Saturday, 22 December 2012

Ford seeds low cost 3D Printers throughout its design shops

An article published by GigaOM and reproduced in BusinessWeek claims that Ford Motor Co intends to put low cost 3D Printers near the workspace of every engineer, in order to encourage their creativity, design thinking and prototyping. 

Exactly how many 3D printers are already inside Ford is unclear. Engineers always love new tools.

"A Ford spokesman... while it’s tough to give an exact count of the number of employees who have the 3D printers, the company has multiple locations at the company’s Dearborn headquarters where hundreds of engineers have access. And at the carmaker’s Silicon Valley Lab in Palo Alto, all employees have Makerbots. The most popular areas they are in use today at Ford are in the Vehicle Design and Infotronics group."

If this is a trend, expect other global manufacturers to discover that a simple Fused Deposition Modelling (FDM) printer is a good enough tool to give to engineers. 

With FDM prices falling, and capabilities rising, is this a market? If so, good news for MakerBot Industries and the rest. 

Source of the story

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