Optomec, the leading developer of 3D printing technologies, has secured strategic investments from GE Ventures and Autodesk – through its Spark Investment Fund – to fast-track the development, promotion and deployment of its proprietary solutions for a range of production applications, including 3D Printed Sensors/Antenna, Advanced Electronics Packaging and 3D Printed Metal.
Optomec’s relationship with GE was first established in 2005, when GE Global Research acquired an Aerosol Jet printed electronics system that is currently being used across the company’s Power & Water, Aviation and Healthcare segments. More recently, GE worked with Optomec in the area of 3D Printed Sensors that are directly printed onto high-value components. These sensors provide critical input to structural health and have the potential to substantially reduce the life cycle cost of complex mechanical systems.
“It’s always a great opportunity when we are able to invest in a company we’ve been working with as part of a customer relationship,” said Steve Taub, Senior Director, Advanced Manufacturing at GE Ventures.
“We know from direct experience that Optomec’s Advanced Manufacturing solutions are successful and look forward to its continued developments within the space.”
Optomec has also previously worked with Autodesk and used its software tools to generate design data that ultimately drives Optomec’s printers. Both companies are now looking to collaboratively develop software tools that leverage the Spark 3D printing platform in better connecting hardware and software for additive manufacturing.
“The Spark Investment Fund aims to push the boundaries of additive manufacturing and we believe a connected ecosystem between hardware and software is key in spurring innovation and collaboration,” said Samir Hanna, vice president and general manager, Consumer and 3D Printing, Autodesk.
“We’re excited to have a shared vision with Optomec in enabling additive manufacturing technology to be seamlessly integrated into conventional production platforms to advance the overall design and fabrication process.”
Optomec CEO, Dave Ramahi, said the ultimate aim of the collaboration with GE and Autodesk was to enable the company to offer more seamless industrially hardened solutions that reduce barriers in the adoption of additive manufacturing.
“Optomec is extremely pleased to welcome GE Ventures and Autodesk as strategic investors. Both companies are at the vanguard in embracing additive manufacturing as a next generation production technology.” Mr Ramahi added.
“Our strategic visions are well aligned on many fronts, ranging from the need for an open systems approach to drive adoption, to the role that these technologies can play in advancing key initiatives such as the Industrial Internet and IoT. We are very fortunate to be able to draw on their technical and commercial expertise.”