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Additive Manufacturing – Shaping The Future of Industrial Manufacturing

For four days recently, Formnext 2022 turned host city Frankfurt, Germany into the global capital of industrial 3D printing. And this year’s exhibition was very much in tune with the times. As the coronavirus pandemic continues and new political and economic challenges emerge as a result, additive manufacturing can play a key role in decentralizing manufacturing processes and production, making supply chains more resilient, and facilitating resource and energy efficient production in order to get innovative new products onto the market faster.

A glance at the figures shows just how important Formnext has become. With 802 exhibitors (the corresponding figure in 2021 was 606) and 51,148 square meters of booked exhibition space, the performance of the world’s leading exhibition for additive manufacturing and modern production was virtually on a par with pre-Covid levels. And with the lineup of eager experts and executives expanding by 65,6% to 29,581 (the corresponding figure in 2021 was 17,859), Formnext 2022 was a testament to the enthusiasm that exists for meeting and sharing ideas face-to-face. These figures confirm the impressive track record of the event, which is now in its eighth year.

Leading international companies dazzled visitors with even more efficient production systems and an array of innovations. In addition, numerous well-known international corporations, including GKN Sinter Metals Components, Nikon, Oerlikon, Sandvik, SMS Group, and presented innovative solutions for every stage of the process chain. The numerous world premieres and innovative developments included novel AM technologies and new and improved AM systems, as well as new materials ranging from wood to ceramics, software solutions, service offerings, post-processing solutions, and much more.

“We are proud of the fact that Formnext has returned to its impressive pre-Covid level,” says Sascha F. Wenzler, Vice President Formnext at event organizer Mesago Messe Frankfurt GmbH. “We have once again demonstrated the importance of Formnext as the world’s premiere AM platform and the vital role of face-to-face interaction at Formnext for the further development of this highly innovative sector.”

Visitors to the event were impressed by how Formnext has grown and by the sheer number of innovations on show.

“The possibilities of AM are limitless and we have to unleash this potential in a way that ensures more sustainable manufacturing“, states Frank Rosengreen Lorenzen, CEO at Danish AM Hub. “Having Formnext as the world’s leading meeting point to discuss and develop these opportunities is of extreme importance for the AM ecosystem, but also for manufacturing as a whole.”

Alex Kingsbury, Industry Consultant at Additive Economics underlines the importance of AM for industrial production and states: “As modern manufacturers look to become more agile and responsive, they inevitably need to look to advanced and emerging technologies. Additive manufacturing is an innovative technology that when properly harnessed can supercharge manufacturing capability. Formnext is the world’s premier 3D printing event that showcases the depth and breadth of additive manufacturing hardware, software, materials. Despite the fact that you can access additive manufacturing technology from all over the world, Formnext remains the centre of gravity where everyone in the AM ecosystem converges.”