MELD collaborates with Sumitomo to extend the reach of large-scale metal 3D printing in Japan.


A Game-Changing Partnership: MELD Manufacturing Teams Up with Sumitomo Corporation

In a major development that highlights the increasing global interest in large-scale metal 3D printing, MELD Manufacturing Corporation has announced its strategic partnership with Sumitomo Corporation. This Fortune 500 trading and business investment company will act as MELD’s first representative in Japan, focusing on sales, marketing, and support for MELD’s products and services. The partnership aims to utilize Sumitomo’s extensive network and experience in bringing new technologies to market, especially in industries like shipbuilding, aerospace, and defense.

“Nanci Hardwick, CEO of MELD Manufacturing, expressed her confidence in Sumitomo Corporation, labeling them as a trusted partner. According to her, Sumitomo’s vast network and expertise in introducing new technologies to the market will be invaluable as MELD expands its presence in Japan. Together, they aim to implement the advantages of additive manufacturing in shipbuilding, aerospace, and defense industries.”

As part of this partnership, MELD will install its renowned printers in Japan. These printers are known for their large print volumes, measured in meters. They employ a proprietary additive manufacturing (AM) technology that enables the creation of metal parts that were previously only achievable through forgings.

MELD Manufacturing has been a trailblazer in the field of Additive Friction Stir Deposition (AFSD), a cold-welding process that overcomes several limitations associated with other metal 3D printing techniques. Earlier this year, the company spun off a new business called MELD PrintWorks Corporation, which is solely dedicated to providing AFSD metal 3D printing services. This technology offers numerous advantages over traditional manufacturing methods, including faster production times, reduced costs, and improved quality.

The U.S. Army’s Rock Island Arsenal is a testament to the capabilities of MELD’s technology, housing the “world’s largest” metal 3D printer. The absence of sintering or melting in MELD’s process allows for the use of commercially available, solid-state feedstocks without the challenges associated with porosity or cracking. This capability is particularly valuable for military applications, where large, heavy metal parts are often required. Therefore, the Army commissioned MELD and Ingersoll to develop a massive machine for producing tank parts as part of its Jointless Hull project.

Sumitomo Corporation, one of Japan’s largest conglomerates and known for being the parent company of Mazda Motor Corporation, is no stranger to the world of 3D printing. In 2020, the company increased its investment in metal AM service bureau Sintavia to scale its production capacity for flight-critical components. This investment aligns with Sumitomo’s strategy of contributing to Sintavia’s growth and enhancing its value proposition, particularly in the aerospace industry.

The partnership between MELD and Sumitomo comes at a time when 3D printing is rapidly gaining traction within the U.S. military and global governments, coinciding with significant advancements made by Japanese businesses in the industry. The collaboration between Sumitomo and two emerging leaders in metal 3D printing for the U.S. military and defense contractors showcases the dedication of all parties involved. Furthermore, the booming large-format 3D printing sector is projected to reach a value of $739 million by 2026, according to a report by Additive Manufacturing Research.

As MELD continues to expand its technology, the separate entities of MELD Manufacturing and MELD PrintWorks present intriguing possibilities for collaborations with service bureaus like Sintavia. The future of 3D printing is evolving rapidly, and staying up-to-date with the latest news and developments in the industry is essential. Be sure to follow all the latest updates from the 3D printing world and receive information and offers from third-party vendors.

*Note: This blog post has been rewritten using different language, but the story and logic remain the same.*

Original source


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