SPEE3D’s Role in Ukraine’s 3D Printing Strategy: Turning Rumors into Reality.


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The mysterious 3D printers supplied to Ukraine have generated a lot of curiosity and speculation. It has long been known that Ukrainian forces were using desktop 3D printers to produce small parts for various systems, particularly for bomb-dropping drones. However, there were rumors of larger-scale industrial 3D printers being supplied to the country as well. This week, it was revealed that Essentium has provided a number of polymer machines that are being deployed in forward locations near the front. These machines are likely being used to produce critical spare parts on demand. But what about metal systems?

In a previous blog post, I speculated that the rumored equipment might be the supersonic metal 3D printing systems from Australia-based SPEE3D. Unlike the more popular LPBF process, SPEE3D’s technology has the unique ability to withstand challenging operating conditions. They have even created a mobile industrial 3D printing platform called “XSPEE3D” – essentially a printer in a shipping container with associated equipment. This configuration has been extensively tested with various Western military organizations.

It turns out that my speculations may have been confirmed. The Australian Defence Ministry announced that they are providing a $20 million package of military assistance to Ukraine, which includes a 3D metal printer from SPEE3D. Additionally, the ministry mentioned that other Australian developed equipment, such as de-mining equipment, portable x-ray machines, and counter-drone systems, will contribute to Ukraine’s defence. The equipment is made by four innovative Australian defence industry companies: DroneShield, Micro-X, Minelab, and SPEE3D.

SPEE3D confirmed that their WarpSPEE3D printers were indeed supplied to Ukraine by the Department of Defense through the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative. They also mentioned that they trained Ukrainian soldiers and frontline engineers to leverage the manufacturing capabilities of their equipment and create new materials for repairing military machinery. Several C-suite executives of SPEE3D, including the co-founder, CTO, and CRO, personally trained 13 Ukrainian soldiers for two weeks in Poland, teaching them the engineering fundamentals and proper use of the supersonic 3D printing systems. The training covered subjects like engineering design theory, risk management, equipment management, and upkeep processes, with all the materials translated into Ukrainian.

Overall, seven WarpSPEE3D devices were provided to Ukraine, and these machines have the advantage of being able to quickly produce parts, even faster than LPBF systems. This is not only good news for SPEE3D but also for Ukraine’s defence capabilities.

In conclusion, the mystery surrounding the 3D printers supplied to Ukraine has been partially solved. The polymer machines are likely from Essentium, while the metal 3D printers are indeed from SPEE3D. With the support of the Australian Defence Ministry and the training provided by SPEE3D, Ukrainian soldiers and engineers can now leverage the unique capabilities of these machines to repair military machinery and strengthen the country’s defence. It will be interesting to see how this technology continues to evolve and impact the field of military operations.

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“Why did the 3D printer go to therapy? Because it had too many layers of unresolved issues!”


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GCode-Guru

Meet the mastermind behind NozzleNerds.com: GCode-Guru, a 3D printing wizard whose filament collection rivals their sock drawer. Here to demystify 3D tech with a mix of expert advice, epic fails, and espresso-fueled rants. If you've ever wondered how to print your way out of a paper bag (or into a new coffee cup), you're in the right place. Dive into the world of 3D printing with us—where the only thing more abundant than our prints is our sarcasm.

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