EOS, Krailling, Germany, today celebrates thirty years since its inauguration on April 24, 1989. Founded by Dr Hans J Langer, the company is widely regarded as one of the leading suppliers of technology and solutions for the industrial Additive Manufacturing of both metals and polymers.
The family-owned company, which began with four employees, now employs 1,200 and has an installed base of nearly 3,500 industrial Additive Manufacturing systems worldwide. Founded when the AM industry was still a new ‘rapid prototyping’ market, EOS was initially focused on stereolithography technology, but in 1997 made the shift to focus exclusively on laser sintering, becoming an early proponent of Powder Bed Fusion (PBF) Additive Manufacturing.
A significant factor in the company’s success has been that, from an early stage in its development, EOS was able to offer – in addition to its AM systems – the materials, processes, and software tailored to suit these systems for optimal results. In order to offer additional support to companies using AM technology, EOS founded consulting unit Additive Minds in 2015. According to the company, this unit has since consulted on more than 300 successful customer projects.
Over the years since EOS’s founding, Dr Langer has also established the EOS Ecosystem, a network of EOS investments and external partners, including the company AM Ventures, which supports promising start-ups. According to EOS, ongoing cooperation between the various companies in the ecosystem enables them to combine expertise to enable the implementation of customer-specific manufacturing solutions along the entire value chain – from concept to design and engineering, production, post-processing, and ultimately the finished part.
In recent years, EOS has turned its attention to the integration of AM into existing serial production environments. The goal is to achieve highly flexible serial production workflow that combines industrial AM and conventional manufacturing technologies in a ‘digital factory’, making use of machine connectivity and automation.
According to Dr Adrian Keppler, EOS CEO, “The establishment of complete digital production platforms is a major goal that we are aiming to achieve in the coming years. It’s not just about providing the right 3D printing solutions, but about evaluating, planning, setting-up, and optimising AM production cells to leverage all the advantages and possibilities of digitalisation.”
In July 2018, Metal AM’s Emily-Jo Hopson attended EOS’s Technology Days for an advance preview of its latest metal Additive Manufacturing system, the EOS M 300, and a look at its vision for AM and the technology’s place in the digital factory of the future. For further insight into areas that are key to EOS’s current development strategy, read the full report in the Autumn 2018 edition of Metal Additive Manufacturing magazine.