Evolve Additive Solutions is partnering with Siemens Digital Industries Software to advance its STEP technology.
MINNEAPOLIS—Evolve Additive Solutions is working to make high-volume production a reality in a digitally driven additive manufacturing (AM) factory. Evolve recently took a step toward accomplishing this goal by establishing a collaborative partnership with the Siemens Digital Industries Software business unit.
By partnering with Siemens, Evolve can use additive manufacturing software from Siemens’ Xcelerator™ portfolio with Evolve’s Selective Thermoplastic Electrophotographic Process (STEP) technology. The idea is to enable Evolve to equip its Scalable Volume Production (SVP) platform with the software required to connect and automate an AM factory for full-speed, high-volume production, Evolve said in a press release.
Siemens’ Xcelerator portfolio of software and services is said to span the entire additive manufacturing process. It includes online order management and delivery, design for additive, generative engineering, process simulation, build job preparation, production planning, and additive manufacturing operations management. Evolve’s additive manufacturing production machines can leverage Siemens’ Xcelerator software to prepare end-user parts for volume production, generate print jobs, manage production planning, drive execution on the factory floor, and monitor the process in real-time, according to the release.
“Evolve is excited to join Siemens Digital Industries Software’s partner community,” said Steve Chillscyzn, CEO of Evolve, in the release. “The strength of our two organizations working together can deliver significant value to our customers. This technology partnership can help usher in a true additive platform of Industry 4.0 transformation.”
Evolve’s additive manufacturing production machines can drive a high-volume end-to-end AM production process, going beyond 3D printing to multi-material and multi-color AM, automated part serialization, and post processing, the company said. The technology partnership with Siemens is said to strengthen Evolve’s AM digital thread by optimizing build preparation, including part slicing and nesting, as well as global production planning, scheduling, and execution.
“We want to take AM production to a whole new level, and partnerships like this are critical,” said Aaron Frankel, vice president of the AM program for Siemens Digital Industries Software. “We’ll be able to leverage the automation capabilities of both companies to deliver customers greater speed, flexibility, and repeatability in high-volume additive manufacturing. Evolve’s STEP technology is designed to be integrated into the kind of automated factories Siemens has excelled at delivering.”
The STEP technology leverages a robust production-scale 2D press for imaging with proprietary IP to precisely align layers and bond them into final parts that are fully dense. Isotropic properties of the parts are said to equal or exceed those of injection molded parts.
According to the release, STEP technology is designed and built from the ground up to be a true production-at-scale manufacturing platform. It is said to perform more like 2D printing than any other additive system and achieves its high speed by applying polymer onto rollers, like toner in a standard 2D paper printer.
The SVP platform is reported to have the capability for high-speed, high-volume additive manufacturing and factory-floor integration.