3D print technology and its initial partners, who can use the lab space to test new, powdered raw materials to use in HP’s 3D printers.

“In order for 3D printing to go mainstream, you need the materials piece to take off with the technology or the ecosystem won’t flourish,” HP’s Weber said. “We want materials companies to work with their customers and drive innovation on our platform.”

Currently, HP is working with four of the world’s leading materials companies to co-develop new materials and refine the materials certification process, but will continue to add partners to the program. Arkema, BASF, Evonik and Lehman & Voss announced their commitment to the HP Open Platform and are working on certified materials for the HP Jet Fusion 3D 4200 and HP Jet Fusion 3D 3200 printers.

HP Multi Jet Fusion technology sets the stage for future platforms that could transform color, texture, and mechanical properties at the “voxel” level—a 3D unit of measure that’s just about 50 microns, the width of a human hair. Manipulating printing materials could create 3D printed objects with conductivity, flexibility, embedded data, and translucency—and that's just the beginning. The possible combinations and potential applications are limitless.

 

Partnerships key to market growth 

HP Jet Fusion 3D 4200 (3).jpgFaced with such a complex undertaking, HP is looking to partners for help. When companies develop new products, they typically engage with materials suppliers for the testing and prototyping of specialty applications. There are thousands of them, many of which are proprietary formulations.

According to Weber, it’s a win-win: partners can solve customer problems using 3D print technology while HP expands its materials library. Partners send engineers to work in the lab on HP’s tools and printers, who will return with what they learned to iterate on the materials in rapid development cycles.

“There’s no way that HP itself can develop and certify the some 30,000 materials made by all the materials companies in the world,” said Weber. “Working together in a hands-on, agile development environment enables us to test and certify materials that are compatible with our Multi Jet Fusion technology.”

 

From prototype to factory floor

HP aspires ultimately to open a materials platform so customers can have an experience similar to an app store, where they have variety of certified materials to choose from. In October, Evonik became the first partner to announce a certified material.
dagobah_tcm245_2266154_tcm245_2279903_tcm245-2266154.jpgBut materials are just one piece of the 3D printing puzzle, according to Weber, it’s about changing more than 70 years of entrenched business practices and behavior in the manufacturing industry. Driving materials innovation enables HP to demonstrate that 3D printing can replace this traditional manufacturing model by lowering costs and meeting or exceeding existing standards for quality and reliability.

“We must rethink the entire lifecycle of a manufactured part, from design to delivery, he said.

For more information about the 3D Open Materials and Applications Lab, see the press kit. Learn more about HP’s Multi Jet Fusion 3D printers here.

    3D Printing
Published: May 22, 2017

 

HP Jet Fusion 4200HP Jet Fusion 4200

One year and three days after announcing the world’s first production-ready 3D printing solutions, HP’s Multi Jet Fusion technology and its implementation was crowned “Innovation of the Year” at the inaugural 3D Printing Industry Awards ceremony in London.

Nominated and voted on by the industry – in a program that included more than 800 companies nominated and 200,000 votes received – the awards recognize the individuals, companies and technologies that are shaping the digital reinvention of manufacturing. 

Ramon Pastor, head of HP Multi Jet Fusion technology and Emilio Juarez, head of 3D Printing European sales.Ramon Pastor, head of HP Multi Jet Fusion technology and Emilio Juarez, head of 3D Printing European sales.“The ‘Innovation of the Year’ recognition is a direct result of a trifecta of attributes that differentiates HP and reinforces our position as a catalyst in 3D printing: disruptive technology, the HP Open Platform for materials, and an extensive heritage of printing leadership,” said Ramon Pastor, vice president and general manager, HP Multi Jet Fusion. “We have seen more progress in 3D printing in the past year than in the previous 20 years combined and our team at HP is leading that innovation.”

The award builds on momentum the HP 3D printing business has established over the last 12 months, including:

  • Customers are adopting HP Multi Jet Fusion products. HP began shipping the HP Jet Fusion 3D 4200 last quarter and are quickly ramping the delivery of HP Jet Fusion 3D solutions to meet rising customer demand. HP also unveiled its new HP Partner First 3D Printing Specialization program with more than 30 hand-selected, trained and certified partners, and is opening more than a dozen new HP 3D Printing Reference and Experience Centers across the U.S. and Europe.
  • The global 3D printing ecosystem is growing. HP has forged relationships with key partners, including BMW Group, Jabil, Johnson & Johnson and Nike. In March of this year, HP also announced the world’s first Open Materials and Applications Lab in Corvallis, Oregon, where partners including Arkema, BASF, Evonik, Henkel and Lehman & Voss are innovating new 3D materials using HP’s Open Platform.
  • Access to production-ready 3D printing capabilities is increasing. HP is working with more than a dozen service bureaus and product design firms to bring HP Multi Jet Fusion and the benefits associated with production-grade technologies to a much larger range of users. These industry leaders such as Fast Radius, Forecast3D, Go Proto, Materialise, ProtoCam, Proto Labs, Shapeways, SigmaDesign and 3D Prod are selecting and installing HP 3D Printing systems to offer their own end-customers the opportunity to design and create production quality 3D printed parts. 

“The industry spoke loud and clear voting HP Multi Jet Fusion as the runaway favorite for the inaugural ‘Innovation of the Year’ award,” said Michael Petch, editor, 3DPrintingIndustry.com. “With the results, our readers recognize that HP is delivering on its promise to disrupt 3D printing and the overall manufacturing sector. The Multi Jet Fusion platform and HP Open Platform are driving innovation and have had an immediate impact for customers and partners.”Badge Winner White.png

For more information about the latest from HP’s 3D printing business, see its recent announcement here.

Published: May 11, 2017

 

 

Multi Jet Fusion test bedMulti Jet Fusion test bedThis week at RAPID+TCT 2017, the world’s largest show dedicated to additive manufacturing, HP demonstrated the growth of its 3D Printing business and scale of the Multi Jet Fusion 3D printing technology with new customers and partners. Among the highlights, HP revealed the addition of a new partner to its open ecosystem for 3D printing materials and applications: the German chemical and consumer goods giant, Henkel AG & Co. Henkel joins Arkema, BASF, Evonik and Lehmann & Voss on the journey to accelerate 3D materials innovation and lower costs.henkel-logo-png.png

We caught up with Fabio Annunziata, HP's business director for 3D materials, to learn more about why HP considers open materials development so important to the digital reinvention of manufacturing. Below is an edited interview: 

 Fabio Annunziata, Director, Business Development and 3D Materials at HPFabio Annunziata, Director, Business Development and 3D Materials at HP

Q: Why is HP putting so much emphasis on 3D printing materials?

Annunziata:  First, some context, 3D printing has been around for decades, but it has primarily been limited to prototyping and tooling. We are now at a tipping point in the industry. HP is eyeing the Fourth Industrial Revolution. We are intent on disrupting the $12 trillion manufacturing space with technology that shifts the economics and part quality toward full-scale manufacturing and just-in-time production.

Now, there are of course a number of triggers that are required to capture that opportunity. One of them is 3D materials. The industry must expand the palette of engineering-grade, multi-purpose thermoplastics needed to meet rigid manufacturing specifications that vary based on the end-use application. Today, there is not enough materials available at cost points that enable the market to grow. However, I predict that with an open approach to materials development, with a catalyst like the HP Open Platform, we will see a thriving ecosystem for 3D printing materials and applications in three to five years. Maybe even sooner.

 Testing_MDK_b_tcm245_2422412_tcm245_2418637_tcm245-2422412.jpg

Q: Tell us more about the current HP Open Platform ecosystem.

Annunziata: Just as it rings true for the 3D printing industry overall, one vendor alone cannot offer the thousands of materials needed for 3D printing to go mainstream. It’s going to take a much larger bench of companies producing materials in almost every imaginable color, strength, weight, consistency, permeability and durability. And we’re going to have to continue looking for ways to drive down material costs so the cost-per-part for production gets low enough to entice manufacturers to deploy 3D printers in full-scale production. This will take a village and strong collaboration with the most knowledgeable and innovative material companies in the world, and we’re committed to building it.

 

Q: Are you happy with the progress so far?

Annunziata: We’re off to a strong start. In addition to newly announced Henkel and the other Open Platform partners we have been working with since  launching in May 2016, we are engaged with more than 50 other companies in varying stages of materials development. We’ve seen enough traction with them to believe the supply of manufacturing-grade 3D printing materials will jump quite a bit next year.

We also recently announced the opening of the world’s first 3D Open Materials and Applications Lab in Corvallis, Ore. It’s a one-of-a-kind lab space where materials developers from all over the world can come to innovate, iterate and test materials, working in tandem with some of the best and brightest additive manufacturing minds in the industry. We already have engineers from about a half-dozen companies working in the lab to develop next-generation materials.

When we opened that lab, we also collaborated with SIGMADESIGN to release the 3D printing industry’s first Materials Development Kit (MDK), which is like Software Development Kits (SDKs) in the smartphone business. The MDK enables companies interested in certifying their materials to quickly test 3D powder spread-ability and compatibility with HP Jet Fusion 3D printers before submitting them to HP for certification. This is already generating serious partner interest because it greatly simplifies testing and certification processes and accelerates the materials innovation cycles.

 

Q: What are the key next steps in HP’s vision for 3D materials innovation?

Annunziata: We’re going to work hard to continue growing the Open Platform ecosystem for 3D printing materials and applications. You’ll see us announcing new partners, programs, tools, services and facilities aimed at delivering a wider range of engineering-grade, multi-purpose thermoplastics optimized for 3D printing efficiency.

What might surprise you is that we are also going to be very vocal about encouraging competitors in this space to drop their proprietary approaches and get on board with this open ecosystem approach. This isn’t razors and razor blades. You can’t make 3D printers and limit the materials that go into them, it will ultimately limit the potential of 3D printing to a small set of applications, and stifle industry growth overall.

If manufacturers are going to embrace 3D printing anytime soon, we must solve the materials availability and cost dilemma. In our view, that can only happen with industrywide cooperation and collaboration.

Published: May 05, 2017

3D rendering of a car's engine.3D rendering of a car's engine.

 HP’s 3D printing technology is reinventing a lot of industries – such as manufacturing and healthcare--- but the one closest to my heart is the auto industry.

This week, I’m off to my old stomping grounds of Detroit to speak at the Society of Plastics Engineers’ Auto EPCON conference, showcasing developments in the design, materials, processing and use of engineering plastics in the global automotive industry.

This is where automakers and their suppliers hear about the latest advances in thermoset and thermoplastic engineering polymersthat’s heat-machined plastics for the average personwhere new developments in materials science and 3D printing are changing the way automakers design and manufacture cars. 

Part of a 3D printed car door. Photo credit: FICOSAPart of a 3D printed car door. Photo credit: FICOSAIn my presentation on the “HP 3D Printing Technology for Prototype and Production Applications”—bear with me if you aren’t a plastics geekI’ll talk about all the new things automakers can do with the HP Jet Fusion 3D Printing Solution, which delivers better quality parts up to 10 times faster and at half the cost of existing commercial 3D printer. For an industry as cost conscious as automotive, that’s a huge value proposition.

There are big opportunities here for HP and for automakers. The auto market spent about $600 million on additive manufacturing in 2016, and that figure is expected to grow to $2.3 billion in 2021, according to SmarTech Publishing.

3D printing has the potential to impact safety and driver experience in addition to helping the manufacturers be more efficient and economical. The ability to design at the voxel level and produce auto parts like never before may enable more resilient, dynamic parts that can better absorb an impact or lead to other improvements compared to traditional methods of manufacturing.

 

On-demand parts and machine tools

We’re still far from the day when you can walk into a dealership and have the car you want printed while you wait, but automakers can already see the benefits of custom part printing, rapid prototyping and production tooling.

3D printing can drastically shorten the lead time to design new cars and update current models with an on-demand model. This shortened design cycle also enables designers, engineers and carmakers to quickly test and refine new designs with a wider variety of prototypes before they go to mass production.

Manufacturers will also be able to produce tools on-demand. BMW, an HP Multi Jet Fusion customer, already claims to have reduced tooling costs by 58 percent and project time by 92 percent in this Deloitte University Press report.F1_x_ray_1218x1080_perspective.png

The idea is that automakers can make completely unique parts, on a mass scale, with minimal waste. They can wait until there is a demand for parts and then produce on demand, minimizing waste or surplus and avoiding the need to make expensive molds for a low-volume part.

In the not-too-distant future, we’ll be talking about custom printing entire vehicles for different types of customers. Taking the family skiing? 3D print a four-wheel drive vehicle with room for snow gear. Commuting alone for long distances? Print a small, high-mileage vehicle. 

 

Building the materials ecosystem

But the printers are only part of the equation. With HP’s Open Materials Platform, we’re tearing down the barriers to 3D print adoption across industries through materials innovation. Manufacturers can be confident that compatible, HP-branded materials will be safe and meet quality standards.

Earlier this year, HP opened the doors to the world’s first 3D Open Platform Materials and Applications Lab, in Corvallis, Ore., where engineers are using state-of-the-art equipment to help materials companies develop, test, certify and deliver the next generation of materials and applications for 3D printing.

Currently, HP is working with four of the world’s leading materials companies to co-develop new materials and refine the materials certification process, but will continue to add partners to the program. ArkemaBASFEvonik and Lehman & Voss announced their commitment to the HP Open Platform and are working on certified materials for the HP Jet Fusion 3D 4200 and HP Jet Fusion 3D 3200 printers.

HP Multi Jet Fusion technology sets the stage for future platforms that could transform color, texture, and mechanical properties at the “voxel” level—a 3D unit of measure that’s just about 50 microns, the width of a human hair. Manipulating printing materials could create 3D printed objects with conductivity, flexibility, embedded data, and translucency—and that's just the beginning. The possible combinations and potential applications are as limitless as the open road.

 

Published: January 19, 2017

 

 Reporting this week from the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, is the below post jointly written by Stephen Nigro, President, 3D Printing business at HP and Shane Wall, Chief Technology Officer at HP and Global Head of HP Labs. Get all the news from Davos, which continues through January 20th, by following #WEF17.

 

BANNER.JPG

 

In the 18th century, it wasn’t clear how the new technologies of water and steam power that were driving early industry would affect the then-largely rural societies of Europe and America. It took about a century before the term “Industrial Revolution” was coined.

By that time, the mechanization of production was well under way, along with the beginnings of a middle class. Meanwhile, the seeds of mass production, which would become the Second Industrial Revolution, were sown. The effects of that electricity-driven transformation — affordable goods and solid assembly-line jobs supporting a secure middle class — would not be fully revealed for decades. Then, in the mid-20th century, electronics and information technology ushered in the Third Industrial Revolution of automation, remaking the world once again. This time, however, the impact was felt within a few years, not decades or centuries.

Today, we are on the cusp of the Fourth Industrial Revolution — and its impact is being felt even before it’s fully under way. This transformation, built on the blending of the physical and digital worlds, will have profound consequences across industries, business, finance and government. That’s why it’s a leading topic at this week’s annual gathering of global leaders at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.

“One of the features of the Fourth Industrial Revolution is that it doesn’t change what we are doing, but it changes us,” said Klaus Schwab, executive director of the Davos event.

How will it change your life?

 

The emergence of immersive commuting

We’re living in a world that’s still experiencing the effects — both good and bad — from the previous industrial revolutions. Our cities are more crowded, globalization has shifted work to the far corners of the planet, and technology has been integrated into every facet of our lives, from social interactions to healthcare. 

The next step for technology will be for computing to become immersive, the way energy and water are delivered to us today. Instead of running our lives from PCs on our desks or smartphones in our pockets, we’ll be guided through the day by technology that’s integrated into everyday objects, like the jewelry we wear, the windshields on our cars and even the buildings where we work and play. These devices will not only be useful tools but will also collect data, further powering and fine-tuning artificial intelligence in a virtuous cycle.

The daily route from home to office in a self-driving car, for instance, will be determined autonomously by the vehicle, based on traffic and other data. Time that was once lost to gridlock can be put to better use.3DP CONCEPTUAL.JPG

 At the office, people will no longer scour through information to make decisions. Instead, artificial intelligence will analyze and synthesize data more efficiently than any human could and present it in more useful ways than on a computer screen. Through virtual reality, an engineer might be transported inside a jet engine to see a problem firsthand. Doctors examining an X-ray will see treatment options layered onto the document through augmented reality — a literal blending of our physical and digital worlds.

 

Reinventing manufacturing

The impact of the Fourth Industrial Revolution will be even greater behind the scenes of the economy, where the blending of the digital and physical will remake how goods are manufactured and distributed. The digital will become the physical with the touch of a button. 

3D PRINTED PART1.jpgFor years, 3D printers have been used to create prototypes and small parts. With the introduction of the HP Jet Fusion 3D printer, physical parts can now be created 10 times faster and half the cost of previous systems. We’re on the path to manufacturing products from digital files that can be transmitted anywhere in the world, allowing goods to flow nearly as efficiently as ideas do today across the internet.

Designers and engineers will be able to work from anywhere, freed from the constraints of traditional manufacturing techniques such as injection molding. Instead, they’ll design products with an unprecedented degree of granularity and precision, making it possible to manufacture goods that simply cannot be made today.

And once those digital files are transmitted, they can be adjusted for local or personal needs before production. For consumers, this technology promises, for the first time, both mass production and mass personalization. Imagine ordering a shoe that’s not just your size but precisely tailored for your feet.

Digitization of manufacturing also promises faster improvement cycles. After all, a digital file is much easier to change than a mold or an assembly line. Shifts in style, demand or functionality will be turned around instantly.

This efficiency of production will create opportunities, too. Manufacturing jobs that had been outsourced will be needed closer to where the final products will be offered, purchased and consumed.

New businesses will be created to support the 3D manufacturing ecosystem. Even in today’s early stages, an open ecosystem is being built to identify sustainable materials from which parts and products will eventually be manufactured. HP is working with partners across multiple industries to find materials to use in digital manufacturing.

 

Changing the world  for the better

It should be no surprise, then, that the Fourth Industrial Revolution is a major theme of this year’s World Economic Forum. The shift from shipping materials and products back and forth around the globe to local sourcing and manufacturing has huge implications for trade, taxation and regulations. What is an export or import when the “product” only exists as digital file? How should it be taxed? What policies need to be invented?

 The $12 trillion manufacturing industry and its global supply are likely to be disrupted. The first savings from more local manufacturing, both economic and environmental, will be the 5 percent of the world’s oil supply that now goes to the mere shipment of goods. Products also can be constructed with materials that are reusable after consumption, minimizing waste. And there will be no need to warehouse unsold products if demand declines since they’ll only be built when needed.

Economists describe this change as a decoupling of economic growth from the world’s limited resources. It’s nothing less than the creation of an environmentally friendly future — a historic benefit for all residents of Earth.

The next Industrial Revolution won’t just change the world. It will sustain it.