SAP and APWorks Aim to Transform Manufacturing Supply Chain with 3D Printing

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SAP Collaborates with APWorks to Accelerate and Remaster the On-Demand Industrial 3D Printing Process

SAP announced the signing of a co-innovation agreement with APWorks, a subsidiary of Airbus Defence and Space GmbH, which aims to accelerate the adoption and standardization of industrial 3D printing initiatives for the aerospace and defense industry.

APWorks plans to use the 3D printing services recently announced by SAP to operate a bionics network that connects 3D printing experts and end users. These services will allow APWorks to manufacture 3D printed components such as armrests and brackets, improve fuel efficiency and reduce CO2 emissions.

APWorks can also better manage spare part orders in real time to deliver qualified products for safety-critical applications in aerospace and other industries.

The co-innovation agreement between SAP and APWorks plans to address the following areas:

  • Digitalization and simplification of the production part approval process
  • Screening and validating parts for using the 3D printing process
  • Designing and redesigning of a part or system to optimize for on-demand manufacturing and 3D printing
  • Accelerating and standardizing the processes for certifying the manufacturing of parts by 3D printing firms
  • Securing an on-demand budgetary price for manufacturing firms to evaluate 3D printing parts versus traditional manufacturing, including cost components such as tax and warehousing, using the SAP Product Lifecycle Costing solution
  • Covering each stage from production floor to customer door — for seamless routing of the order

3D printing is now moving beyond industrial prototyping and into manufacturing industries using multiple materials including metals, plastics and ceramics, which is helping to reinvent the manufacturing supply chain. To address this, SAP announced at the SAPPHIRE NOW conference that it will extend its supply chain solutions to include collaboration and certification cloud service for industrial 3D printing, based on SAP HANA Cloud Platform, as well as an on-demand 3D printing manufacturing network. These services intend to deliver manufacturing and logistical cost savings, reduce CO2 emissions and eliminate complex supply chain issues.

“Innovation in on-demand 3D printing is now revolutionizing traditional manufacturing,” said Torsten Welte, global head of Aerospace and Defense Industry, SAP.

“In the next few years 3D printing will be widely adopted across manufacturing industries. The aerospace and defense market will transform digitally to strive to achieve near-zero unplanned downtime on commercial flights as well as support high production turnaround at a lower cost. What makes 3D printing most attractive in aerospace is the removal of many costs associated with traditional manufacturing like stocking inventory. Users are enabled to print the parts they need, as needed.”

Joachim Zettler, CEO of APWorks added,

“The ability to 3D print all the possible components of an A350 aircraft could reduce the weight of it by nearly a ton,”

“On-demand 3D printing cloud service from SAP can help us to develop our vision for distributed, on-demand production of aerospace components and still meet the high quality standards necessary to make the aircraft fly.”

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