The European Association of the Machine Tool Industries (CECIMO) represents several key companies in the 3D printing world, and plays an important role in determining the next direction the European industry should take, along with promoting the development of economy, science, and technology, such as Industry 4.0 tenets like 3D printing. CECIMO works with the movers and shakers to create an enabling policy and framework, both business and regulatory, for the adoption of AM in Europe.
The organization, which passes along the concerns of the AM industry to the authorities with the European Union (EU), also partners on several EU projects related to industrial AM in Europe, and sets up high-level conferences in the European Parliament between policy-makers and top AM businesses. Last year, CECIMO released an overview of relevant additive manufacturing policies for EU authorities, before teaming up with the European Foundation for Welding, Joining and Cutting (EWF) in order to increase the adoption and use of AM technology.
Now in continuing this important mission, CECIMO has signed an agreement with non-profit organization EPMA, the European Powder Metallurgy Association, with the goal of using diversified actions to promote and drive forward 3D printing technology.
EPMA, which was founded in Brussels in 1989, shares the same focus as CECIMO, and has been working to increase awareness of AM technology, along with fostering collaboration through knowledge exchange, workshops, and research programs in the metal AM community. However, it has a special focus on metal powder 3D printing.
Powder metallurgy (PM) in Europe accounted for a turnover of over €11 billion in 2016. The continent is the largest sector of PM in the world, in terms of annual sale values, and through legislative lobbying, projects, and promotional and training activities, the EPMA works with all aspects of the PM supply chain: additive manufacturing, core PM, hard materials and diamond tools, hot isostatic pressing, functional materials, and powder injection molding.
We know that 3D printing can offer companies fast product development cycles, mass customization, a sustainable process, and design flexibility. But adoption of disruptive technologies like additive manufacturing can take a while to pick up, which is why CECIMO and EPMA are working together to support the industry of Europe.
The EPMA, with the help of its European Additive Manufacturing Group (EuroAM) has introduced several initiatives, such as Metal AM Seminars, a flyer, technical programs and collaborative projects, and an Introduction to Additive Manufacturing brochure. The organization also participates in multiple projects, funded by Europe, that support the R&D efforts of the metal AM industry and represent PM.
By beginning this partnership, both CECIMO and the EPMA agree to share information on AM advocacy activities, in an effort to coordinate their own actions; the two will also be keeping an eye out for AM opportunities in EU project proposals in future calls.
The partnership between CECIMO and the EPMA, according to a CECIMO release, “points at the advancement of additive manufacturing in the industrial landscape and at the removal of barriers to the future development of this technology.”