Australian 3D printing specialist Aurora Labs (ASX: A3D) has joined forces with engineering firm WorleyParsons (ASX: WOR) to create an additive manufacturing joint venture targeting mining, energy and infrastructure sectors.
Known as AdditiveNow, the new entity will use rapid manufacturing metal 3D printing technology, along with engineering expertise from WorleyParsons’ subsidiary Advisian Digital, to design, produce and deploy complex components for energy and resources operators.
It will offer a complete manufacturing-based service combining Aurora’s additive products and technology with WorleyParsons’ network of industry contacts.
Among AdditiveNow’s offerings will be a consultation service to assist clients with their additive manufacturing plans and conduct optimisation studies to improve efficiency, operability and manufacturability.
It will also offer additive manufacturing-related engineering such as parts design, bespoke metal 3D printing, and parts optimisation and certification services.
Clients will be able to take advantage of agile manufacturing and short production runs through to final production and deployment of parts with the aim of minimising costs and improving total additive performance.
AdditiveNow had its beginnings in November 2017, when Aurora and WorleyParsons signed a binding term sheet to create a joint venture-based additive manufacturing solutions centre.
At the time, the companies said they planned to introduce 3D printing to major infrastructure, mining and resource industries worldwide, providing a “competitive advantage through expert use of key technologies”.
The duo said the centre would focus on the licensing and distribution of Aurora’s 3D metal parts printers, design and certification, in addition to the potential establishment of a print bureau and powder production.
A step forward
Aurora managing director David Budge said AdditiveNow will be a “significant step forward” for the company and the 3D printing industry.
“We have already identified and initiated discussions with specific customers for efficiency opportunities to reduce their capital committed to spare parts and inventory,” he said.
“Potentially, we could replace aspects of the traditional supply chain with 3D metal printing technology which will result in reduced inventory holding costs, freight and manufacturing lead times.”
Mr Budge said AdditiveNow’s service line-up and the timetable for its deployment would depend in part, on the continued development of Aurora’s 3D metal printing products, systems and technologies.
At midday, shares in Aurora Labs were trading 4.67% lower at $0.510.