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Joint Venture Creates Additive Manufacturing Center of Excellence

UNITED GRINDING Group AG, a supplier of precision machines for grinding, eroding, lasering, measuring as well as combination machining has joined forces with inspire AG - a spinoff from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology Zurich and a leader in industrial research and innovation - to create a Center of Excellence for Additive Manufacturing. The joint venture, called IRPD, supports manufacturers through the development, research and production of three-dimensional workpieces constructed using additive processes.

As part of the collaboration, UNITED GRINDING will provide its decades of grinding system experience, especially in terms of how those systems and that process dovetail with additive manufacturing operations. The company also brings to the table its application engineering capabilities to help manufacturers rethink their existing part processes and how those might benefit from the incorporation of both grinding and additive technologies.

IRPD produces functional components with optimized geometries using two key methods: selective laser melting (SLM) for metal processing and selective laser sintering (SLS) for plastics. During the process, computer controls generate production from fluid or solid materials according to predefined shapes and sizes. The company also uses 3-D printing technologies.

"The new SLM and SLS production methods bring clear advantages to manufacturers who want to speed and reduce the cost of product development," said a spokesperson. IRPD provides engineering services and is able to create complex components in different variants without additional tooling or CNC programming. "Product design and production is further enhanced by reduced error rates through early detection, and the company facilitates quick patent applications," said the spokesperson.

IRPD produces components for the automotive, energy, aerospace, transportation / heavy industry, die / mold and precision / mechanical engineering industries. Other applications of SLM and SLS methods are in the architecture/art and medical/orthopedics industries.

Sandro Bottazzo, CSO at IRPD explained that energy efficiency is another key goal at the company. "For example, we have designed and produced grinding machine coolant nozzles that optimize cooling while also reducing coolant required."

In addition to component design and production services, IRPD offers education programs for product engineers and manufacturers. The modular Think Additive workshops are designed to show companies the benefits of additive manufacturing technologies and further expand application possibilities. For more information, visit

For more information contact:

UNITED GRINDING North America, Inc.

510 Earl Blvd.

Miamisburg, OH 45342


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