Danville, Virginia will be the home of Gefertec’s first US metal printing facility. Gefertec invested $1.9 million into the project, and the first two years of temporary space at the Institute for Advanced Learning and Research (IALR) will be covered by the Danville Pittsylvania Regional Industrial Facility Authority (RIFA).
“Gefertec is excited to announce the opening of our Danville – Pittsylvania County location as our first U.S. location for our 3DMP additive manufacturing business,” said President of Gefertec, Andrea Clark.
Their technology combines a five-axis (or three-axis) SIEMENS-controlled motion table with arc welding, meaning it can print overhangs without the need for support materials and it uses metal wire as feedstock rather than metal powder. Metal wire is safer to handle, cheaper to buy, easier to store, and enables a significantly higher material utilization than metal powder. Their arc603 machine can fabricate components as large as three cubic meters in a wide range of metals. Printed parts come out near-net-shape so they are 3D scanned and then machined to reach their final geometry, which isn’t uncommon for 3D printed metal parts. The three-step process is still shorter than the conventional manufacturing process.
“This is in alignment with our long-term commitment to Danville and the Institute for Advanced Learning and Research and we are excited to expand our business to the U.S.. Danville has been chosen for its excellent business and community support and its involvement in the advanced manufacturing sector,” said CEO of Gefertec, Tobias Roehrich.
The facility will create at least eight new jobs and will serve industrial customers as well as research institutions. As more of these advanced additive manufacturing facilities open, the more the traditional machinist’s job incorporates 3D printing. That’s exactly why we’re seeing more investments into curriculums that include 3D printing.