Focus on automotive, healthcare and footwear
Specifically, DSM and Twikit will explore new applications in the automotive, healthcare, and footwear industries. The process leading up to the final 3D printed product will always comprise an initial 3D scan, product design, material optimization, testing and modeling. Twikit’s unique morphing algorithm will further enable and improve the design of made-to-measure products.
The automotive industry in particular gains from personalized dashboards, light covers and car seats. Aside from delivering customizability, additive manufacturing facilitates weight reduction and increased vehicle safety. Other important advantages of 3D printing include spare parts on demand, low volume production, and a more efficient production process.
The healthcare industry should also benefit greatly from a digital transformation, i.e. performance-enhanced medical solutions provided by precise, made-to-measure applications based on detailed scans of the human body. 3D printed medical solutions also have shorter lead times and lower production costs than traditionally manufactured equivalents.
Last, but not least, 3D printed and made-to-measure mid insoles will enable major advances in customizable footwear. Individualized soles and insoles are known for their increased performance and comfort, in addition to reducing the risk of injuries for end users.
“Bringing 3D printing to the production floor”
Hugo da Silva, VP Additive Manufacturing DSM, says: “Our partnership with Twikit allows us to make significant advances in key sectors that stand to benefit from the wider-scale adoption of additive manufacturing. In healthcare, for example, 3D printed, made-to-measure prosthetics and orthotics will positively impact people’s lives across the globe. Reinforcing our 3D printing ecosystem with experienced partners like Twikit enables us to offer customers not just materials, but also expertise and insights to translate market needs into total 3D printed solutions. By providing end-to-end solutions, we are able to accelerate the adoption of additive manufacturing at scale."
One specific market Twikit and DSM are focusing on, is the prosthetics and orthotics industry. Despite the clear advantages of advanced additive manufacturing techniques in terms of customizability and production efficiency, their adoption by prosthetics and orthotics manufacturers is still limited.
By integrating DSM’s proven and certified materials with Twikit’s software, the resulting 3D printing turnkey solution provides patients with better and faster care. Patients stand to benefit from a higher level of comfort and faster healing thanks to made-to-measure 3D printed medical solutions. The companies are also working together with printer OEMs, so as to give prosthetics and orthotics manufacturers a turnkey full solution and full access to the 3D printing value chain.
The aim is to market Twikit’s made-to-measure software solution ‘TwikFit’ and develop tested and verified product templates. The jointly developed and integrated applications by DSM and Twikit will be unveiled to the public at Formnext 2019 in Frankfurt.
Martijn Joris, CEO & co-founder of Twikit, adds: “Prosthetics and orthotics are an excellent example of the digital transformation and the enhanced customizability enabled by 3D printing. Our work in other sectors, such as the apparel and automotive industries, has already demonstrated that additive manufacturing can generate high value for OEMs through individualization. By the partnership, we will accelerate growth and innovation across the 3D printing value chain.”