Additive manufacturing leaders invest in Optomec

GE Ventures (Menlo Park, CA) and Autodesk (San Rafael, CA) have made strategic investments in Optomec (Albuquerque, NM), which offers production-grade additive manufacturing. The proceeds will be used to further the development, promotion, and deployment of Optomec's proprietary solutions for a range of production applications, including 3D-printed sensors/antennas, advanced electronics packaging, and 3D-printed metal. The companies also intend to expand on a variety of historic collaborations.

Optomec’s commercial relationship with GE dates back to 2005, when GE Global Research was one of the first customers to acquire an aerosol jet printed electronics system. More recently, GE has expanded its installation with systems at its Power & Water, Aviation, and Healthcare facilities. One key area of collaboration is 3D sensors that are directly printed onto high-value components. Such tightly integrated sensors provide critical input to structural health and have the potential to substantially reduce the lifecycle cost of complex mechanical systems.

Similarly, Optomec has previously worked with Autodesk using its software tools to generate design data that ultimately drives Optomec’s printers. Both companies intend to work to collaboratively develop better connecting hardware and software for additive manufacturing.

Together, the ultimate aim of such collaborations is to enable Optomec to offer more seamless, industrially hardened solutions that reduce barriers in the adoption of additive manufacturing.

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