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NTU Singapore launches $30m 3D printing research center

29 May 2014

To establish $5m joint-lab for 3D printing with SLM Solutions - which this month went to IPO on Frankfurt Börse.

Medical devices and tissue printing are among the key research areas that Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University (NTU) is accelerating with the launch of its new $30m 3D printing center. Growth markets for this manufacturing innovation include, for example, knee and bone implants customized to fit individual patients, which can be easily made using 3D printers.

The NTU Additive Manufacturing Centre was officially launched by Mr Lee Yi Shyan, Singapore’s Senior Minister of State for Trade & Industry & National Development, on May 28. At the launch, NTU also signed a $5m joint laboratory agreement with SLM Solutions, Lübeck, Germany, a leading manufacturer of 3D printers, which itself has just floated on the Frankfurt Börse.

Named SLM Solutions@NAMC, the new lab aims to develop next-generation 3D printers which can print much larger parts than today’s printers and new types of materials. It will also develop platforms that can print multiple materials in one single build.

NTU President Professor Bertil Andersson said, “Additive manufacturing is a revolutionary technology that is changing the face of innovation and that NTU is well placed to excel in the fast growing field. Although we are a young university, we are already leading with two decades of research and development in this field.

“Our new additive manufacturing center not only aims to collaborate with industry to develop innovative, practical solutions but also brings together the best talents in the field. It is fitted out with the latest 3D printing machines, such as laser-aided machines for printing metal parts for industry and bio-printers which are able to print real human tissue.”

NTU’s additive manufacturing center aims to keep Singapore at the forefront of 3D printing technologies and is supported by the Singapore Economic Development Board.

In conjunction with NAMC’s official launch, NTU also opened Singapore’s 1st International Conference on Progress in Additive Manufacturing, which ran through this week and saw more than a hundred scientific papers from over 20 countries being shared and presented among academics and industry players.

SLM Solutions launches IPO
On May 9, SLM Solutions Group AG announced its IPO and shares (ISIN: DE000A111338) started trading on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. The issue price was €18 and the initial listing price €18.20.

Dr Martin Reck, Managing Director, Cash Market at Deutsche Börse Frankfurt, told Mondo Visione, the UK-based publisher of global stock exchange news and analysis, “We are delighted that SLM Solutions chose Frankfurt for its IPO, which marks a milestone in the company's history in terms of public attention and growth opportunities.”

Dr Markus Rechlin, CEO of SLM Solutions Group, told Mondo Visione, “Metal-based additive manufacturing technology is ready to be integrated into complex production environments. Now is exactly the right timing for us to acquire growth capital through an IPO to be able to satisfy the rising demand for our solutions.”

About the Author

Matthew Peach is a contributing editor to optics.org.

InfraTec GmbHEclipse OpticsPhoton Engineering, LLCOcean InsightSacher Lasertechnik GmbHBristol Instruments, Inc.LBP Optics Ltd
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