In the latest issue of Metal AM magazine (available here for free download), we report on our visit to GM’s Additive Industrialization Center (AIC), in Warren, Michigan, USA. Within the article, it was revealed that the automotive company is making further investment in metal Additive Manufacturing, including the purchase of two new Velo3D Sapphire AM machines and an upgrade of its suite of EOS machines, replacing its current EOS M400-4s with M300-4s.
Opened in 2020, the AIC was at that time identified as a fundamental pillar of GM’s transformation into a more agile, innovative company, bringing speed, flexibility and cost reductions. This messaging pointed to a future where AM is widely used to produce end-use parts, as well as bringing a host of other advantages to GM.
In addition to the new machine purchases, the AIC houses a wide range of AM machines for metals and polymers that include EOS M290 metal Laser Beam Powder Bed Fusion (PBF-LB) machines and polymer EOS P396 PBF-LB machines, HP Multi Jet Fusion 5210 polymer Binder Jetting (BJT) machines, and Stratasys F900, F450, F370 polymer Material Extrusion (MEX/P) machines.
The Metal AM article reveals how the automotive producer is leveraging the opportunities presented by Additive Manufacturing, with some major, inevitable differences to the path taken by the aerospace and medical sectors. The AIC is reputedly already seeing tangible payoffs in both part development & manufacturing, and teams are saving time and resources due to not having to build tooling for prototype parts.