Focus is on Australia as GE Additive has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the New South Wales Government.
The MoU targets industrial 3D printing in NSW, particularly centering around the delightfully named Western Sydney Aerotropolis initiative.
“Given our deep connection to the aviation and aerospace industry it makes sense for us to be part of the initiative. We intend to work with NSW Government to put advanced manufacturing at the heart of the Aerotropolis. There’s great potential to build an additive ecosystem in Australia – but such ecosystems flourish best when you get companies, universities and policymakers coming together. By having a shared vision we hope to help NSW realize the potential that additive brings and hope that in time there will be positive effect on supply chains, future jobs and skills and ultimately economic impact,” Debbra Rogers, Chief Commercial Officer, GE Additive, told Fabbaloo.
Western Sydney Aerotropolis
As fabulous as the word “aerotropolis” is, the concept is perhaps even more intriguing.
NSW Government describes it as being “on the doorstep of one of Australia’s most transformational infrastructure projects.”
“Over the coming decades, residents and workers in Western Sydney will benefit from easy access to strong local and international connections and a 24-hour economy centred around the new Western Sydney Airport,” NSW Government explains.
The initiative is set to bring in 200,000 new jobs in a variety of advanced industry sectors including: aerospace and defence, manufacturing, healthcare, freight and logistics, agribusiness, education, and research.
Another thing these industries have in common? They’re all increasingly turning to additive manufacturing for solutions development.
Additive Manufacturing for the Aerotropolis
The MoU was signed this week when NSW Premier Gladys Berejiklian visited GE Additive’s Customer Experience Centre in Munich.
“3D printing is on the cutting edge of manufacturing globally and this deal will help make Western Sydney the nation’s leader,” Berejiklian said. “Our partnership with GE Additive will create many hi-tech jobs across the aerospace, medical and automotive sectors.”
She confirmed that the move is key to the growth of the Aerotropolis project, particularly in work dedicated to a new Space Industry Hub:
“We are aiming to triple the size of Australia’s space sector to $12 billion by 2030, creating up to 20,000 new jobs in this industry alone. This agreement demonstrates our commitment to look globally to bring the best opportunities to NSW.”
In December, NSW Government signed an agreement with 18 entities in NSW including space companies, research and educational institutions, and CSIRO (Australia’s federal Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation) to establish that new Space Industry Hub.
Industrial 3D printing operations are often coming into play in space-focused R&D, so the move to work with GE Additive isn’t necessarily a surprise — the company has built up solid experience in aerospace.
While GE itself is US-based, its operations are global, as is, increasingly, the reach of its GE Additive arm.
“Adopting an ecosystem approach to additive manufacturing makes sense, but given NSW’s rich seam of talent, natural resources and ambition for the future, we are particularly excited at the impact our work together could have, not just in NSW, but nation-wide and more broadly across the APAC region,” Jason Oliver, President and CEO of GE Additive, said.