EU makes strong commitment to fast-tracking industrialisation of Additive Manufacturing

June 25, 2018

June 25, 2018

EU makes strong commitment to fast-tracking industrialisation of Additive Manufacturing

Mady Delvaux-Stehres, MEP (left); Philippe Vannson, Head of Unit Photonics Unit at DG Connect of the European Commission (centre); and Florian Feucht, Head of Additive Manufacturing Application and Sales at DMG Mori/Realizer (right) discuss the industrialisation of AM during CECIMO’s AMEC (Courtesy CECIMO)


During CECIMO’s Additive Manufacturing European Conference (AMEC), June 21, 2018, in Brussels, Belgium, a number of high-level EU decision makers are reported to have secured their commitment to fast-tracking the industrialisation of Additive Manufacturing technologies for the European economy. According to CECIMO, pledges were made during AMEC to promote new investments, develop standards and avoid over-regulation, in on-stage discussions with several leading industry figures and the community of AM professionals in attendance.

By showcasing some of the best measures which can be taken to accelerate the uptake of Additive Manufacturing by industry in the EU, the event offered an insight into the growing range of the technology’s applications in Europe. Key examples came from the aerospace, medical, automotive and hydraulics sectors, where the benefits of AM are increasingly recognised. Also discussed were some of the most prevalent issues encountered when implementing AM in a European factory setting, with parallels being drawn between Europe’s industry and other competitors on the global stage.

At the opening of the event, Stewart Lane, General Manager of the UK Sales Division at Renishaw and Chair of the CECIMO Additive Manufacturing Working Group, called on policy makers to embrace a forward-looking vision for industry in Europe, stating, ‘’It’s important to apply caution in introducing legislation in a growing sector like Additive Manufacturing. We need to keep supportive framework conditions.”

MEP Ivan Stefanec (EPP) commented on the importance of backing SMEs in their adoption of AM technologies by taking a cautious approach to regulation, and underlined the importance of EU support for research activities. ‘’Estimates say 3D printing may have an impact of up to $550 billion a year by 2025. I do believe it is very important the EU supports industry’s research activities,” he stated, addressing the role of Horizon 2020 to boost further the growth of this technology.

Highlighting the relevance of EU work on standardisation, MEP Dita Charanzová (ALDE) stated that to design solid Europe-wide standards first and seek their successful international adoption later would greatly assist European industry in moving towards new production methods. However, Charanzová also drew attention to the lack of skilled personnel available to support the technology’s uptake across the EU, commenting, “We will need to start wholly new educational programmes to create the relevant workforce.”

MEP Mady Delvaux-Stehres (S&D) spoke about the existing IPR and liability framework for AM in Europe, linking it up to recent European Parliament initiatives in this context. Stressing that industrial and consumer spaces must clearly differentiated, Delvaux-Stehres reassured the audience about the cautious approach to regulation which will be taken by legal affairs policy-makers in the Parliament. ‘’I believe the existing framework can fit for 3D printing,” she stated.

June 25, 2018

In the latest issue of Metal AM magazine

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Extensive AM industry news coverage, as well as the following exclusive deep-dive articles:

  • Metal powders in Additive Manufacturing: An exploration of sustainable production, usage and recycling
  • Inside Wayland Additive: How innovation in electron beam PBF is opening new markets for AM
  • An end-to-end production case study: Leveraging data-driven machine learning and autonomous process control in AM
  • Consolidation, competition, and the cost of certification: Insight from New York’s AM Strategies 2024
  • Scandium’s impact on the Additive Manufacturing of aluminium alloys
  • AM for medical implants: An analysis of the impact of powder reuse in Powder Bed Fusion

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