That didn’t take long.
After announcing the establishment of a base in Europe US-based PostProcess Technologies announced an interesting partnership with Germany-based Rösler.
PostProcess Technologies produces a series of “smart” post-processing devices for 3D printing that intelligently remove supports or smooth the inevitably layered surfaces of freshly printed objects. Sometimes their equipment does both processes in the same machine.
But who is Rösler? It turns out they are a worldwide leader in post-processing technologies – but specifically for non-3D printing manufacturing. Their products include processes for:
High Pressure Water Jet Blasting
Polishing / Smoothing
Cleaning / Oil Removal / Degreasing
And Other Special Applications
Certainly some of their equipment could be – and likely has been – used for 3D print smoothing, as equipment is easily reused. However, their products are not nearly as sophisticated as those from PostProcess Technologies. Thus this is a notable boost for their product line, and they may be able to satisfy more of their customers who are increasingly moving into 3D printing processes.
Rösler President and CEO Stephan Rösler confirmed this in a statement:
“This marks a significant strategic expansion for Rösler into additive manufacturing and reinforces our commitment as one of the most progressive manufacturing solution providers to stay at the forefront of finishing technology for all manufacturing.”
For PostProcess Technologies this is a very big deal, because it now provides the much smaller company with a pre-made sales force for their equipment. Rösler currently operates in 17 countries, mainly in Europe, but also including China and the US, where it is possible the Rösler sales agents could theoretically supplement the existing PostProcess crew.
Managing Director of PostProcess Technologies International Bruno Bourguet said:
“The additive space is rapidly growing, especially in Europe, and as such, the demand for an automated post-printing solution is accelerating. Rösler is a unique partner for PostProcess, bringing expertise in finishing systems with a broad European footprint, thousands of existing customers, and a strong presence across a range of industries that will greatly benefit from PostProcess’ proprietary and integrated software, hardware, and chemistry solution.”
This is a very good move by both companies, because of the increased use of 3D printing in manufacturing settings. Manufactured products always must have consistency in finish, and the only way to guarantee that is to use intelligent finishing equipment.
Manual finishing is of course possible and still popular, but the manual element implies that the results will sometimes vary from the ideal standard. I believe that there will be a strong increase in demand for intelligent finishing machines that will persist for some time into the future – and indeed partnerships focusing on just that are increasingly being seen.