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Eujin Pei · Mario Monzón 

Alain Bernard Editors

in Training and
Additive Manufacturing—Developments
in Training and Education
Eujin Pei Mario Monzón

Alain Bernard

Additive Manufacturing—
Developments in Training
and Education

Eujin Pei Alain Bernard
College of Engineering, Design ILS2N UMR CNRS 6004
and Physical Sciences, Institute Ecole centrale de Nantes
of Materials and Manufacturing Nantes CX 03
Brunel University London France

Mario Monzón
Edificio de Fabricación Integrada
Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria
Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Las Palmas

ISBN 978-3-319-76083-4 ISBN 978-3-319-76084-1 (eBook)

Library of Congress Control Number: 2018942921

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Putting together this book has been more
rewarding than I could have ever imagined. It
would not have been possible without the love
and encouragement of my parents, Daniel
and Lilian, without whom I would never have
enjoyed so many opportunities. A big Thank
You to my wife, Ying for her enduring support
and bearing with me for all the late nights.
This book is dedicated to my Grandmother
who has always been there for me.
Eujin Pei
Foreword I

Technology is changing the way people live, work and do business. Digitalisation
and automation are framing our future. This creates new and exciting opportunities,
but at the same time challenges. Many of today’s jobs did not exist a decade ago.
New jobs in the future will require new skills. We need to ensure our workforce is
ready to reap the benefits of change. Because our capacity to continue driving
innovation in Europe will to a great extent be determined by how much we invest in
people and their skills.
Today, more than 30 million workers form the backbone of the manufacturing
industry in Europe. They make the world-class products that keep us ahead of other
global competitors.
Manufacturing, together with other key sectors like renewables and green
technology, has the potential to drive innovation. But in a fast-changing world, the
question of which skills are relevant, and how to anticipate these skills needs is
crucial. Without the people with right skills, they cannot reach their potential.
That’s why, in 2016, I launched a ‘Blueprint for Sectoral Cooperation on Skills’
under the new Skills Agenda for Europe. This initiative focuses on closing the skills
gaps in key economic sectors. Industry-led partnerships will map skills needs and
trends in their sector which are holding back growth. The idea is to develop new
curricula that address gaps and ways to boost development of the skills needed.
Additive manufacturing and 3-D printing is one of the 11 sectors that we have
identified to implement the Blueprint. This sector requires multidisciplinary teams
formed by people with highly diverse backgrounds and skills sets that are at the
heart of the race for global competitiveness and leadership. Additive Manufacturing
and 3D-Printing sector, one of the most disruptive advanced manufacturing tech-
nologies is expected to have an economic impact up to EUR 200–500 billion
annually in 2025.
Setting up a sustainable Erasmus + Alliance on skills development between key
industry stakeholders in the sector and education and training will be an important
step. We know from the past what difference European cooperation can make.
European cooperation brings new ideas and approaches to national reform pro-
cesses, not only at political but also at the grass-roots level. Business and industry

viii Foreword I

anyway think in terms of transnational supply chains and not in national ones.
European sectoral cooperation on skills can adjust education and training to this
reality. Growing automation of manufacturing processes will require all industry
workers to have increased technical skills. Workers will need to acquire skills in
digital techniques, computing, analytical thinking, machine ergonomics and man-
ufacturing methodologies. By educating and training our students and labour force,
we will ensure that Europe stays at the forefront of disruptive technologies.
I am pleased that CECIMO, the European Association for the additive manu-
facturing industry, is a strong ally in defending the added-value of EU-funded
initiatives on education and training issues by being actively involved in European
funded projects on entrepreneurial skills in the machine tool industry and devel-
oping vocational training and apprenticeships in 3D-Printing.
This book has built on these projects and will ensure that industrialists, pro-
fessionals, educators, trainers and researchers become aware of much needed
modern educational content and training practices to make our workforce ready for
the future.

Brussels, Belgium Marianne Thyssen

European Commissioner for Employment
Social Affairs, Skills and Labour Mobility
Foreword II

Additive Manufacturing (AM) is a technological marvel that has been attracting the
attention of many over these last few years. Often referred to in the mass media as
3D Printing, AM has in fact been around for a lot longer than most people are
aware, with the first systems becoming commercially available in the early 1990s.
Most of the general public became aware of this technology only recently as
machines became more widely available due to dramatic reductions in machine
costs combined with easy access to related technologies like 3D Computer-Aided
Design, mobile computation, 3D image capture, the Internet, etc. Because of this,
there has been huge growth in the industry and there are now hundreds of thousands
if not millions of machines in use today.
This, however, causes problems as well as solutions. The main problem asso-
ciated with this book is that many people now think they know all about AM
because they have seen machines in school classrooms or the local hardware store.
They are not aware that there are many types of machines and applications from the
very simple to the extremely complex. Furthermore, these machines can be used in
a bewildering number of areas from conventional model-making through to
replacement body parts. AM is used in $300 machines that allow you to design and
replace a broken cupboard door handle in your home through to multi-million
dollar aerospace manufacturing facilities building the jet engines of the future.
When you look at AM this way, it is quite clear that there is more to it than just
melting some plastic and creating a 3D model. People need to be made aware of this
and so it is vital to have high-quality education in this sector.
I am really pleased that this book has come out. It provides insight into how AM
can be applied to teaching and training in a number of contexts. It describes how
AM has been a part of the latest stages of the manufacturing industrial revolution
and how it has helped to form new thinking in product design and development. It
also covers a number of issues surrounding AM like research, technology transfer,
intellectual property and AM’s relationship with other technologies. It discusses
how AM technology is developing as well as how it is a tool to assist learning other
areas like design, manufacture, etc. I know nearly all the editors and authors of this
book either personally or by reputation. I believe that this book is written by the

x Foreword II

right people who have the right knowledge and experience to explain how AM can,
is and should be implemented in the classrooms, teaching laboratories, training
facilities and general maker spaces to ensure we get the fullest potential from it. It
comes out at the right time and I trust it will influence many on how to proceed
from here with AM.

Geelong, Australia Ian Gibson

Professor of Additive Manufacturing
School of Engineering, Deakin University

Additive Manufacturing (AM) is a rapidly developing technology and having

well-trained specialists are essential. A future-ready workforce requires the develop-
ment of new AM training programmes and teaching curricula that not only addresses
the employer’s needs and includes both technical and business aspects. As a result,
educational content and training guidelines need to be updated, so as to ensure that
industrialists, educators, researchers and professionals are kept relevant and aware of
current practices related to AM. As more and newer jobs around AM will be created,
there is a need to develop specific teaching and training strategies that can develop the
employability or re-skilling of professionals and workers. This book brings together the
contributions of leading experts to discuss aspects of new means of teaching, providing
training programmes to gain alternative employment pathways, the need for certifica-
tion by professional bodies and using community-oriented maker spaces to promote
awareness of AM among the society. We hope you will enjoy reading this book.

London, UK Eujin Pei

Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Spain Mario Monzón
Nantes CX 03, France Alain Bernard

Review I

David Bourell
Professor of Mechanical Engineering and Materials Science and Engineering
The University of Texas at Austin, USA
This book serves a critical need for a more advanced text that takes the reader to the
next level once the basics of additive manufacturing (AM) are understood. In this
regard, the topics covered are spot on. Overall, the text will be of great use to
academics and industrialists who desire to take second and third steps towards fully
implementing a culture of AM into manufacturing. The book is much more than
just training and education in AM. It moves well beyond this to the integration of
AM into industrial practice with practical advice on how to accomplish this. The
chapters are written by world experts in their respective areas of AM. Coverage
includes when to use AM, when to displace conventionally manufactured parts with
AM parts, and more importantly defines the criteria for making such alterations.
Standards development in AM is continuously evolving, and the opening chapter
provides a clear snapshot of the current state. Chapters “Additive Manufacturing:
Instrumental Systems Used in Research, Education, and Service” and “Introducing
the State-of-the-Art Additive Manufacturing Research in Education” will be of
great use to new academics who find themselves in an AM research environment.
Chapter “Developing an Understanding of the Cost of Additive Manufacturing”
deals with cost of AM parts. Baumers and Tuck, world experts in this area, have
done an excellent job of outlining the cost factors for AM. Chapters “Additive
Manufacturing Validation Methods, Technology Transfer Based on Case Studies”
and “Teaching Design for Additive Manufacturing Through Problem-Based
Learning” extend the value proposition of AM by considering improvements in
performance enabled by AM. Intellectual property issues are of great importance
generally, and a chapter is devoted to this topic as it applies to AM. Chapter
“FoFAM and AM-Motion Initiatives: A Strategic Framework for Additive
Manufacturing Deployment in Europe” gives an excellent overview of some
of the socio-political impacts of AM as applied to developments in the European
forefront. Chapter “The Machine Tool Industry’s Changing Skills Needs: What is

xiv Review I

the Impact of Additive Manufacturing Technologies?” is a refreshing look at an

often forgotten application area of AM: tooling. With so much emphasis on aero-
space and biomedical applications, the longstanding use of AM in tool generation is
overlooked, and most of the issues and recommendations of this chapter are broadly
applicable to the general integration of AM into existing manufacturing. Chapter
“Teaching Design for Additive Manufacturing Through Problem-Based Learning”
provides an excellent closure to the textbook by focusing on the use of AM in
design starting at the earliest stages of the design process, rather than taking an
existing part made using conventional manufacturing and porting it over to AM. In
this way, AM stands on its own merit during the part configuration stage of design,
and the impact of design freedom enabled by AM can be fully implemented.
Review II

Ian Campbell
Professor of Computer Aided Product Design and Editor-in-Chief of the Rapid
Prototyping Journal
Loughborough Design School, Loughborough University, UK
Additive manufacturing (AM) is indeed a rapidly growing discipline and there is a
current shortage of qualified personnel at every level. New courses and programmes
need to be developed to meet the needs of every level, from technician to Masters
student. The proposed book will provide valuable material for curriculum devel-
opment in that it covers a series of examples explaining how AM training and
education has been or should be implemented. Of particular value is the collabo-
rative nature of the work presented, involving education providers, industry and
government. It is essential that this ‘triple-helix’ approach is followed if AM
training and education (and therefore AM implementation) is to reach its full
potential. Also of great interest to readers will be the multi-national background
of the chapter authors. It is valuable to see the different approaches used in different
countries, as well as the different topics that need to be considered. The range of
topics covered is impressive, covering the entire value chain. Thus, the book could
be used to inform a wide-ranging Masters-level programme or very focused
industrial training courses on costing, intellectual property, or standards, for
example. Therefore, the potential market for the book is extensive, covering aca-
demic institutions, training organisations, internal training departments in compa-
nies and even government departments. It could also be a useful textbook for
students of AM at all levels.


Knowledge Transfer and Standards Needs in Additive

Manufacturing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
Mario Monzón, Rubén Paz, Zaida Ortega and Noelia Diaz
Continuing Education and Part-Time Training on Additive
Manufacturing for People in Employment—an Approach Focused
on Content-Related and Didactical Excellence . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
Christian Seidel and Raphaela Schätz
Additive Manufacturing: Instrumental Systems Used in Research,
Education, and Service . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35
Bahram Asiabanpour
Introducing the State-of-the-Art Additive Manufacturing
Research in Education . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53
Li Yang
Developing an Understanding of the Cost of Additive
Manufacturing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 67
Martin Baumers and Chris Tuck
Intellectual Property Rights and Additive Manufacturing . . . . . . . . . . . 85
Rosa Maria Ballardini
Additive Manufacturing Validation Methods, Technology
Transfer Based on Case Studies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 99
Iñigo Flores Ituarte, Niklas Kretzschmar, Sergei Chekurov, Jouni Partanen
and Jukka Tuomi
FoFAM and AM-Motion Initiatives: A Strategic Framework
for Additive Manufacturing Deployment in Europe . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 113
Paula Queipo and David Gonzalez

xviii Contents

The Machine Tool Industry’s Changing Skills Needs: What is the

Impact of Additive Manufacturing Technologies? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 127
Filip Geerts and Vincenzo Renda
Teaching Design for Additive Manufacturing Through
Problem-Based Learning . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 139
Olaf Diegel, Axel Nordin and Damien Motte
‘What is in a Word?’—The Use and Background for Terms
and Definitions in Additive Manufacturing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 151
Klas Boivie
Functional, Technical and Economical Requirements Integration
for Additive Manufacturing Design Education . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 171
Alain Bernard, Mary Kathryn Thompson, Giovanni Moroni, Tom Vaneker,
Eujin Pei and Claude Barlier
Additive Manufacturing Systems for Medical Applications:
Case Studies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 187
Henrique Amorim Almeida, Ana Filipa Costa, Carina Ramos,
Carlos Torres, Mauricio Minondo, Paulo J. Bártolo, Amanda Nunes,
Daniel Kemmoku and Jorge Vicente Lopes da Silva
Professional Training of AM at the European Level . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 211
Eurico G. Assunçao, Elvira Raquel Silva and Eujin Pei
Future Challenges in Functionally Graded Additive
Manufacturing . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 219
Eujin Pei and Giselle Hsiang Loh
Useful Information . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 229
About the Editors

Dr. Eujin Pei is the Director for the Product Design

and Product Design Engineering programmes at
Brunel University London. His research focuses on
Design for Additive Manufacturing and Applications
for Functionally Graded Additive Manufacturing. He
is the Convenor for the International Standards
Organisation Technical Committee ISO/TC261/WG4
and Chairs’ meetings related to Data Transfer and
Design for Additive Manufacture. He is Chair for the
British Standards Institute BSI/AMT/8 for Additive
Manufacturing. Eujin is also a Chartered Engineer
(CEng) and a Chartered Technological Product
Designer (CTPD). He is active in various industry and
knowledge transfer projects in the UK and across EU.
Eujin is also the Managing Editor for the Progress in
Additive Manufacturing Journal published by

Mario Monzón Professor of manufacturing processes

at University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.
Coordinator of a research group of integrated and
advanced manufacturing. Coordinator of a Ph.D. pro-
gramme in Chemical, Mechanical and Manufacturing
Engineering. Member of ISO TC261 and CEN TC438.
Founding member of the Spanish Association of Rapid
Manufacturing (ASERM). Member of the editorial
board of the Journal Bio-Design and Manufacturing

xx About the Editors

Prof. Alain Bernard 58, graduated in 82, Ph.D. in 89,

was Associate Professor, from 90 to 96 in Centrale
Paris. From September 96 to October 01, he was
Professor in CRAN, Nancy I, in the ‘Integrated Design
and Manufacturing’ team. Since October 01, he has
been Professor at Centrale Nantes and Dean for
Research from 07 to 12. He is researcher in LS2N
laboratory (UMR CNRS 6004) leading the ‘Systems
team. His research topics are KM, PLM, information
system modelling, interoperability, enterprise mod-
elling, systems performance assessment, virtual engi-
neering and additive manufacturing. He supervised
more than 30 Ph.D. students. He published more than
150 papers in refereed international journals and
books. He is Vice-President of AFPR (French
Association on Rapid Prototyping and Additive
Manufacturing), Vice-Chairman of WG5.1 of IFIP
(Global Product Development for the whole product
lifecycle) and member of CIRP Council. He coordi-
nated and coauthored two books in French in the field
of Additive manufacturing: Le prototypage rapide
(Hermès, 1998); Fabrication additive (Dunod, 2015).
Actually, he is leading an Industry 4.0 project at
Centrale Nantes and is developing a learning factory
with its digital twin.
Knowledge Transfer and Standards Needs
in Additive Manufacturing

Mario Monzón, Rubén Paz, Zaida Ortega and Noelia Diaz

1 Introduction

Although Additive Manufacturing (AM) technologies have high potential in terms

of productivity and competitiveness for companies, their diffusion is still relatively
limited among manufacturers and end users. The high cost of this equipment could be
a key reason, but there is a general agreement that there is a lack of deep knowledge
of these technologies as well as skills for implementing them in companies. Several
publications, books and journals specialized in AM (Gibson et al. 2010; Chua et al.
2010) are currently available. In addition, AM has been being recently introduced
in many university programmes by the adoption of low-cost equipment for teaching
laboratories. Some examples of this equipment are RepRap and RapMan. Both of
them use the extrusion-based method (Fused Deposition Modelling) and can build a
replicated machine following the instructions supplied and printing the parts needed
for the assembly. However, these resources are mainly addressed to scientists and
students rather than to companies that need to implement these new technologies
in reasonable time to decide if and how to adopt them. This chapter presents an
alternative view on how, starting from the development of knowledge in the context
of standards in AM, the new standards can provide a real training process taking into
account the valuable inputs from industry, academy and final users (Sect. 4). First,
Sect. 2 shows a previous view about the current progress on AM standardization
in the committees of ISO, ASTM and CEN as well as recommendations in relevant
projects carried out such as SASAM (Feenstra et al. 2014). In Sect. 3, some initiatives
and projects about learning in AM are presented, in particular, the experience of the
authors in the European project KTRM.

M. Monzón (B) · R. Paz

Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Las Palma,
e-mail: mario.monzon@ulpgc.es
Z. Ortega · N. Diaz
Department of Processes Engineering, University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Las Palma,

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019 1

E. Pei et al. (eds.), Additive Manufacturing—Developments in Training
and Education, https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-76084-1_1
2 M. Monzón et al.

2 Standardization Needs in Additive Manufacturing

Standards are technical documents that define requirements, specifications or guide-

lines to specify test procedures or quality and safety attributes of materials, products,
processes and services. The AM community and industry have been aware that
the lack of standards is an important barrier to the more general adoption of AM,
mainly in those sectors under strict rules of regulation (medical, aerospace, automo-
tive, etc.). Several factors strongly influence the limited applicability of conventional
standards to AM, being the anisotropy and the modification of mechanical proper-
ties, depending on the process parameters, the key issue to deal with (Puebla et al.
2012). Nevertheless, for the last years, several international organizations have been
working on the development of new standards for AM (ASTM F42 since 2009, ISO
TC261 since 2011 and CEN/TC 438 since 2015), with significant number of stan-
dards approved so far. Table 1 shows a summary of standards approved by these
international organizations until 2017.
It is important to note the following appointments: in a meeting held in Notting-
ham, UK, in July 2013, ISO TC261 and ASTM F42 agreed jointly to develop AM
standards. This was, without any doubt, a relevant landmark for further development
of AM standards under a common interest. In 2015, CEN created a new Technical
Committee CEN/TC 438, adopting, if possible, those standards agreed by ISO and
ASTM. The collaboration between ISO and ASTM takes place by periodic face to
face or online meetings, where groups of experts for each side discuss and develop
the new proposed standards. In Table 1 is observed those common standards in ISO,
ASTM and CEN. Another relevant highlight agreed between ISO TC261 and ASTM
F42 was the general structure of how the developed standards should be fitted. In
this structure, there are three levels and different target areas in each level (Monzon
et al. 2014). From the top to the bottom, the levels are General AM standards; Cate-
gory AM standards; Specialized AM standards. The target areas are Raw materials;
Process equipment; and Finished parts.
Several initiatives have been carried out in different countries to support the devel-
opment of standards for AM (Monzon et al. 2014), but it should be highlighted the
support action funded by the European Commission in 2014, the project SASAM
(Support Action for Standardization in Additive Manufacturing) (Feenstra et al.
2014). Among other actions in SASAM, a survey studying the standards needs of the
AM community was carried out. In this survey, a group of 122 industrially-driven
stakeholders indicated the need and type of standards to be developed. A number
of standards categories were distinguished such as design, specific industrial needs,
quality of manufactured parts, safety (regulations) and education. These needs were
summarized in the roadmap of SASAM (Feenstra et al. 2014). The roadmap is based
upon priorities (on a scale from 0 to 5) and it adopted the above-mentioned structure
agreed by ISO and ASTM. Since many of the partners of the SASAM project are
experts in either ASTM F42, ISO TC261, or CEN/TC 438, some of these recom-
mendations have been implemented in the developed standards, contributing to the
successful result of the SASAM project.
Knowledge Transfer and Standards Needs in Additive Manufacturing 3

Table 1 List of approved standards until 2017

Additive ISO 17296-2:2015 EN ISO
manufacturing—General 17296-2:2016
principles—Part 2: Overview
of process categories and
Additive ISO 17296-3:2014 EN ISO
manufacturing—General 17296-3:2016
principles—Part 3: Main
characteristics and
corresponding test methods
Additive ISO 17296-4:2014 EN ISO
manufacturing—General 17296-4:2016
principles—Part 4: Overview
of data processing
manufacturing—General 52900:2015 52900:2015 52900:2017
manufacturing—General 52901:2017 52901:2017
for purchased AM parts
Specification for additive ISO/ASTM ISO/ASTM EN ISO/ASTM
manufacturing file format 52915:2016 52915:2016 52915:2017
(AMF) Version 1.2
Standard terminology for ISO/ASTM ISO/ASTM EN ISO/ASTM
additive 52921:2013 52921:2013 52921:2016
systems and test
Standard Practice for F2971-13
Reporting Data for Test
Specimens Prepared by
Additive Manufacturing
Standard Guide for F3122-14
Evaluating Mechanical
Properties of Metal Materials
Made via Additive
Manufacturing Processes
Standard Guidelines for ISO/ASTM52910- ISO/ASTM52910-
Design for Additive 17 17
Standard Specification for F2924-14
Additive Manufacturing
Titanium-6 Aluminum-4
Vanadium with Powder Bed
4 M. Monzón et al.

Table 1 (continued)
Standard Specification for F3001-14
Additive Manufacturing
Titanium-6 Aluminum-4
Vanadium ELI (Extra Low
Interstitial) with Powder Bed
Standard Guide for F3049-14
Characterizing Properties of
Metal Powders Used for
Additive Manufacturing
Standard Specification for F3055-14a
Additive Manufacturing
Nickel Alloy (UNS N07718)
with Powder Bed Fusion
Standard Specification for F3056-14e1
Additive Manufacturing
Nickel Alloy (UNS N06625)
with Powder Bed Fusion
Standard Specification for F3091/F3091 M-14
Powder Bed Fusion of
Plastic Materials
Standard Specification for F3184-16
Additive Manufacturing
Stainless Steel Alloy (UNS
S31603) with Powder Bed
Standard Guide for Directed F3187-16
Energy Deposition of Metals

3 Training Needs and Knowledge Transfer in Additive


In the context of education, in the field of manufacturing processes, the topic of

Additive Manufacturing is still going slowly in terms of its inclusion as part of the
content of the different curricula at all academic levels, as well as at industrial training.
Other methods such as subtractive processes (milling, turning, etc.), welding, casting,
forming, etc. are very well represented in the support material for training. Many
reasons could explain this but some of them are summarized as follows: conventional
procedures have been used for decades, even centuries. The latest advance of these
traditional procedures has introduced technological innovations but always keeping
the same basic process. For instance, conventional milling machines became into
CNC milling machines, but the concept itself is the same. This allows developing
books or training content suitable to be up to date for several years, with just a
Knowledge Transfer and Standards Needs in Additive Manufacturing 5

few modifications when necessary. Since the concept of Rapid Prototyping turned
up in the 90s (first just as a method for making formal or functional prototypes),
many different patents and methods reached the market, but many others could not
be successful. This impressive number of new technologies for plastics, metals and
ceramics has had a huge capacity of evolution, being quite difficult to arrange them
under closed categories. This characteristic, together with the specific materials for
AM and the lack of methods for predicting the mechanical behaviour of AM parts,
have hindered the process of training. We are facing, without any doubt, a new concept
of manufacturing and the traditional rules for teaching manufacturing processes or
design require new methods and procedures. One important issue to take into account
is that AM for metals requires a different expertise than for example AM for plastics.
Although all AM technologies start from a similar base (3D digital data and layering
software) the process is different and the behaviour of the material is not the same.
This means that an expert in metals for AM is not necessarily an expert for plastics
and AM. Although many people think that the training process for metals and plastics
could be done on the same basis, the real need of the industry probably requires a
more specific training. Even at the same level of plastics or metals, the technologies
available in the market start with clear differences and the specialization on each
one for increasing the productivity and quality is other relevant issue to take into
consideration. Although several books have been edited (Gibson et al. 2010; Chua
et al. 2010; KTRM 2012) all of them require more updates at short term than any
other handbooks of technology. In any case, the mentioned books are focused on the
general technology, but not on specific technologies. Some road maps of AM have
highlighted the need of education in AM. For instance, the first relevant roadmap
was the one published by the University of Texas at Austin (Bourell et al. 2009),
where two recommendations were give as follows:
• To develop university courses, education materials, and curricula at both the under-
graduate and graduate levels, as well as at the technical college level.
• To develop training programmes for industry practitioners with certifications given
by professional societies or organizations.
Similar conclusions were given in the strategic research agenda of the European
sub-Platform of AM (Platform 2014), with the following main recommendations:
• Development of a series of training modules for specific AM processes.
• University and technical college courses, education materials, and curricula at
basic undergraduate and post-graduate levels.
• Training programmes for industry practitioners.
• Outreach programmes for the non-technical population.
• AM “design for manufacture” seminars.
• More education books dedicated to increase the knowledge of AM technologies.
Some projects have faced the problem of training in AM, making some surveys
about the needs of the industry and providing some recommendations. One example
is the project 3DPRISM, funded by Erasmus+ program (European Union) and led by
the University of Sheffield Advanced Manufacturing Research Centre (Project 3D
6 M. Monzón et al.

Fig. 1 Distribution of received filled questionnaires by sector

2017). This project facilitates, accelerates and supports the acquisition of leading-
edge manufacturing skills by the workforce. It should be also highlighted the Euro-
pean project Knowledge Transfer on Rapid Manufacturing (KTRM), in which the
authors of this work actively participated (KTRM 2012). The main objectives of the
KTRM project were give as follows:
• To make a survey about training needs in the AM community and industry (about
150 questionnaires responded by 15 countries, mainly from Europe).
• To edit a handbook about additive manufacturing.
• To develop an E-learning platform for training in AM.
The questionnaire had a number of questions regarding training needs: interest in
training in this field and aspects of interest in training. The teaching method was also
asked so that it could be determined if conventional or online training were preferred
and if practical lessons would be useful. Finally, companies were asked about the
benefits expected in using these technologies. Figure 1 shows the distribution of
sectors in the survey. The most relevant global results of this survey, for companies,
are presented in the following figures. In Fig. 2, it is shown the level of knowledge on
the main AM technologies, on the basis of the maximum possible knowledge. Also,
the difference between large companies and small and medium companies (SMEs)
were analysed. It can be observed that any technology has a level of knowledge
reaching 50.0%; in general terms and that knowledge on SMEs is over than twice
higher than knowledge in large companies.
The highest knowledge was observed for stereolithography, plastic SLS, 3D print-
ers, FDM and metallic SLS. As explained above, it seems that plastic technologies
are more known than metallic ones.
To take into account whether or not the availability of any technology could
influence the level of knowledge, the survey studied the availability or outsourcing
of them (Fig. 3).
The most usual technologies on companies are plastic SLS and 3D printers, fol-
lowed by stereolithography, FDM and metallic SLS. Outsourcing is over three times
higher than availability, being the most important stereolithography and plastic SLS.
It is also confirmed that plastic AM technologies are more used than metallic ones.
Knowledge Transfer and Standards Needs in Additive Manufacturing 7

Fig. 2 Knowledge of main AM technologies by size of company

Fig. 3 Availability and outsourcing of AM technologies

As most works in this field are subcontracted, the low level of knowledge on these
technologies is thus not surprising. Figure 4 shows the profiles of worker with more
needs of training in AM. Designers are the group with more needs in terms of learning
about AM.
But if the question is about the aspect to be improved by training of AM, the answer
places “design“ in the third position (Fig. 5). The general conclusions of this survey,
considering also other questions not presented in this summary, are as follows: In
general, knowledge on AM is quite low in companies; in large companies is lower than
in SMEs. Outsourcing is most usual in companies than owning these systems. SMEs
are more involved with AM technologies than large companies, as they are owner
8 M. Monzón et al.

Fig. 4 Training profiles requested

Fig. 5 Aspects to be improved by AM training

of most part of the systems and also subcontract them in larger extension. Plastic
technologies are more known than metallic ones. Stereolithography and plastic SLS
are the most used technologies.
One important result of the survey in aspects such as the methodology for training
was the interest for the E-learning method. KTRM developed an E-learning platform
based on SCORM. This platform included content from design, technologies, mate-
rials and business models. The advantages of this E-learning platform for companies
are given as follows:
• Wide volume of updated information of AM is available for students, where several
new technologies are being developed almost every year.
Knowledge Transfer and Standards Needs in Additive Manufacturing 9

• The daily activity of the company is not disturbed at all because of the high
flexibility of time and place for learning.
• The student can be in touch with teachers and experts of AM from all over the
• Availability of different tools for teacher-student communication.
• Availability of multimedia material (audio, video).
• Collaborative training with other students, being previous experiences in RM/AM
suitable to be interchanged.
• The students can be evaluated by themselves.
• Transport time and cost saving.
• Also, in the context of KTRM, a handbook was edited with the same structure
of theoretical content than the one provided in the E-learning platform (KTRM

4 How Standards Can Support Knowledge Transfer for

Additive Manufacturing

The concept of AM was not the first definition related to this advanced technology.
In the 90s, it was common to mention it as Rapid Prototyping, so, even at that time,
neither 3D printing was commonly used. In Fig. 6, it is shown the evolution of the
different terminology and how the interest of the industry moved from a general
concept of rapid prototyping to more specific aspects as shown in the bottom of the
graph. This significant change, in only two decades, has caused continuous update
of the training material in AM.
The bottom of Fig. 6 shows how as result of the evolution of the technology and
the interest of industry in different aspects, the training activities need to be focused
on specific issues or fields rather than on general topics as in the training material
developed in the past. Therefore, experts in these specific areas are required for
successful process of education and skills. As commented in Sect. 4, these levels
of categories, suitable for training, are the same to the ones agreed by ISO-ASTM
in the structure for standardization (proposed by the industry sector and approved
with high level of consensus). This is a key point because this structure is a good
starting point for establishing the content for training in all the educational levels
and industry, allowing a more effective process. International entities such as ISO,
ASTM or CEN are encouraged in spreading the standards among the industry and
academia. For example, ISO provides a repository of teaching materials, which is a
list of existing teaching materials on standardization, with details of the authors and
publishers. These materials have been divided into two groups, which are:
• Materials for primary and secondary education
• Materials for university-level education
This section presents how standards in AM could be a very relevant and valuable
source of knowledge transfer. The process of bringing together the committees ISO
10 M. Monzón et al.

Fig. 6 Evolution of the concept of AM to the final topics of interest for industry

TC261, ASTM F41 and CEN/TC 438 represents a relevant milestone because many
standards for AM are being developed with the expertise of hundreds of technicians
and engineers from all over the world. These experts are mainly part of the industry,
but academia and technological centres participate in this process as well. In ASTM
F42, there are about 400 members, and in ISO TC261 (Fig. 7), experts from 22
participating countries and seven observer countries are collaborating in the different
working groups. All the standards approved require a rigorous process of review once
they are proposed by the different working groups. For instance, considering that not
all the countries and experts actively participate in the review process, an average
rate of 20% in terms of person effort could be acceptable. This means that only
one standard, developed by a joint group ISO-ASTM, requires the direct work of
10 people and the review process is under the supervision of at least 100 experts.
In other words, there is not any other technical document, book or paper with such
a number of experts participating in the work itself and the review process. Note
that a paper in a technical journal could be elaborated by between 2 and 5 authors
and the number of reviewers is usually three. Otherwise, what makes this process of
elaborating standards so valuable is the collaboration between experts from industry,
Knowledge Transfer and Standards Needs in Additive Manufacturing 11

Fig. 7 How standards in AM can support knowledge transfer

academia, technological centres and national bodies, as part of the spearhead of the
AM technology (Fig. 7).
Standards fall into two general categories— Normative and Informative (Stan-
dards and Standardisation 2017). Normative documents are those documents that
contain requirements which must be met in order for claims of compliance with
the standard to be certified. Informative documents are those documents that do not
contain any requirements (in the case of standards published by ISO and CEN, infor-
mative documents are typically published as Technical Reports). Although Technical
reports include the most suitable content for knowledge transfer, the normative doc-
uments also can be used as a base of training because they are more specific and
are very focused on the process, materials, tests, etc., based on the experience of the
industry and responding to the real needs of the final user. An example of the devel-
oped standards until 2017, which many of them are very useful for training in AM, it
could be mentioned “Standard Guidelines for Design for Additive Manufacturing”.
This guide provides guidelines and best practices for using additive manufacturing
(AM) in product design and helps determine which design considerations can be uti-
lized in a design project. Other good examples are the future standards for designing
specific technologies (powder bed fusion, extrusion-based, etc.). Of course, there is
an important barrier for the use of these standards as training material, which is the
purchase process that is not so easy to be afforded for many companies or universities.
Nevertheless, agreements between universities or entities with the national bodies
are a way to access to these valuable documents, which could be easily downloaded
from the corresponding websites (ISO TC261 2017; ASTM F42 2017).
12 M. Monzón et al.

5 Conclusions

Training for Additive manufacturing is according to several research agendas and

roadmaps, a priority for supporting the industry in a technology that does not follow
the same rules as the traditional ones. Initiatives such as the KTRM project allows,
by responding to the needs of the AM community, supporting them by applying
innovative methods such as E-learning. The activities carried out by ISO TC261 and
ASTM F42 as well as CEN/TC 438 allow disseminating new standards with high-
quality technical documents (normative and technical reports), with the contribution
of hundreds of experts all over the world, being very useful for supporting the training
needs of the industry.


ASTM F42. Resource document. https://www.astm.org/COMMIT/SUBCOMMIT/F42.htm.

Accessed 23 August 2017
Bourell, D.L., Leu, M.C. & Rosen, D.W. (2009). Roadmap for additive manufacturing identifying
the future of freeform processing. http://wohlersassociates.com/roadmap2009.pdf. Accessed 23
August 2017.
Chua, C. K., Leong, K. F., & Lim, C. S. (2010). Rapid prototyping: principles and applications.
Singapore: World Scientific.
Feenstra, F., Boivie, K., Verquin, B., Spierings, A., Buining, H., & Schaefer, M. (2014). Road map for
additive manufacturing. Resource document. SASAM project FP7–NMP–2012-CSA-6–319167.
http://www.sasam.eu/. Accessed 23 August 2017.
Gibson, I., Rosen, D. W., & Stucker, B. (2010). Additive manufacturing technologies. New York:
ISO TC261. Resource document. https://www.iso.org/committee/629086/x/catalogue/p/1/u/0/w/0/
d/0. Accessed 23 August 2017
KTRM, (2012). A Guide to Successful Rapid Manufacturing. Shrewsbury: Smithers Rapra Tech-
nology. Lifelong Learning Programme, Project code: 2010-1-ES1-LEOO5-21195
Monzon, M. D., Ortega, Z., Martinez, A., & Ortega, F. (2014). Standardization in additive man-
ufacturing: activities carried out by international organizations and projects. The International
Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology, 76(5–8), 1111–1121.
AM Platform, (2014). Additive Manufacturing: Strategic Research Agenda. http://www.rm-
platform.com/linkdoc/AM%20SRA%20-%20February%202014.pdf. Accessed 23 August 2017.
Project 3dprism. 3d printing skills for manufacturing. Erasmus+. https://3dprism.eu/en/. Accessed
23 August 2017.
Puebla, K., Arcaute, K., Quintana, R., & Wicker, R. B. (2012). Effects on environmental condi-
tions, aging, and build orientations on the mechanical properties of ASTM type I specimens
manufactured via stereolithography. Rapid Prototyping Journal, 18, 374–388.
Standards and Standardisation. A practical guide for researchers. Resource document.
European Commission. https://ec.europa.eu/research/industrial_technologies/pdf/practical-
standardisation-guide-for-researchers_en.pdf. Accessed 23 August 2017

Mario Monzón Professor of manufacturing processes at University of Las Palmas de Gran

Canaria. Coordinator of a research group of integrated and advanced manufacturing. Coordina-
Knowledge Transfer and Standards Needs in Additive Manufacturing 13

tor of a PhD program in Chemical, Mechanical and Manufacturing Engineering. Member of ISO
TC261 and CEN TC438. Founding member of the Spanish Association of Rapid Manufacturing
(ASERM). Member of the editorial board of the Journal Bio-Design and Manufacturing (Else-

Rubén Paz Lecturer of manufacturing processes at University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.
Researcher in the group of integrated and advanced manufacturing. His main field of research is
additive manufacturing, 4D printing, optimization of AM parts and polymer processing.

Zaida Ortega Lecturer of Chemical engineer at University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.
Researcher in the group of integrated and advanced manufacturing. Member of the editorial board
of the Journal Bio-Design and Manufacturing (Elsevier). Her main field of research is polymer
processing, natural fibre composite and biofabrication.

Noelia Diaz Lecturer of Chemical engineer at University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria.
Researcher in the group of integrated and advanced manufacturing. Her main field of research is
Rapid tooling, polymer processing and natural fibre composite.

External Resources: ADDIMAT is the Spanish Association of Additive Manufacturing Technolo-

gies https://www.addimat.es.
AENOR is the Spanish National Body for Standardization http://www.aenor.es.
Continuing Education and Part-Time
Training on Additive Manufacturing for
People in Employment—an Approach
Focused on Content-Related and
Didactical Excellence

Christian Seidel and Raphaela Schätz

1 Background

Additive manufacturing technologies (AM) have gained significance as production

technologies during the last years. According to Wohlers Report as of 2017 (Wohlers
Report 2017) total additive manufacturing market volume has exceeded the 6 billion
US$ mark in the year 2016. As a result, total market volume has increased sixfold
within 7 years, referred to 1 billion US$ in the year 2009. Several institutions pro-
vide forecasts for the additive manufacturing market growth. A summary is provided
in Fig. 1. Based on Fig. 1, a compound annual growth rate of 31% until the year
2020 appears to be the most probable forecast for the development of the total addi-
tive manufacturing market volume, because this equals the average of all forecasts
provided in Fig. 1.
Originally, the only field of application for AM was the time-efficient production
of prototypes—also known as Rapid Prototyping. During the last 5 years, a signifi-
cant increase in applications for direct part production can be observed, especially in
Aerospace industry, Medical industry and in General Engineering (Wohlers Report
2017). This extension in application from prototyping to manufacturing is crucial
to realize the forecasted growth rates provided in Fig. 1, because prototyping does
often not require the production of more than one or ten parts. However, for realizing
a compound annual growth rate of 31%, it is necessary to identify and exploit busi-
ness cases within small- and medium-scale series. As a result, machine and material
sales will increase and additive manufacturing technologies will further establish as
production technologies. Today, skilled workers are, alongside some technological
challenges, such as process robustness, etc., a bottleneck for this development. So,

C. Seidel (B)
Fraunhofer IGCV, Beim Glaspalast 5, 86153 Augsburg, Germany
e-mail: christian.seidel@igcv.fraunhofer.de
R. Schätz
Fraunhofer Academy, Hansastraße 27c, 80686 Munich, Germany

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019 15

E. Pei et al. (eds.), Additive Manufacturing—Developments in Training
and Education, https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-76084-1_2
16 C. Seidel and R. Schätz

61 %


Average: CAGR = 31 %


10% 8%


CAGR = Compound annual growth rate CAGR CAGR max.

Fig. 1 Total market growth forecasts provided by different institutions

“Professionals“ Machine operator Engineer Management

Apprenticing University Provider

“Next generation“ company (e.g. to for continuing
(e.g. to become education and
become a an Engineer) part-time training
machine operator)

Fig. 2 Puzzle of skills and relevant institutions needed for further growth in additive manufacturing

there is a need for specialists in, e.g. design (Computer-Aided Design) and dimen-
sioning (Computer-Aided Engineering) for additive manufacturing, process devel-
opment, quality assurance but also for skilled workers to, e.g. operate the machines.
Figure 2 illustrates a puzzle of skills and institutions needed to enable strong future
growth in additive manufacturing with a focus on personnel.
Today, challenges in terms of skilled labour exist on two different levels: On
the one hand, there is a lack of professionals on all qualification levels, such as
machine operator, engineer incl. designers or management. This is because today’s
professionals typically have not had additive manufacturing covered during their
education. On the other hand, the education of our ‘next generation’ professionals is
a challenge because for example setting up a new curriculum for a university degree
Continuing Education and Part-Time Training on Additive … 17

does take a lot of time and effort. Consequently, it can happen even today that a recent
graduate engineer has hardly had any lectures on additive manufacturing. For this
reason, there is a need to set up new curriculums that consider additive manufacturing
on all qualification levels (school, apprenticeship, universities, etc.) so that our ‘next
generation’ work force is knowledgeable about additive manufacturing. Obviously,
this will take several years to be in place. For immediate assistance, continuing
education can be seen as key enabler to meet the current demand for skilled employees
in additive manufacturing.
Continuing education or further education is the generic term for post-secondary
learning activities and programs for adults. In Germany, there is a more specific
term called quaternary education. It comprises all learning activities after the first
education phase, which includes school education and university or a first qualifying
professional training. In the context of this chapter, the focus is on a specific aspect
of continuing vocational education: part-time training after a first professional qual-
ification, what is defined in the following paragraph. Part-time training comprises
courses that professionals can join alongside their regular job in order to support
lifelong learning and development on the job. The learners are already working with
a company and sign up for extra classes to boost their skills in a specific field. In this
context, part-time trainings are typically 0.5- to 4-day programs but can be combined
to form a whole certifiable program, such as a Master of Engineering for additive
manufacturing. The general advantage of part-time training is more flexibility for the
participants to combine learning activities with their professional and family obli-
gations. The employer has also the benefit that employees have briefer absences on
their job.
In summary, continuing education can contribute, in synergetic coexistence with
AM conferences, forums etc., to an economic sustainable growth and application of
AM in industry. However, one should clarify any dependencies of the provider of
continuing education before joining a program in order to enjoy a comprehensive
and unbiased learning experience. Summarizing, two main drivers for the exceptional
relevance of continuing education for AM can be derived:
• Strong demand for experts in AM
A shortage of AM experts on the labour market can be observed which can hardly be
met by, e.g. university graduates as AM has, most of the time, not been represented
in their curriculum, see explanations above. Consequently, continuing education is
a powerful tool for, e.g. mechanical engineers focused on production technology
to develop further. Obviously, this is not only true for university graduates but also
transferable on apprenticeship, etc.
• Rapid and manifold progress in AM technologies
AM industry is highly dynamic which leads to a significant amount of new knowl-
edge and relevant progress every year, month, or even day. Hence, continuing
education and part-time training on AM for people in employment can be crucial
to keep up-to-date reducing the need to provide cost-intensive capacity for internal
forces to operate, e.g. a technology radar.
18 C. Seidel and R. Schätz

2 Fundamentals of Part-Time Training in Continuing


2.1 Relevance of Continuing Education for Today’s Industry

Recent analyses of the job market show a rising lack of qualified personnel. Technical
jobs are particularly affected (Bundesagentur für Arbeit 2017). The time of vacancy
increased from 90 to 100 days in the last year. The rising need for qualified employ-
ees is also visible in other European countries (Cedefop 2011). This is caused among
others by the demographic change, a positively improving economic situation, and
technological innovations. Especially, small and medium-sized companies are con-
cerned by the lack of qualified personnel, because they are often not well versed
in employer branding compared to big companies. One important approach to meet
the need of qualified employees is continuing education. The results of the adult
education survey confirm that the participation increases at continuing vocational
training in the European average between 2007 and 2011 with 6 percentage points
(Cedefop 2015) and in Germany between 1991 and 2014 with 14 percentage points
(BMBF 2015). That is a clear hint for the increasing relevance of continuing educa-
tion. Employers have a measurement against the rising lack of qualified employees
by training their own workforce and they are able to strengthen their innovativeness.
Furthermore, companies will get more attractive in the ‘war for talents’, if they offer
their personnel opportunities for continuing education. Workers have the opportunity
to secure their employability over their lifespan and they are enabled to make the
next step in their career with learning and qualification.
Summarizing the arguments above, there is no discussion that continuing educa-
tion is important and contains benefits for all parts involved. The question is whether
all goals and demands connected with continuing education for professionals can be
reached. Different authors claim that only 10% of training content can be transferred
into practice and most of the trainings are bad investments (Ford et al. 2011; Gris
2008). The taught knowledge often stays inert and cannot be applied in the profes-
sional context. Following (Renkl et al. 1996), these phenomena of inert knowledge
can be explained by three different reasons: The acquired knowledge has not an
appropriate structure to put it into practice (structure deficit). The relevant knowl-
edge is acquired in a suitable structure, but it cannot be transferred into practice
because of accessibility problems (metaprocess deficit). The acquired knowledge is
situated and connected to the learning situation. To apply knowledge it is necessary
that the learning situation is quite similar to the application situation (situated cog-
nition). Following these basic assumptions about practicable knowledge, learning
settings and continuing education need to follow certain requirements to reach their
goals. These requirements are explained in the next paragraph.
Continuing Education and Part-Time Training on Additive … 19

2.2 General Requirements of the Learning Psychology for

Part-Time Training in Continuing Education

Against a background of part-time training and knowledge transfer in a job-related

context, the learning psychology provides a relevant theoretical approach about learn-
ing and the design of learning environments: a moderate constructivist view of learn-
ing (Gerstenmaier and Mandl 2001). The moderate constructivist view of learning
defines learning as process, in which the learner receives information and constructs
his/her own knowledge based on his/her experiences, previous knowledge, emotional
and motivational situation. Knowledge is not transportable from one person to the
other. Knowledge has to be constructed by the learner individually (Mandl 2010).
Furthermore, the learning process is characterized by six different aspects:
• Active process: Learning is only possible with an active learner, who needs a min-
imum of motivation. Furthermore, cognitive activities but also motored operations
are necessary by doing exercises or tasks.
• Constructive process: Knowledge has to be integrated in available cognitive struc-
tures and prior knowledge. Existing experiences help to interpret and evaluate the
new content.
• Self-regulated process: Parts of the learning process need the engagement of the
learner him-/herself to organize and monitor the own activities.
• Emotional process: The learning process is influenced by emotions. Especially
performance-orientated emotions (i.e. exam nerves) and social emotions (i.e.
proud) are relevant. To foster learning processes, positive emotions have to be
strengthened and negative emotions have to be avoided.
• Social process: Knowledge acquisition always takes place in a social context with
interaction between several persons. Besides facts and contents, attitudes and val-
ues are negotiated.
• Situated process: Knowledge is always connected to a specific situation. If you
learn, the acquired knowledge will be linked with the context.
To facilitate such an ideal learning process, which takes all various aspects men-
tioned above into account, it is necessary to design a learning environment with a bal-
ance between construction and instruction (Reinmann and Mandl 2006). Traditional
learning environments emphasize the role of the teacher as instructor, who teaches
the relevant knowledge. S/he has the most active part in the learning setting and
passes on the content to the learners by explanations, instructions and presentations.
The learners are first of all in a receiving role and less active. A learning environment
oriented on the moderate constructivist view pays attention to the balance between
construction by the learners and instruction by the teacher (see Fig. 3). Induced by
a problem-based approach, the learners have an active role. They construct their
knowledge in a social group; they are emotionally involved and act self-regulated.
The teacher is more reactive by supporting, coaching, counselling and encouraging
the learners. S/he has the task to switch between reactive and active parts depending
on the situation and learning phase.
20 C. Seidel and R. Schätz

Learning as active, self-regulated, constructive, situated,
emotional and social process.
Change between active and receiving learner‘s

Problem-based Learning

Teaching as supporting, coaching, counselling, encouraging
and explaining, instructing, presenting.
Change between reactive and active teacher‘s

Fig. 3 Balance between construction and instruction (based on Reinmann and Mandl 2006)

To design such a problem-based learning environment which facilitates a balance

between construction and instruction four aspects have to be noticed:
• Authentic context: Ideal learning environments are authentic situations, in which
the learner needs new knowledge and skills to master the situation. In order to
design such situations real problems, cases and simulations of authentic situations
should be used. The authentic context creates relevance for the learner, motivates,
generates interest and produces relevance to practical application. Consequently,
it is one important factor for successful knowledge transfer since the learning
situation is quite similar to the application situation at the job.
• Multiple contexts: As knowledge is acquired in a specific situation, it is also linked
to the situation in its cognitive representation (Renkl et al. 1996). To get flexible
and more general available knowledge, it has to be put into multiple contexts. The
learner should get the opportunity to use and practice his/her knowledge in different
situations. Taking different perspectives into account supports the acquisition of
flexible and applicable knowledge, too.
• Social context: Although learning looks like an individual process, social aspects
are really relevant. Knowledge acquisition happens in interaction between several
persons. Learning environments should enable collaboration and problem solving
in groups. The contact to experts and a community is an important aspect, too.
• Instructional context: Besides authenticity, multiple contexts and social inter-
actions, teacher’s instruction and support are also significant. The instructional
context should be adaptive to the learner’s needs to support him/her mastering
authentic problems in multiple contexts with other learners. Learning environ-
Continuing Education and Part-Time Training on Additive … 21

ments without suitable construction are threatened to fail because of overtaxing

and a missing structure.
A meta-analysis of 43 empirical studies shows robust effects from problem-based
learning environments on learners’ skills and their practical knowledge (Dochy et al.
2003). That endorses the theoretical assumptions about knowledge transfer men-
tioned above. In summary, the balance between construction and instruction with
problem-based learning settings enables the application of knowledge to job-related
contexts. Further results confirm that learners acquire a smaller amount of knowledge
in problem-based learning environments in comparison to traditional settings. But
the sustainability and the applicability are higher (Dochy et al. 2003). An additional
factor is the learners’ previous knowledge. The more the learners know before the
more they profit from problem-based learning scenarios. Consequently, the learners’
preconditions have to be taken into account. For beginners, the instructional con-
text should predominate. The authentic context can be realized with examples and
realistic cases to provide more details and starting points for learners.

2.3 Design of a Part-Time Training in Continuing Education

Taking the theoretical and empirical considerations above into account several
aspects for designing a part-time training is relevant. First of all, the input of the
training has to be analysed. In the context of training conception input means the
target group or the potential learners and their preconditions. Relevant questions to
investigate the input are related to previous knowledge and experience with the topic,
motives to participate, former learning experiences, demographical characteristics
and job-related context. Second, the output of the training has to be defined. The
output can be described with learning goals or competences the participants acquire
(Bloom and Krathwohl 1956). Learning goals give an important orientation during
the design process. They describe, what participants should know, understand and
can apply in different fields, for example, cognitive and motor goals. Bringing input
and output together, the produced gap determines the content of the training. Tak-
ing the concept of part-time trainings into account, the challenge is to structure and
reduce the content suitable to digestible snacks. The selection and arrangement of
content use different heuristics. Following the idea of brief part-time trainings with
content-related excellence, the horizontal reduction is a relevant heuristic by focusing
on one topic and neglect familiar topics.
22 C. Seidel and R. Schätz

3 Fraunhofer’s Modular Network Approach for

Continuing Education and Part-Time Training in the
Field of Additive Manufacturing

3.1 Introducing Fraunhofer IGCV and Fraunhofer Academy

Fraunhofer IGCV, Fraunhofer Research Institution for Casting, Composite and Pro-
cessing Technology IGCV, is a production-focused research institution with head-
quarter in Augsburg and an additional location in Garching (both Munich Area,
Southern Germany). Fraunhofer IGCV has a strong focus on additive manufacturing
and conducts research on both direct processes, such as laser-based powder bed fusion
of metals, Directed Energy Deposition—processes or extrusion-based processing of
fibre-reinforced plastics, and indirect processes, such as binder jetting-based printing
of moulds and cores for sand casting. In its so-called ‘AMLab’ (cf. www.amlab.de),
a joint laboratory between Fraunhofer IGCV and the Institute for machine tools and
industrial management of the Technical University of Munich, one of Germany’s
largest additive manufacturing machine parks has been available for wide-ranged
research on additive manufacturing since more than 20 years.
Fraunhofer Academy is the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft’s specialist provider of con-
tinuing education and part-time training for people in employment. The Fraunhofer
Academy offers specialists and managers several courses of study, certificate courses
and seminars based on the research activities of the Fraunhofer institutes in col-
laboration with selected and prestigious partner universities (https://www.academy.
fraunhofer.de/en.html). In October 2016, Fraunhofer IGCV and Fraunhofer Academy
decided to join forces in order to set up a modular framework for part-time training
and continuing education in additive manufacturing.

3.2 Modular Framework for Continuing Education and

Part-Time Training Within Fraunhofer Gesellschaft
Under the Umbrella of Fraunhofer Academy

According to DIN EN ISO/ASTM 52900:2017-06, seven process categories for addi-

tive manufacturing exist today, Fig. 4.
They exhibit significant differences in terms of their technological principle to
generate parts. Within each process category, several processes are available on the
market. Processes described in VDI-guideline 3405 (2014), such as polymer-focused
laser-sintering, or metal-focused laser or electron beam melting are all part of process
category ‘Powder Bed Fusion’. Hence, it can be concluded that additive manufactur-
ing covers a wide range of different technologies to generate parts out of polymers,
metals, ceramics, paper, concrete, etc. via different technological principles (e.g.
melting, chemical bonding). For that reason, a modular approach for part-time train-
Continuing Education and Part-Time Training on Additive … 23

Extrusion Material Jetting Binder Jetting Sheet Lamination

Directed Energy
Vat Polymerization Powder Bed Fusion

Fig. 4 Seven process categories for Additive manufacturing following DIN EN ISO/ASTM

ing and continuing education exhibits two core advantages: Participants can choose
courses that have a focus on their relevant topics. For instance, if one were interested
in metal processing technologies, a comprehensive course, which covers technologies
for ceramic, polymer and metal processing, would not be a perfect fit. In contrast,
a course on all metal processing technologies out of the seven process categories
might be a perfect fit. Through modularization, the institution responsible for certain
modules can have in-depth practical experience in the technology or topic covered
by the course. For a certain combination of modules, knowledgeable institutions can
join forces in order to ensure best possible quality of the offered continuing educa-
tion. For that reasons, Fraunhofer IGCV developed a modular network approach for
continuing education for additive manufacturing as shown in Fig. 5.
The ‘Input’-element covers an analysis of participants’ existing skills and field of
work needed to enter the modular network. If there is no prior knowledge on additive
manufacturing, a participant should enter the network by joining the ‘Basic module’,
which covers fundamentals of additive manufacturing. The ‘Basic module’ will be
explained in more detail below. If there is sufficient prior knowledge, a participant can
directly join one or more of the ‘In-depth modules’. The ‘Output’-element highlights
the importance of having SMART (specific, measurable, accepted, reasonable, time-
bound) learning objectives for every course module and path through the network.
So far, three modules have been developed: First, the ‘Basic module’ which covers
fundamentals of additive manufacturing and is provided by Fraunhofer IGCV in
Augsburg, second an in-depth module on laser beam melting, which is also provided
by Fraunhofer IGCV, and third an in-depth module on electron beam melting, which
24 C. Seidel and R. Schätz

Basic module

In-depth modules
Laser beam melting

Input Electron beam melting
Possible extension 1
Possible extension 2
Possible extension n

Paths through the network

Elements within the network
Part-time trainings (already available) within element
“in-depth modules”
Future part-time trainings on not yet specified topics
within element “in-depth modules”

Fig. 5 Fraunhofer’s modular network approach on courses for additive manufacturing

is provided by Fraunhofer IFAM in Dresden. According to the definitions provided

in the section above, the current focus of the developed network is to provide high-
quality part-time training. For this reason, the content of the three modules is free
of overlap and follows a similar and by Fraunhofer Academy approved structure.
As a result, participants can join every module and will thereby continuously add
new knowledge in the field of AM. The objective for the years 2018 and 2019 is
to integrate more Fraunhofer Institutes and possibly excellent universities into the
network illustrated in Fig. 5 to be able to provide more part-time trainings within
element ‘In-depth modules’. In collaboration with designated certification bodies
and universities, it will then be possible to issue both certificates such as an ‘Additive
Manufacturing Specialist’ on design, metal/polymer/ceramic processing, etc. and
Master degrees on additive manufacturing.

3.3 Developed Modules

Within this section, the general idea of the developed part-time trainings is presented.
On the one hand, the set-up of the ‘Basic module’ will be described, on the other hand,
the common set-up of both the laser and electron beam melting part-time training
will be presented. An example for an input–output chart for part-time trainings is
shown in Fig. 6. This chart has been developed for the ‘Basic module’.
Continuing Education and Part-Time Training on Additive … 25

Basic module

Education: Overview on available technologies, processes and current

Participant holds an university degree on a (partly) trends
technical subject (at least Bachelor degree) or equivalent Hands-on experience with a selected additive manufacturing
Participant has been foremen or equivalent in the relevant
subject for more than 3 years. Knowledge on terminology to be able to categorize and pre-
Department affiliation: evaluate upcoming trends
Overview on existing business models
Production Overview on standardization activities and legal issues

Business Development and innovation Understanding process chains with additive manufacturing
Management (with a technical focus)

Overall objective of course module:

Participants will be enabled to establish a team within their company that is able to systematically identify company-specific potentials for
additive manufacturing and to derive corresponding exploitation plans.

Fig. 6 Brief input–output chart for the ‘Basic module’ on additive manufacturing

To participate in the part-time training ‘Basic module’, learners shall have a spe-
cific education, which means they should hold a university degree on a, at least partly,
technical subject. Alternatively, participants should have been foremen or equivalent
in the production environment for more than 3 years. Hence, a technological basic
knowledge of the learners is guaranteed. As the content of the ‘Basic module’ is cho-
sen very broad, learners active in development, production, business development
and innovation, as well as technically focused management can participate in this
course, given that the educational prerequisites are fulfilled. The overall objective
of the part-time training ‘Basic module’ is to enable participants to establish a team
within their company that is able to systematically identify company-specific poten-
tials for additive manufacturing and to derive corresponding exploitation plans. To

In-depth modules

Laser / Electron beam melting

Education: Understanding of the technological principle

Participant holds an university degree on a (partly) Machine setup
technical subject (at least Master degree) or equivalent Available machines on the market
Participant holds a Bachelor degree (on at least a partly Specific technological details (beam-material
technical subject) or has been foremen in production interaction etc.)
environment for more than 3 years AND has participated Basic knowledge on materials and material science
in the “Basic module” Commercially available materials
Department affiliation: How to qualify the process for new materials
Knowledge on possible applications
Business models
Product development
Case studies
Dimensioning Understanding of potentials and limitations
Production planning Design rules
Production development Post processing

Overall objective of course module:

Participants will be enabled to optimize the technology, which is in scope of the part-time training (either laser or electron beam melting) in
terms of technological targets, such as achievable surface roughness, minimal wall thicknesses etc.

Fig. 7 Brief input–output chart for the ‘In-depth modules’ on laser/electron beam melting
26 C. Seidel and R. Schätz

achieve this overall objective after a 2-day part-time training, the output as described
in Fig. 6 needs to be achieved.
Figure 6 gives an overview on the input–output chart for the ‘in-depth modules’ on
laser or alternatively electron beam melting. As there is a certain similarity amongst
this two powder bed fusion technologies, a similar set-up was foreseen for the two-day
part-time training. As described in Fig. 7, learners who want to join this ‘in-depth
modules’ need to fulfil more demanding requirements in terms of their education
level compared to the ‘Basic module’. Also, required department affiliations are
more precise compared to the ‘Basic module’. This is necessary to reach the overall
objective that participants shall be enabled to optimize the technology, which is in
scope of the part-time training (either laser or electron beam melting) in terms of,
e.g. achievable surface roughness, minimal wall thicknesses etc.
Besides input–output charts, which are supposed to give a brief overview on what
is going on in each element of the modular network (Fig. 5) more detailed class
schedules need to be developed in order to maximize the quality of the part-time
trainings. Within these class schedules, it shall be specified:
• What is the market-driven motivation to set-up this part-time training?
What are the objectives in terms of cognitive, affective or hands-on skills?
• What are the prerequisites for participation? (This question is basically sufficiently
answered with the input section of an input–output chart.)
• What is the qualification needed for the teachers?
• What are the boundary conditions of the part-time training and how does the overall
concept look like?
• Duration
• Proportion of theory and practice

Table 1 Objectives of Fraunhofer IGCVs ‘Basic module’

Content First day Second day
Cognitive • understanding of terminology used • understanding the main challenges
within AM industry/‘being able to along the process chain
communicate!’ • being familiar with tools for
• knowledge on relevant AM processes implementing AM in the company of
and their underlying technological the learner
principle • sensitivity and awareness for the main
• basic knowledge on functionally challenges when implementing AM
driven design • knowledge on available standards and
current discussions on legal issues
Affective • creating fascination for AM • Creating the spirit to implement AM
in the company of the learner
• Willingness to be further educated in
AM, e.g. through joining one of the
in-depth modules
Motoric • creating a simplified bionic part • removal of support structures
design (structures only needed for the
Continuing Education and Part-Time Training on Additive … 27

Table 2 Class schedule of the first day of the ‘Basic module’, including didactical methods applied
Start End Title Didactical methods Description (AM: Additive
09:00 09:45 Hands-on 1.1 Guided dialog • start of the training and
presentation of class schedules
for the two days
• Roll call of participants and
collection of expectations from
the training
• Demonstration of AM-use
09:45 10:45 Theory 1.1, Lecture, group work • history of AM in a nutshell
Hands-on 1.2 and classification within
production technologies
• collecting general
characteristics of AM (group
• general characteristics and
AM-terminology (lecture)
10:45 11:15 Coffee
11:15 12:00 Theory 1.2 Lecture, including • overview on process
switch from presentation categories following
to flip chart terminology standards (e.g. EN
ISO/ASTM 52900) and
guidelines (e.g. VDI 3405:
• introducing process categories
‘Extrusion’ and ‘Material
Jetting’ as well as
corresponding commercially
available processes
12:00 13:00 Lunch
13:00 13:45 Hands-on 1.3 Lecture, practical work, lightweight design for AM
demonstration • introduction by the teacher
• problem-based learning of
lightweight design by
designing a bottle opener,
whereas every learner creates
his/her own design
• discussion and analysis of
13:45 15:00 Theory 1.3 Lecture, guided dialog • introducing process categories
‘Binder Jetting’, ‘Sheet
Lamination’, ‘Vat
Polymerization’, ‘Powder Bed
Fusion’ and ‘Material Jetting’
as well as corresponding
commercially available
28 C. Seidel and R. Schätz

Table 2 (continued)
Start End Title Didactical methods Description (AM: Additive
15:00 15:30 Coffee
15:30 16:00 Theory 1.4 Lecture • introducing process categories
‘Directed energy deposition’ as
well as corresponding
commercially available
• summary on introduced
processes as
16:00 17:00 Hands-on 1.4 Demonstration ‘AM live’
• preprocessing for a build job
for personalized lightweight
bottle openers (cf. Hands-on
• safety instructions before
entering the laboratory
• start of the build job (in this
module, machine set-up is done
by the teachers)

• Actions before the part-time training, such as app-based preparation of learners

• Actions after the part-time training, such as control of learning progress by means
of regular tests during the first 6 months after the completion of the part-time
• What is the theoretical and practical content of the part-time training?
Following Table 1 gives an overview on the objectives, which were defined for
Fraunhofer IGCVs ‘Basic module’.
Tables 2 and 3 give an overview on the timetable developed for the first and second
day of the ‘Basic module’. Tables 2 and 3 do also include didactical methods, which
are defined in the following for clarification reasons:
• Demonstration: something is demonstrated by the teacher, such as how to prepare
an additive manufacturing machine for a build job.
• Discussion: a certain topic is discussed within the group; the teacher can be part
of the discussion or only the moderator.
• Group work: teams of, e.g. three participants are formed to solve a given problem.
The teams should not remain the same for all group works.
• Guided dialog: in contrast to a lecture, slides are presented by utilizing questions,
such as ‘Why is this aspect important and therefore mentioned on this slide?’.
Obviously, slides need to be prepared in a way that this didactical method can be
• Lecture: giving a presentation to inform about a certain topic.
Continuing Education and Part-Time Training on Additive … 29

Table 3 Class schedule of the second day of the ‘Basic module’, including didactical methods
Start End Title Didactical methods Description (AM: Additive
08:00 08:15 Hands-on 2.1 Demonstration • start of the day directly at the
laboratory in order to
experience what was built
08:15 09:00 Hands-on 2.2 group work first test of learn progress
• group work on AM processes
• group 1: Prepare a 10 min
presentation on available
polymer processing
AM-processes as described
during day 1
• group 2: same task, but for
metal processing AM-processes
09:00 10:00 Theory 2.1 Lecture, guided dialog • process chains for additive
• analysis of two exemplary
process chains from aerospace
and medical industry, guided
dialog on the relevance of each
element within the process
10:00 10:30 Hands-on 2.3 Demonstration, single experience on post-processes
work • removal of support structures
from the build job on
personalized bottle openers
• exemplary manual deburring
(note: built bottle openers serve
as give away for the
10:30 11:00 Coffee
11:00 12:00 Theory 2.2 Lecture • systematic presentation of use
cases from selected industries
• AM-Business model
12:00 13:00 Lunch
13:00 13:45 Hands-on 2.4 Group work Implementing AM
• group work: identify the three
most important aspects for
implementing AM in your
• common categorization of
group results, moderated by the
30 C. Seidel and R. Schätz

Table 3 (continued)
Start End Title Didactical methods Description (AM: Additive
13:45 14:45 Theory 2.3 Lecture • Fraunhofer
IGCV-implementation model
• overview on legal aspects,
standardization activities and
health issues
14:45 15:00 Coffee
15:00 16:00 Hands-on 2.5 Group work second test of learn progress:
• business game (groups of e.g.
three learners): prepare a 5 min
pitch on how to implement AM
in your company
16:00 16:30 Closure Discussion • questions and answers
• feedback

• Practical work: something is created by the learners.

• Single work: each participant has to solve the same problem on his/her own.
It is obvious from Tables 2 and 3 that both training days start with a hands-on
activity. This is recommendable to ‘awake’ learners and highlight that they are a
crucial part of the event. On the first day, all AM processes are introduced to the
learners, which means a significant amount of information. This is both tough and
relevant. However, in order not to give a 3-h lecture on AM-processes in a row,
a lightweight design hands-on training was foreseen to interrupt this set following
the principles of learning psychology described in Sect. 2.2. In general, by utilizing
varying didactical methods, the attention of the learners can be kept on a high level.
By foreseeing test for the learn progress during the training, teachers get feedback,
which content should be repeated and to which extent. Also, these tests do help
learners to independently repeat the content and to put it into a new context by
themselves. More details and most recent information on the modules are available:

Fig. 8 Results of pilot evaluation

Continuing Education and Part-Time Training on Additive … 31

So far, in total 5 runs with the three developed part-time training modules have
been performed. Overall, 16 person have been educated (1 run ‘Basic module’, 3 runs
‘In-depth—laser beam melting’, 1 run ‘In-depth—electron beam melting’) resulting
in an average evaluation of 4.6 points, whereas 5 is the upper end (excellent) and
1 (very poor) the lower end of the applied range. For the pilot evaluation, a more
detailed feedback from the four participants (n  4) was collected which is shown
in Fig. 8. It can be concluded that both the didactical design and the content received
very good grades. The didactical design including the idea of problem-based learning
could be put into practice very well and the participants estimated it as suitable. The
output was estimated above average by the participants themselves immediately after
the training.
It is assumed that the weaker results for the output are caused by a heterogeneous
prior knowledge of the participants. Possibly, learners with a more profound pre-
knowledge rated the output rather average. Therefore, a pre-knowledge-test should
be done beforehand to prove this assumption. Measurements to handle heterogeneous
prior knowledge, what is quite common in continuing education, are identified in the
following fields:
• Try to find out as much as possible about prior knowledge on AM of the participants
and their special interests in the field of AM before the part-time training takes
place. This can be done by providing an online questionnaire before the event.
Expectations should be collected, too. If a questionnaire is not possible before the
training, at least the participants’ expectations and experiences should be collected
at the beginning of the training. The trainer can carry out a fine tuning concerning
content by integrating suitable examples or by shifting priorities between topics.
• Prepare extra modules on certain topics as a back-up in order to be responsive if
participants want to also learn about something, which is not completely included
in your course material. Foresee time slots in your timetable for these extra topics.
The training concept should be flexible for adjustments.
• Group work is a suitable didactical method to handle heterogeneous prior knowl-
edge. Two scenarios are possible: Groups with different knowledge and expe-
riences work together, therefore the participants learn from each other and the
principle of multiple perspectives is realized (see Sect. 2.2). In the second sce-
nario, groups are built with similar knowledge and experience. Then the groups
can work on different tasks related to their skills.
Besides a Continual Improvement Process, further investigations could focus
on the knowledge transfer into job-related contexts. This could provide evidence
for more improvements of the didactical design and also the content. Additionally,
insights would be collected for future developments in the field of AM and the need
for training.
32 C. Seidel and R. Schätz


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Continuing Education and Part-Time Training on Additive … 33

Dr.-Ing. Christian Seidel is Head of Main Department Strategy and Head of Additive Manufac-
turing at Fraunhofer IGCV. Beforehand, he was Head of Department at Fraunhofer IGCV for 4
years. He holds a Ph.D. from Technical University of Munich for his research on powder bed
fusion additive manufacturing technologies. He is head of national (VDI—German Association of
Engineers FA105.6) and international committees on Additive Manufacturing (ISO TC261/AG1,
ISO TC 261/ASTM F42/JG57), editor at Springer Journal Progress in Additive Manufacturing and
guest lecturer at the University of Applied Science in Augsburg.

Dr. Raphaela Schätz is responsible for the topics didactics, teaching and quality manage-
ment at the Fraunhofer Academy. Beforehand, she worked as research associate at the Ludwig-
Maximilian-University of Munich (LMU) in the institute for empirical education and educational
psychology. Her research interests are learning and teaching in authentic and virtual learning envi-
ronments as well as effects and transfer of learning processes.

External Resources: Fraunhofer Research Institution for Casting, Composite and Processing Tech-
nology IGCV http://www.igcv.fraunhofer.de.
Additive Manufacturing at Fraunhofer Academy - The Fraunhofer Academy is the Fraunhofer-
Gesellschaft’s specialist provider of continuing education and part-time training for people in
employment. The Fraunhofer Academy offers specialists and managers outstanding courses of
study, certificate courses and seminars based on the research activities of the Fraunhofer insti-
tutes in collaboration with selected and prestigious partner universities. http://www.academy.
Additive Manufacturing: Instrumental
Systems Used in Research, Education,
and Service

Bahram Asiabanpour

1 Introduction

1.1 AM’s Technological Advancements and Affordability

Additive Manufacturing (AM) applications, and consequently AM education has

become a necessity for a variety of reasons, including AM’s technological advance-
ments and affordability, competition in the global manufacturing of products, and
AM’s positive role as an instrumental tool to use for different learning styles. AM,
also known as 3D printing and freeform fabrication, is “A process of joining materials
to make objects from 3D model data, usually layer upon layer, as opposed to sub-
tractive manufacturing methodologies.” (ASTM 2900). Many AM processes, such
as direct metal laser sintering (DMLS), fused deposition modeling (FDM), selective
laser sintering (SLS), stereolithography apparatus (SLA), and 3D printing, have been
developed in the past 30 years and are now commercially available. All commercial
AM processes have at least one limitation in terms of materials choice, process speed,
cost, part size, or accuracy as well as having final parts with low mechanical prop-
erties (e.g., porous body, brittle, low strength, etc.) (Hayasi and Asiabanpour 2013).
In a panel that discussed the future of additive manufacturing at the 25th anniversary
of the Solid Freeform Fabrication (SFF) Symposium in 2014 in Austin, TX, most of
the participating experts agreed that future additive manufacturing systems should
address functional metallic/multi-material and large-scale parts, utilize multiple pro-
cesses, and allow built-in components in any part/system. Obviously low equipment
and operating cost, speed, and energy efficiency are among the desired features of
such systems. In addition to the technological advancements and better quality of the

B. Asiabanpour (B)
Ingram School of Engineering, Texas State University,
601 University Drive, San Marcos, TX 78666, USA
e-mail: ba13@txstate.edu

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019 35

E. Pei et al. (eds.), Additive Manufacturing—Developments in Training
and Education, https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-76084-1_3
36 B. Asiabanpour

AM processes, the discussion panel forecasted that AM machines will generally be

more affordable due to higher production volume and expiring patents (SFF 2014).

1.2 The Response to Global Competition

Engineering is vital to the future economic growth of the U.S. and the world. The glob-
alization of the business environment, however, demands that engineers be equipped
with new sets of skills. Some of the key characteristics that U.S. engineers should
have are the ability to solve problems that account for “complex interrelationships”
and “encompass human and environmental factors” (National Science Foundation
publication 2007). Additionally, engineers are needed more than ever in the U.S.
because (1) industrial processes are becoming increasingly complex and require
more operators with high technical skills; (2) the need for research and development
in materials and instruments demands engineers with advanced skills; (3) different
socio-environmental factors such as an aging population, produce the need for more
medical devices and equipment; (4) environmental issues and additional regulations
need more specialists to maintain a safe and clean environment; (5) the growing
need for energy demands more research and development to new alternative energy
sources; and (6) the growth of the population and an aging infrastructure requires
more development in variety of areas, including transportation, utilities, and commu-
nication further contributing to the need for more engineers in many different fields
(The Perryman Group Report 2007). According to a report from the national innova-
tion initiative summit, Innovate America, “innovation will be the single most impor-
tant factor in determining America’s success throughout the twenty-first century.”
(SME 1997) These two studies support previous findings of the Society of Manu-
facturing Engineers (SME) entitled “Manufacturing Engineering for the twenty-first
Century” (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology 2002) and the cri-
teria set by the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET). The
SME study identified communication skills, teamwork, project management, busi-
ness skills, and lifelong learning as some of the key competency gaps found in recent
graduates of engineering programs. The ABET criteria (Wohlers 2014) maintain that
“students must be prepared for engineering practice through the curriculum culmi-
nating in a major design experience based on the knowledge and skills acquired in
earlier course work and incorporating engineering standards and realistic constraints
that include most of the following considerations: economic, environmental, sus-
tainability, manufacturability, ethical, health and safety, social, and political.” The
Wohlers report (2014) has forecast that the global market size for 3D printing indus-
try will reach over $21 billion by year 2020 (Mohr and Khan 2015). Sebastian Mohr
and Omera Khan summarized the variety of benefits and the impacts of the AM on
global production and the supply chain (Salsman et al. 2013) (Table 1).
Additive Manufacturing: Instrumental Systems … 37

Table 1 The impacts of 3D printing on supply chains and supply chain management (Salsman
et al. 2013)
Impact Category
Mass customization Customer co-creation Maker movement;
Prosumers; Democratization of design;
Markets-of-one Postponement
Changing view on resources Circular economy; Higher material/resource
efficiency; Sustainability attitude
Decentralization of manufacturing Reducing assembly steps; Reducing parts and
SKUs; Reducing the supplier base; New design
Rationalization of stock and logistics Print-on-demand; Shipping designs, not
products; Digital inventory; Change of
inventory mix
Changing value-adding activities New sources of profit; New cost base;
Changing capital requirements; Collaborative
manufacturing; 3D printing services
Disruptive competition Reduced barriers to entry; Niche markets;
Producer  investor  founder; Printing away
from control

1.3 Undergraduate Student Recruitment and Retention

in the STEM Field

AM education has become ever more important, as many industries are now utilizing
it as a mainstream technology in their efforts and expect their employees to be skill-
ful or at least familiar with the relevant AM technologies. Additionally, there have
been many research efforts that indicate that many students from kindergarten to the
undergraduate level (K-16) are either reluctant or uncomfortable with STEM topics
and may drop them from their education if these students are not appropriately and
guided. According to the National Science Board, one of the key challenges in engi-
neering education is to overcome the inaccurate perceptions of engineering found
among high school students and their parents and even their teachers. Surveys show
that the general public is not fully aware of the engineering role in “improving health,
the quality of life, and the environment.” (National Science Foundation publication
2007) This inaccurate public belief has resulted in the current stereotype that sug-
gests only those students who are good at math and science and like working with
objects rather than people enter engineering programs and those who like teamwork
and finding solutions for social problems are alienated from entering engineering
programs. “As a result, many students, especially women and minorities, cannot see
themselves as engineers.” (National Science Foundation publication 2007) Addi-
tionally, the statistics show that women and minority groups do have higher dropout
rates in engineering. The main causes of their abandoning engineering programs have
been poor performance in “their first math courses,” “lack of role models,” and “per-
38 B. Asiabanpour

ceptions of a too competitive and uncaring environment”. According to this report

“retention of engineering students is a systemic problem that begins long before col-
lege.” (National Science Foundation publication 2007) Both perception and prepa-
ration play an influential role in these recruitment challenges and later the attrition
rates in many engineering programs. Undergraduate research has been shown to be
an effective learning practice and retention tool through delivering such benefits as
knowledge base development, professional development, and strengthening of col-
legial efforts. Research by Salsman, N., et al. (Langley-Tumbaugh et al. 2014) shows
that a student’s total hours working on research projects and the total time spent on
the undergraduate research projects by a research mentor/faculty does significantly
and positively correlate with perceived benefits that are recognized by students. They
suggested that there be “heavy duty” involvement of students in the research process
(Todd et al. 2015). The benefits of undergraduate research involvement for students
with a disability (Prunuske et al. 2013; Stapleton et al. 2010) and underrepresented
groups in STEM have been also reported (Carter 2011; Davis and Clark 2014). Early
Undergraduate Research has been implemented and reported on by different institu-
tions as well. Alma College, under a five-year NSF-STEP grant, offered a summer
research program to first-year students to allow them to work in science research
labs across the STEM disciplines. Upper-class students served as peer mentors in
each of these research labs. This program produced an increase in the number of sci-
ence majors; further, students participating in the program were retained at a higher
rate than their peers; and participants had improved academic performance (Gibson
et al. 2010). AM, as a relatively safe and low-cost technology, has been identified
as a learning, recruiting, and retaining tool for those students enrolled in different
Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) and non-STEM fields
as well as K-16 levels. This chapter discusses and reports on a set of activities related
to education, research, and service, including specific examples from Texas State
University, in response to the key challenges raised by SME, ABET, NSF, and the
Innovative America summits and are being implemented at the university level.

2 Additive Manufacturing Education at the Undergraduate


2.1 Additive Manufacturing as a Stand-Alone Course

In response to research and industry demand, the manufacturing engineering curricu-

lum at Texas State University introduced an elective course for senior year under-
graduate students. The course is open to engineering graduate students and includes
additional tasks and assignments.
Additive Manufacturing: Instrumental Systems … 39

Table 2 Specific Outcomes • Students will discuss the applications of Additive

of Instruction for the AM Manufacturing for a variety of fields including engineering,
course medical, and biomedical engineering
• Students will demonstrate and discuss a variety of Additive
Manufacturing technologies
• Students will explain different aspects of software and tool
paths for different Additive Manufacturing technologies
• Students will use multiple Additive Manufacturing software
• Student will apply selected Additive Manufacturing
machines to produce parts
• Students will select the appropriate Additive Manufacturing
process by considering technical requirements of the work and
the financial aspects of the chosen process

Table 3 AM course cover • Introduction and basic principles of additive manufacturing,

topics freeform fabrication, and rapid prototyping
• Development of additive manufacturing technology
• The generalized additive manufacturing process chain
• Photopolymerization processes
• Powder bed fusion processes
• Extrusion-based systems
• Printing processes
• Sheet lamination processes
• Beam deposition processes
• Design for successful additive manufacturing
• Mass customization and personalization
• Rapid product development

2.1.1 Outcomes and Topics

Because the education of AM topics is new and the AM field itself may cover many
different aspects, no established curriculum was readily available. Therefore, at first,
just a set of expected outcomes was defined (see Table 2). Then, utilizing the available
literature, a detailed list of topics was developed (Table 3). The textbook chosen for
this course was Additive Manufacturing Technologies Gibson, I., Rosen, D., Stucker,
B. (2015), as it reflects recent developments and trends of the AM in considerable
detail (SME 2017). Additionally, SME’s Additive Manufacturing Certificate Program
Body Of Knowledge (Anderson et al. 2001), Wohler’s report (Mohr and Khan 2015),
and the personal research and development of several instructors in the field were
included as lecture topics (Tables 2 and 3).
40 B. Asiabanpour

Fig. 1 Examples of the AM course projects: a an typical designs of experiments and tests and b
an exploratory test on new ideas

2.1.2 Class Activities and Assessments

The AM class is organized as a three-hour class with one hour of lab activities.
Additionally, two field trips, including one small business start-up and one large
advanced metal AM center visit are as part of the class. Assessment of the class
included quizzes (10%) and homework (15%) related to the topic covered in the
previous week, a midterm (20%), and a final exam (30%) as well as a project (20%)
and class active participation (5%). Since the AM field is continuously changing and
improving, projects were utilized to offer the latest tools, software, and processes to
the class. As a result, these projects were very flexible and included a literature review
of new techniques/technologies not covered in the lectures (e.g., flexible electronics),
experimental/optimization projects using currently available processes, or testing of
preliminary ideas for future research. Students were assigned to teams based on their
technical interests and schedules (Fig. 1).
The lab activities, depending on machine availability and running status could
include the Fused Deposition Machine (FDM)/Uprint, Laminated Object Manu-
facturing (LOM), the ZCorp 3D printer model Z450, InVision LD 3D modeler by
3DSystem, Solid Scape Wax printer, and Form2 SLA; software related to each pro-
cess, safety training, and basic material experiments. Additionally, to make the class
more usable for the full diverse group of students with different learning styles, the
lectures and PowerPoint slides were organized in Bloom’s Taxonomy (Van Roekel
Additive Manufacturing: Instrumental Systems … 41

2008) and Universal Design for Learning (UDL), a research-based framework that
facilitates the design of instruction for diverse learners (3D printers and 3D printing
of news 2017). In this method, four categories of learning styles were considered
including 1. Sensorial (sight, sound, and physical sensations oriented toward facts
and procedures) versus Intuitive (memories, ideas, and insights oriented toward the-
ories and meanings); 2. Visual (pictures, diagrams, graphs, demonstrations) versus
Verbal (material presented orally or in written, textual form); 3. Active (engaging in
physical activity or discussions, trying things out) versus Reflective (thinking things
through); and 4. Sequential (linear, following logical progression, learning in small
incremental steps), versus Global (holistic, learning in large leaps).

2.2 Additive Manufacturing Education in the Context of

Other Courses

AM is no longer being seen as an apparatus, which by pushing a button, becomes

ready to use the final product. Instead, in its many applications, it is seen as one of
many available manufacturing processes. The application of AM for the 3Fs (Form,
Fit, and Function) has become part of the ordinary tools available for both industry
use and education sectors. Some AM processes are capable of only demonstrating the
shape and general purpose of a design (Form). Certain more accurate AM processes
can fabricate components to the tolerances required for assembly purpose tests (Fit).
More advanced AM machines with improved material properties can also fabricate
the parts that actually are doing the work (Function). The applications of AM have
become widespread. Since many fields may not have enough resources or relevancy
to utilize AM, they may not need a full-fledged AM course. Instead, they may adopt
a course module or simply chapter on relevant AM topics. There is a wide range of
fields, courses, and grade levels, however, that can benefit from AM processes. 3D
printers and 3D printing news websites have demonstrated different examples of AM
use in these classrooms (Asiabanpour and Sriraman 2006):
Biology Cross sections of hearts or other organs
Chemistry Molecules to study
Auto Replacement or modified car parts
Cooking Designing intricate molds or for ices and gelatins
Engineering Prototypes of their ideas
Architecture 3D models of designs
History Historic artifacts
Graphic Design Artworks
In line with the need for 3D printed parts in the context of 3Fs for different
manufacturing tasks in engineering courses at Texas State University and not all
students are able to take an AM elective course, several course modules or projects
have been made available to students. These students can then participate in AM
activities and acquire enough knowledge and hands-on experience to be able to work
42 B. Asiabanpour

Fig. 2 Routine AM topics and activities utilized in the Tool Design class

with a variety of AM systems. Using this approach, AM is taught as part of the

broader concept of product and process development. Students will have access to
both Additive Manufacturing and newly developed Makerspace labs to complete
their assignments and projects. Two major classes that offer AM course modules and
training are Tool Design and Concurrent Process Engineering (a capstone class). In
Tool Design class (Asiabanpour and Sriraman 2005), routine topics, including an
overview of AM processes, certain AM software (e.g., ZEdit and ZPrint), and a few
hands-on AM processes for special tooling (e.g., a model for a rubber mold) are
covered (Fig. 2).

2.3 Additive Manufacturing in Capstone Design Course

The capstone senior design class is a semester-long (16 weeks) in which a team of
3–4 students complete their project on a real-world industry or research problem.
In the class, students start their project with a need and a description for a specific
application. They, then, follow a procedure to finalize their work. Major steps include
team building and project management, identifying customer needs, innovation and
Additive Manufacturing: Instrumental Systems … 43

Fig. 3 Examples of AM applications in senior design projects: a NASA Mars core sampling system
project; b Centrifugal force mechanism; c Light holder designing and fabrication, d Luminaire
designing and fabrication, e Battery terminal cap prototyping followed by metallic mold design and
fabrication, and f Keychain design, fabrication, and casting
44 B. Asiabanpour

Fig. 4 Additive manufacturing process development as part of a senior design project: Heat element
status for the Selective Inhibition of the Sintering AM process

creativity, defining product specifications and quality function deployment (QFD),

concept generation, concept selection, design, design for X (manufacturing, assem-
bly, safety, etc.), robust design and design of needed experiments (DOE), additive
manufacturing and rapid tooling, manufacturing, assembly, testing, failure mode and
its effects analysis (FMEA), and a business plan (Asiabanpour 2015; Asiabanpour
et al. 2008). AM is taught in this capstone class as part of the product and develop-
ment process. The students become familiar with the AM concept and AM equipment
using a hands-on approach. Then, they apply their knowledge of AM and other pro-
cesses to their own capstone projects. Figure 3 illustrates some of the products that
have utilized these AM processes for completing a project.
Additionally, in senior design projects, some students conduct their research on
new developments for additive manufacturing processes as well. These projects
usually include design, manufacturing, and experiments on (Asiabanpour et al.
2007a, b; Asiabanpour et al. 2004, 2014; Asiabanpour and Hayasi 2013) (Fig. 4).

3 Research Activities on Additive Manufacturing

3.1 Research on Developing an Additive Manufacturing


The research activities leading to the development or improving the performance of

a system require a variety of interrelated investigation and development processes.
As an example, in this section, activities toward the development of the SIS are
discussed in three segments (Asiabanpour et al. 2003a, b; Asiabanpour et al. 2004,
2006, 2009; Asiabanpour and Khoshnevis 2004; Khoshnevis et al. 2002, 2003): Ana-
lytical research, experimental research and developmental research (Fig. 5). These
categories of activities are not independent of each other. Simultaneous theoretical
study, experimental research, and software development and modification are con-
ducted. After an analysis of each experiment, a new set of experiments, new machine
Additive Manufacturing: Instrumental Systems … 45

Fig. 5 General research and development activities for AM processes

and software modifications, or a new theoretical subject study are proposed and pur-
sued. During developmental research, the machine path and hatch path generation of
algorithms are designed and implemented based on the SIS process requirement for
the fabricated alpha machine. In the experimental research, many 2.5D and 3D parts
are successfully fabricated. Numerous experiments are also conducted to find the
appropriate polymer and inhibitor for the SIS process. To determine the analytical
research direction, a goal hierarchy plot was applied. There are different goal levels
in that goal hierarchy plot.

3.1.1 Developmental Research

Hardware: An Alpha machine was designed and constructed to study the SIS concept.
This machine included hardware, electronics, control, and user interface components
(Fig. 6).
Software: Every rapid prototyping system has its own specifications. The part
boundary form, the part filling method, and part separation from the surrounding
material determine the machine (NC) path pattern for every layer. For the SIS process,
the machine path and hatch path generation algorithms have been designed and
implemented based on the SIS process requirement for the fabricated Alpha machine.
46 B. Asiabanpour

Fig. 6 SIS Alpha machine

Fig. 7 Dedicated software development for the SIS AM process

The designed algorithm enables the system to generate an appropriate machine path
file using a solid model file in the STL format with no limitation as to model size or
complexity (see Fig. 7).
Additive Manufacturing: Instrumental Systems … 47

Fig. 8 Experiments and the fabrications of their parts

3.1.2 Experimental Research

In all experimental research, many material experiments and part fabrications are
undertaken. For the SIS process, these include experiments with machine parame-
ter variation (e.g., heater temperature, layer thickness, and printer feed rate), post-
processing material variation (e.g., adhesive and wax), and variation of process steps
(e.g., bulk sintering). Primary settings for factors in the conducted experiments at
this stage were assigned using the one-factor-at-a-time method (Fig. 8).

3.1.3 Analytical Research

To design the analytical research direction, after developing the goal hierarchy,
response surface methodology (RSM) was used to understand the several factors’
affecting the objectives (accuracy, strength, and surface quality). In the SIS pro-

Fig. 9 Different stages of reverse engineering, CAD file improvement, AM, and face reconstruction
needed to identify the person
48 B. Asiabanpour

cess, since multiple objectives were important, the desirability function method was
applied to optimize the process (Palmer et al. 2006; Asiabanpour et al. 2008).

3.2 Utilizing Additive Manufacturing for Applied Research

Over the years, in many collaborative efforts with experts from other fields, AM
processes have been utilized to serve research in different academic, industrial, and
service sectors. The application generally fits under the 3Fs concept (Form, Fit,
and Function). Figure 9 illustrates one of these collaborative works with a forensic
anthropologist in the research to identify an unidentified skull (Asiabanpour and
Wilson 2011; PCAST (President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology)

4 Service and Outreach

In the last ten years, fewer students are choosing to pursue STEM
careers. This is particularly true for U.S. students coming from underrepre-
sented minority groups (http://www.whitehouse.gov/sites/default/files/microsites/
ostp/pcast-engage-to-excel-final_2-25-12.pdf). Too many students and parents now
believe that STEM subjects are too difficult, boring, or exclusionary (PCAST 2010).
In addition, although college-age Hispanics and African-American students are
increasing as a percentage of the U.S. population, their participation rates in STEM
fields remain significantly low (Sanders 2004). To address the ongoing issue of
recruitment and retention of students (especially female and minority students) dif-

Fig. 10 Applying AM and other engineering tools in week-long engineering camps for K-12 stu-
Additive Manufacturing: Instrumental Systems … 49

ferent novel outreach approaches have been designed and implemented for middle
school and high school students to familiarize them with engineering functions and
engineering methods. Through this approach, students participate in a seven-day
research camp and learn different engineering skills and tools, such as CAD solid
modeling, finite element analysis, additive manufacturing, mechanical tests, team
working, and communication skills using the project-based concept (e.g., a bridge
design research project). Survey results at the end of the program showed a good
understanding of engineering skills and its functions as well as high degree of sat-
isfaction among the participants (Sanders 2004; Asiabanpour et al. 2010; Gourgey
et al. 2010; Asiabanpour 2010) (Fig. 10).

5 Conclusion

The chapter presented the process of educating AM as a stand-alone course and as

a process included in an engineering course. Additionally, it provided a variety of
examples where AM has been utilized in research and as a service tool. The trend
shows that applications of AM will grow, and it will become an ordinary tool of daily
life. It is obvious that parallel to these research advancements educational expansions
and daily use of AM that the safety and ethical aspects of these processes should also
be taken seriously.


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Dr. Bahram Asiabanpour is an Associate Professor of Manufacturing Engineering and a Certi-

fied Manufacturing Engineer (CMfgE). He has served at Texas State since 2003 and is the direc-
tor of the Rapid Product and Process Development (RPD) lab. Dr. Asiabanpour is PI or CoPI
of 30 external grants. He is the author of more than 80 journal and conference papers and has
coauthored with more than 50 students. He has taught 20 different undergraduate and graduate
courses at Texas State. He is the editor in chief of the International Journal of Rapid Manufactur-
ing (IJRapidM).

External Resources: Rapid Product and Process Development (RPD) Center at Texas State Univer-
sity–San Marcos is engaged in research and educational activities in design, development, automa-
tion and analysis of functional products, processes, tools and systems in diverse sizes, from micro
scale to several yards, in a short period of time. The research effort is focused on functionality and
customization based on the customer’s needs. Development of mechanical and electromechanical
systems for industry are of special interest at this center. http://rpd.engineering.txstate.edu.
Introducing the State-of-the-Art Additive
Manufacturing Research in Education

Li Yang

1 Introduction

First introduced in the late 1980s, the Additive Manufacturing (AM) technologies
have evolved into a large group of manufacturing technologies that are radically
changing the horizon of the manufacturing industries via transformative capabili-
ties in accommodating high levels of design complexity, design customization and
production flexibility (Gibson et al. 2015). Over the past decade, AM has grown
by over 50 times in terms of market size and has maintained a growth rate of over
18% in the past 4 years (Wohler’s Report 2016). Meanwhile, the applications of
AM have also significantly expanded from predominantly prototyping, tooling, and
fixtures to many other functional components in high value-added industries such as
biomedicine, aerospace, automobile, electronics, and energy (Wohler’s Report 2016).
In many of these functional applications, the most sought-after capabilities of AM
is the enabling of Design for Functionality (DFF), which focuses on maximizing the
functions and performance of the structures with minimum resource consumptions
(e.g., materials, production time, defect rate, etc.). This, in turn, requires that the users
of the AM technologies are fully informed of the design capabilities and constraints
introduced by AM. However, it is also broadly perceived that such knowledge base is
currently not well established (Gao et al. 2015; Seifi et al. 2017). Currently, the exist-
ing knowledge with AM is still heavily empirical, especially in the areas of process
development, manufacturability, and design optimization (Lewandowski and Seifi
2016). In many application areas, specific knowledge and expertise that are based on
individual products or specific material and process combinations usually lack gen-
erality. Although the research and development of AM have gradually shifted toward
more systematic investigation of the process physics in recent years, a coherent the-
ory structure for many AM technologies remains an open challenge. Furthermore, the

L. Yang (B)
Department of Industrial Engineering, University of Louisville, Louisville, KY 40292, USA
e-mail: li.yang.1@louisville.edu

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019 53

E. Pei et al. (eds.), Additive Manufacturing—Developments in Training
and Education, https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-76084-1_4
54 L. Yang

rapid evolution of the AM technologies aggravates this issue by constantly pushing

the boundaries of the existing knowledge. For example, the recent development of the
printing technologies for the fiber-reinforced composite materials has significantly
disrupted the traditional view that AM lacks capability with this type of materials
(Matsuzaki et al. 2016; Tian et al. 2016). Similarly, the observation that the inert gas
flow is a dominant factor in the occurrence of the spatter phenomenon in laser-based
powder bed fusion processes, which contradicts with the traditional perception that
this is driven mostly by the keyhole recoil pressure (Ly et al. 2017).
With these challenges, effective AM education and training using the traditional
lecture-based learning is difficult. On one hand, a considerable percentage of the
knowledge space exists in the ever-evolving horizon, which necessitates the con-
stant update of lecture contents and the presentation of the state-of-the-art research
in related areas. On the other hand, many of the newly generated knowledge are
presented in fragmented scientific publications, which lacks systematic structures or
even consistency and require extensive literature research. Such obstacle can be over-
come by multiple measures. For example, the lecturer can perform literature research
periodically and keep the contents updated and structured, or that the lecturers can
prompt the students to perform such literature research as part of the learning experi-
ences. The use of literature review as a learning tool has been reported previously in
AM education (Stucker 2008), and in the author’s teaching practices similar approach
has been taken for the introduction of AM concepts and state-of-the-art applications,
which will be introduced in more detail in this chapter.
As AM is still under intense development, there still exist many open questions
and challenges that likely call upon continuous investigations. For example, in the
investigations about the AM process quality benchmarking, despite various proposals
about the benchmark artifact designs, there is still a general lack of consensus with the
intended purposes and the effectiveness of these designs (Moylan et al. 2012; Yang
and Anam 2014). Consequently, when such knowledge aspects are covered in the
education processes, it becomes necessary to present them as open subjects. This not
only makes the students aware of these contemporary issues but also encourages them
to consider the problems from different perspectives. The exposure to these subjects,
in turn, ensures that the next-generation workforce for AM can continue to dedicate
to these critical issues and eventually provide solutions to them. There exist various
pedagogical methods that facilities the critical thinking and active learning of specific
subjects, such as debate-based learning (Oros 2007), project-based learning (Bell
2010), group discussion (MacKnight 2000), and problem-based learning (Tiwari et al.
2006). Among these methods, the project-based learning can be effectively utilized
to also implement hands-on learning with AM processes, which is a critical part of
the AM education since many of the required skills for AM professions are closely
related to the manufacturing operations. The project-based learning is commonly
employed in AM education in many educational institutes in order to implement
hands-on exercises, however, in most cases, the learning objectives focus on the
comprehension of the freeform fabrication design concept enabled by AM layer-
wise processes. Further development of teaching strategies are needed to effectively
combine the existing strategies with the unique challenges of the AM education. In
Introducing the State-of-the-Art Additive … 55

this chapter, some attempts in utilizing the project-based learning for the introduction
of open questions of AM technologies are described in an effort to inspire future
works in developing AM teaching methodologies.

2 Literature Review-Based Learning

The literature review-based learning was employed in an introductory AM course

in the Department of Industrial Engineering at University of Louisville. The basic
concept of this method was previously described in detail (Stucker 2008). The course
consists of three components: the lectures, the student presentation, and a semester
project paper. Literature review-based learning was employed as a major tool for the
self-guided learning of specific subjects related to the AM technologies and their
applications. The two parts of the semester project are elaborated in more detail
• Presentation: the students will give a 30–45 min presentation about the selected
subject of literature review. The format and style of the presentation are generally
unrestricted. However, the students were required to prepare the presentation as a
“lecture”, which will be consequently considered as the materials for the test.
• Paper: the students will submit the literature review papers toward the end of
the semester (about week 11–12), which will be reviewed and commented. The
reviewed papers will be returned to the students for revisions, which mimics the
journal article review process. The final version of the paper will be submitted at
the end of the semester (about week 15 or 16).
At the beginning of the semester, the students were provided with the detailed
instructions of the literature review project in order to encourage early preparations.
A sample list of subject was provided as reference, which is partially shown in Table 1.
The subjects ranging from AM applications (e.g., AM applications in dentistry) to
specific state-of-the-art AM technology development (e.g., 4D printing) and some
contemporary issues related to AM (e.g., AM cybersecurity). The students were
encouraged to combine their personal or other research interests with the literature
review and choose their own subjects. On the other hand, the students were required
to submit a preliminary outline for the literature review sub-topics within two weeks
of their initial subject identification in order to receive feedback regarding the scope
of the works. This is because that the scopes of some of the subjects (e.g., AM in
aerospace applications) could potentially be too broad and must be refined to fit into
the scope of semester projects. The students work in groups of 2–3 members and
proceed with the finalized subject afterward.
During the first half of the course, lectures were given for specific AM technologies
following the ASTM F2792 standards, which include material extrusion, vat pho-
topolymerization, powder bed fusion, material jetting, binder jetting, directed energy
deposition, and sheet lamination (ASTM 2012). In addition, direct write technolo-
gies were also introduced as a separate category in order to give the students some
56 L. Yang

Table 1 Sample subjects for AM literature review project

Subjects about AM applications AM in medical applications such as bone
implants, surgical planning, dentistry, external
prosthetics, and tissue engineering
AM in soft and hard tooling
AM in foundry applications
AM in aerospace applications
AM in energy applications
AM in architecture and construction
AM in food industries
Subjects about new AM technologies 4D printing
Organ printing/bioprinting
Multi-material or functionally graded material
Finishing technologies for AM
Subjects about contemporary AM issues AM supply chain issues
AM cybersecurity

perspectives about the multidisciplinary AM systems. These lectures were expected

to provide the students with fundamental understanding of the AM technologies that
would allow them to perform more informed literature review works. Various aspects
about general AM technologies, such as process physics, material compatibilities,
advantages and disadvantages in practice, and current application areas are intro-
duced in the lectures. The contents of these lectures must be reviewed and updated
by the lecturer every time the course is offered in order to ensure most up-to-date
During the second half of the semester, each student group would give the lecture
presentation about the subject they chose for literature review. Due to the setup of
such assignment as a “lecture”, the students must ensure that the technical details are
presented in clear and coherent ways. In addition, the presenters would be asked to
also emphasize on the interactions with the audiences as well as the Q and A sessions,
which was found to often significantly improve the engagement levels of student
audiences for better learning outcomes. The lecturer would use the matrix listed in
Table 2 for the evaluation of the presentations and determine whether the presented
themes and information would be adopted for test questions. It is important that the
students are aware of such process so that they would dedicate more considerations
about the communication aspects with their presentations. Furthermore, such peer
learning approach aims to achieve multiple objectives besides the communication of
specific knowledge, including collaborative work, critical enquiry, communication,
and articulation of knowledge, self-management and self-assessment, which are also
critical skill for many contemporary engineering working environments (Boud et al.
Introducing the State-of-the-Art Additive … 57

Table 2 Grading criteria for the literature review presentation

Organization and content (20%) (Graded by individual)
Individual presentation organization/flow (good 1 2 3 4 5
intro, transition flow)
Use of visual aids (demonstrations, graphics, etc.) 1 2 3 4 5
Use of time (fit naturally within 14–16 min) 2 4 6 8 10
Presence (15%) (Graded by individual)
Physical appearance (Adequate for lecture) 1 2 3 4 5
Posture, gesture, movement, eye contact 1 2 3 4 5
Enthusiasm, enunciation, clarify (no monotone, 1 2 3 4 5
not too quiet)
Delivery and grammar (25%) (Graded by individual)
Knowledge of materials and terminology 2 4 6 8 10
(evidence of depth of knowledge)
Overall effectiveness of delivery method (ability 2 4 6 8 10
to connect with audience)
Freedom from distracting “Uh”s, etc. (no nervous 1 2 3 4 5
words or motions)
Overall (Graded by group)
Clear thesis statement and purpose (what is the 1 2 3 4 5
main point?)
Adequate support of thesis (how did you back up 1 2 3 4 5
the main point?)
Overall material flow and organization (easy to 2 4 6 8 10
follow, logical, smooth transitions)
Definite conclusions (summarize main points) 1 2 3 4 5
Overall completeness of topic coverage (any gaps 2 4 6 8 10
in coverage?)
Q&A session-knowledge of topic 1 2 3 4 5

For the literature review paper, the students were required to follow the author’s
guidance of popular AM journals such as Progress in Additive Manufacturing
(Springer International Publishing AG, ISSN 2363-9512), Rapid Prototyping Journal
(Emerald Publishing Limited, ISSN 1355-2546), Additive Manufacturing (Elsevier,
ISSN 2214-8604) and 3D Printing and Additive Manufacturing (Mary Ann Libert
Inc, ISSN 2329-7662). Each group would be required to include at least 20 journal
publications, 10 conference proceeding publications, and 5 industrial articles (e.g.,
trade articles, company press articles) as the citation for their papers. As it was recog-
nized that many students might not have adequate background for literature search,
a lecture session was dedicated to the introduction of scientific publication database
searching. Various literature search tools including Google Scholar, ScienceDirect,
conference proceeding archives and article references were introduced to the stu-
58 L. Yang

Table 3 Grading rubric for Draft/final paper completed and submitted on-time 15%
literature review
Good abstract and keywords 5%
Followed formatting rules/appearance 5%
Appropriate use of references 5%
Appropriate use of figures 5%
Grammar and spelling 5%
Effective use of case studies/examples 10%
Effective thesis/support/conclusions 10%
Flow of paper/organization 15%
Completeness of content 25%

dents. The students would also have the options of actually submitting their papers
to the journals if the subjects are deemed appropriate. On the other hand, regardless
of whether these papers are eventually submitted as real journal manuscripts, the
students would have the opportunities to enhance not only the understanding of the
specific subjects but also various other skills, including technical writing, structured
thinking, engineering problem identification, and critical thinking. A sample grading
rubric is shown in Table 3, which aims to provide the students with some guidelines
about the paper writing. In Table 3, the technical review contents only consists of
25% of the grades. This is because that many of the technical content issues would
be addressed in the initial review feedback. For literature review, the organization of
materials and the structure of the paper are also of critical importance, and therefore
are also emphasized (15% grade). The use of literature review-based learning was
welcomed by the students, and many reported that they not only gained in-depth
understanding of the AM technologies but also became more proficient with techni-
cal writing. Due to the broad range of subject selection, the students could usually
identify ones that are of most interest to them, and therefore exhibit high level of
motivation and engagement throughout the project. Some of the frontier subjects
such as 4D printing and organ printing are constantly of interests to many students,
which would give not only the review group but also the entire class the opportunity
of in-depth learning of the subjects.

3 Project-Based Learning

Various open questions in the AM research and development fields can be potentially
developed into project-based learning materials. In the development of these projects,
additional factors that should also be considered include the hardware capability of
the educational facility, scope of project and the estimated time consumption. For
example, for subjects related to the metal powder bed fusion AM process princi-
ples, the lecturer must make decisions such as whether to set up hands-on experi-
Introducing the State-of-the-Art Additive … 59

Table 4 Hands-on project for project-based learning

Lab sequence Lab project theme Description
1 Using AM for product realization Students would realize a product
design with geometrical
accuracy/strength requirements, such
as a medical syringe or phone
2 AM Geometric benchmarking A geometric benchmark part design
designed by students would be
fabricated using various AM
processes. The geometrical
characteristics of each processes
would be evaluated and compared
3 FDM process-property evaluation Students perform experimental
designs for FDM system in order to
evaluate the effect of process
parameters (temperature, scan speed,
part orientation, part size, etc.) on
mechanical properties of the
4 Geometrical design evaluation for Cellular structures with various unit
cellular structure cell designs will be fabricated and
tested in order to compare their
5 Design efficiency of lightweight Comparing the topology optimization
structure design and the unit cell design and
evaluate their efficiency and

ments using the often expensive equipment or computationally costly finite element
simulation-based studies. In addition, many of these open research questions would
likely require additional refinement by the lecturer so that a subset of the problems
can be set up as student projects. For example, in the discussions of the standard
benchmark designs of AM, it was suggested that the benchmark designs could serve
as geometry benchmark, property benchmark and process development benchmark
(Yang and Anam 2014). As the simultaneous design of multiple benchmark types
has been proved challenging, when setting this up as a learning project, one of the
benchmark types such as geometry benchmark could be set up as the objective.
In the Design for Additive Manufacturing (DFAM) course also at the Department
of Industrial Engineering at University of Louisville, various hands-on lab projects
were set up as listed in Table 4. These projects attempt to cover a range of DFAM
subjects from process capability investigation and material process-property char-
acterization to lightweight geometry designs. The projects were also designed in
a sequence that would facilitate progressive learning about the integrated DFAM
theory. In the first lab project, the students were asked to use AM to design and
realize a relatively simple real-world product with certain geometrical and mechan-
60 L. Yang

Fig. 1 Student designs for AM geometry benchmarking

ical requirements. Using the desktop material extrusion processes which have lower
process resolutions, the students were set up to perform an “impossible” task, which
would demonstrate the limitations of the AM product realization and the need of
DFAM concepts. The second lab project aimed to help the students to establish the
process geometrical quality design concept for AM and was combined with the open
research subject of AM geometric benchmark design. The students were given a
short lecture about the current state-of-the-art research with the geometry bench-
mark designs and their design strategies. The students were then presented with
various objectives with the geometry benchmark designs such as the characteriza-
tion method for Geometry Dimensioning and Tolerancing (GD&T) with AM parts,
considerations of variability with AM processes, and easiness of metrology. The
students worked in groups of 2–3 and propose benchmark designs to the classes
in competition for the final selection. The selected design would then be fabricated
using various AM technologies (e.g., powder bed fusion, vat photopolymerization,
material extrusion, binder jetting) by individual groups and consequently used for
metrology. Figure 1 shows some of the benchmark designs proposed by students in
the previous semesters.
Following the completion of the first two lab projects, the students would have
opportunity to gain some additional in-depth understanding about the design for
mechanical properties with the AM processes. This lab would focus on the intro-
duction of the geometry-process-property design for the AM technologies, which
is different from many traditional manufacturing processes that often allows for the
separate design of geometries and material properties. This project was usually set
up by using the material extrusion processes since the fabrication costs are relatively
low. The design of material properties for the material extrusion structures include
various aspects, such as the infill pattern, the number of skins/shells, the printing
parameters (speed, temperature, bed preheating, etc.), the part orientation, the part
dimensions, and the use of slicer software. In order to minimize the unnecessary
implications induced by the software slicing algorithm, the project could be set up
on a single printer. This also reduces printer-to-printer variability if such design fac-
tor is not intended to be investigated. Table 5 shows the experimental design table
used for the investigation of mechanical properties of “standard” tensile coupons,
while Fig. 2 illustrates another project setup that focuses on the investigation of the
effects of infill designs on the mechanical properties of the printed parts.
Introducing the State-of-the-Art Additive … 61

Table 5 Example experimental design for mechanical property evaluations of material extrusion
Printing temperature (°C) 205, 215, 225
Printing travel speed (mm/s) 100, 150
Angle of tilt (°) 0, 90
Coupon cross-sectional size (mm) 3, 5, 7
Layer thickness (mm) 0.3
Number of shells 2
Infill density 20%
Raft Yes

Infill Shell

Fig. 2 Project example for infill pattern effect for material extrusion AM

The students would be normally given about 2–3 weeks to work on this project
depending on the schedule and availability of the printers. Due to the large size of
the experimental designs, the project was split into smaller experimental groups and
assigned to each groups. Consequently, after collecting the testing results, the students
would be asked to submit the data to the lecturer, who would compile the results and
send them back to the class for the data analysis and final reporting. In the last lab
project, the students would focus on the design of AM lightweight structures. This
subject has been of great interest for the AM research and development communities,
therefore the focus of the project was to expose the students with different design
methodology of AM lightweight structures, including the topology optimization
and cellular designs. Depending on the AM platform intended to be used for the
project, the level of complexity of the lightweight designs can be predefined to
ensure manufacturability. For example, when material extrusion printers are used,
the topology optimization designs could be restricted to 2D, and the cellular designs
could be restricted to 2.5D extruded lattices such as honeycomb (Fig. 3a). On the
other hand, when laser sintering powder bed fusion processes are employed, the
geometry design restrictions could be largely removed.
The students were asked to design for lightweight structures for static three-point
bending load for a bar structure using both topology optimization and cellular designs.
For the topology optimization designs, commercial topology optimization software
(e.g., solidThinking or Fusion 360) usually provide relatively straightforward topol-
62 L. Yang

Z Y m

2x unit cell
1mm thickness
2x unit cell

(a) 2D designs (material extrusion) (b) 3D designs (laser sintering powder bed fusion)

Fig. 3 AM lightweight design project examples

ogy optimization modules for single-loading cases and could be used by the students
for the projects. For the cellular structure designs, the students were instructed to
utilize unit cell based design methods, which could be realized via commercial CAD
software. The lightweight designs could be evaluated potentially via finite element
analysis (FEA), however, the students were required to overcome potential practical
issues such as file format compatibility issue and computational cost issues. The
setup of this design project closely imitates the current engineering practice, which
aims to not only facilitate the learning of the subjects but also give the students the
crucial experiences for AM lightweight engineering designs. The semester project of
this course was also set up specifically to stimulate knowledge synthesis and appli-
cation. The project theme was set up as a lightweight component design for a “real”
product, which required the students to combine the knowledge gained from the
previous lab projects and to apply optimization synthesize with the knowledge in the
design practices. One of such examples of project theme is the car bumper design.
As shown in Fig. 4a, the students were asked to design the car bumper that would be
assembled to a standardized car body. The students were allowed to use any design
methodology (empirical, theoretical, simulation) to achieve the design objectives
such as the maximum impact energy without damage on the car bumper; and the
maximum impact energy without damage to the passenger. Regular eggs were used
as passengers to increase the level of challenges to the designs. As the design objec-
tives are somewhat mutually exclusive and are difficult to achieve simultaneously,
the students must utilize the knowledge learned from the course to devise optimized
strategies. Such challenges are also currently encountered in the application of AM
lightweight designs, which often result in different trade-off scenarios that are arbi-
trary and empirical. Such diversity in design preferences was also reflected in the
course, which is illustrated in Fig. 4b by the different designs used by the students.
To increase the student engagement to the project, the final evaluation of the design
was set up as a competition. As shown in Fig. 5, the car bumper assemblies were
placed on a descending slope with egg passengers. The cars would slide down the
slope and hit a relatively sharp object placed at the bottom of the slope in order to cre-
ate the impact event. A short discussion session would be held after the competition
to give the students additional opportunities to analyze the car bumper designs and
summarize the learning outcomes. After the competition, the students would also be
given additional time (1–2 days) to submit a final report with written analysis. By
Introducing the State-of-the-Art Additive … 63

Bumper Assembly

(a) Semester project design example (b) Sample designs from students

Fig. 4 DFAM course semester design project

Fig. 5 Final evaluation competition of the semester project

analyzing the final report and comparing it with the report of the first lab project, the
learning outcomes of the DFAM theories could be quantified.

4 Summary and Further Remarks

There exist various challenges and risks in the integration of the state-of-the-art AM
knowledge into the teaching practices. One obvious challenge is the relative lack of
knowledge structure and sometimes even the validity of some of the conclusions.
It becomes more difficult for the students to fully comprehend the problems when
the overall understanding is still lacking. Instead of teaching knowledge, the lecturer
64 L. Yang

has to focus on the teaching of awareness and interests, which can be more difficult
to evaluate outcomes for. In addition, it also results in additional preparation pres-
sures for the lecturers. There is the risk of misinstruction, which can result from the
incorrect summarization of the literature or the lack of clear conclusions. To avoid
this, the lecturer must be keen to continuously follow the research and development
trend in the AM fields. Despite these challenges and risks, as already mentioned, it is
of crucial importance for the AM education to incorporate state-of-the-art research
and development in the related areas. With the goal of educating the next-generation
workforce in mind, it should be realized that unlike many other well-developed man-
ufacturing engineering principles, AM will likely face rapid development for the
coming decades, which makes it critical for the workforce to treat the knowledge
as more dynamic and be more engaged in the continuous research and development

Acknowledgements The author is grateful for the partial support of the America Makes/GE Global
Research grant #401004534. Many of the educational efforts reported in this chapter was supported
by the Rapid Prototyping Center at University of Louisville.


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Dr. Li Yang is an assistant professor in the Department of Industrial Engineering at University of

Louisville, with primary research interests in the design of lightweight structures using additive
manufacturing and powder bed fusion additive manufacturing technologies. He is the recipient of
the 2016 International Outstanding Young Researcher in Additive Manufacturing Award (FAME
Jr) and 2012 Emerald Engineering Outstanding Doctoral Research Award in Additive Manufac-
turing. University of Louisville Additive Manufacturing Research Center is made up of members
from the Schools of Engineering, Medicine, and Dentistry, the Center supports a range of activities
related to additive manufacturing from research, industrial collaboration to education and training.

External Resources: University of Louisville Additive Manufacturing Research Center is made up

of members from the Schools of Engineering, Medicine and Dentistry, the Center supports a range
of activities related to additive manufacturing from research, industrial collaboration to education
and training. https://louisville.edu/amrc.
Developing an Understanding of the Cost
of Additive Manufacturing

Martin Baumers and Chris Tuck

1 Introduction to Product Cost Estimation

Making good estimates of cost is very important for any successful and effective
organisation. Normally, the goal of cost estimation is to enable the management of
a business to make decisions by providing detailed information required to control
current activities and plan future ones. In the context of the manufacturing business,
cost estimation is used to control current processes, improve existing products, design
future products and decide which new technology and equipment to adopt. It is,
therefore, important for a multitude of decisions. The accuracy and consistency of
cost estimation is critical as it determines the quality of this decision-making, and thus
shapes the overall performance and effectiveness of an organisation. Overestimation
of cost is bound to result in, among many other things, loss of sales and goodwill
in the marketplace. Underestimation of cost is likely to result in financial shortfalls
or losses. Because cost estimation is so important in manufacturing, a large body of
research on costing methods, concepts and techniques have emerged (for an overview,
see Niazi et al. 2006). This chapter explores which costing approaches are helpful
to understand the costs incurred through the operation of Additive Manufacturing
(AM) technology and how they can be used in practise. A number of textbooks exist
on product cost estimation techniques used in the engineering domain to address a
broad range of issues, spanning production cost estimation for standard components,
cost analyses of complex products, cost optimization, rough and detailed costing
methods supporting design, estimation of overhead costs and life cycle costing (see,
for example, Ostwald 1992; Clark 1997; Brimson 1991). Available product cost
estimation techniques can be assigned to individual categories, which provides an
initial orientation. Figure 1 summarises a classification of cost estimation methods.

M. Baumers (B) · C. Tuck

Faculty of Engineering, Centre for Additive Manufacturing, University of Nottingham,
Nottingham NG8 1BB, UK
e-mail: martin.baumers@nottingham.ac.uk

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019 67

E. Pei et al. (eds.), Additive Manufacturing—Developments in Training
and Education, https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-76084-1_5
68 M. Baumers and C. Tuck

Fig. 1 Classification of product cost estimation techniques (adapted from Niazi et al. 2006)

Fig. 2 Types of costs found in product cost estimation (adapted from Son 1991)

To identify which kinds of costs to include, and hence define the scope of a
cost analysis, it is further helpful to classify costs by type. To support the analysis
of the costs of advanced manufacturing technologies, a categorization relating to
productivity, quality and flexibility has emerged. Additionally, when investigating
costs in complex systems, it is useful to distinguish between well-structured costs and
ill-structured costs (Son 1991). Well-structured costs are costs that are sufficiently
well understood by accountants, for example, the costs of raw materials. Ill-structured
costs, however, are costs that are not well understood due to limitations in knowledge
or data or lacking accounting practise. Figure 2 summarises the general relationship
between these categories and provides examples for each.
Developing an Understanding of the Cost of Additive Manufacturing 69

Having established the background and purpose of cost estimation, this chapter
continues with a brief summary of existing AM cost estimation methods and models.
This is followed by a section containing a step-by-step tutorial on how to build such
cost models. The subsequent part discusses how such models can be applied to a
common type of investigation known as breakeven analysis. This is followed by
identification of problems with the simple cost models presented in this chapter
and extensions that have been proposed to address these problems. Following this,
it is briefly explained how to use specific cost estimates as a, particularly simple
methodology to arrive at rough estimates of the cost of AM. The chapter ends with
a series of conclusions.

2 Understanding the Characteristics of Additive

Manufacturing Cost Models

Analyses of production costs come in two different flavours, namely, cost estimation
techniques, which are referred to in this chapter as cost estimators, and cost models.
The difference lies in their purpose. Cost estimators are specified to yield insight into
the absolute cost performance within a manufacturing approach; they are judged on
the basis of their accuracy and consistency. Cost models, on the other hand, are
designed to represent cost relationships—their goal is, therefore, not only to produce
valid cost estimates but to also reflect the relationships between various relevant
aspects. For this reason, cost models are judged on their ability to capture important
aspects in an appropriate way as well as on the accuracy and consistency of their
Investigations of the costs incurred by AM are of interest to a number of par-
ties, including technology users, AM and prototyping service providers, software
developers, AM technology vendors and the investment community. This chapter,
however, will focus on AM cost models developed in the academic engineering lit-
erature for the simple reason that these models are published openly and described
in a high level of detail. In the classification of cost estimation techniques presented
in Fig. 1, most cost models proposed for AM fall into the categories of parametric
costing techniques and activity-based costing techniques (Di Angelo and Di Stefano
2011). Parametric costing techniques express costs as a mathematical relationship
between different variables that are obtained through statistical methods. As such,
these techniques do not require a deep understanding of the investigated technology
at hand and can be specified quite generally. In contrast, activity-based cost models
rely on a detailed understanding of processes and products in terms of elementary
operations, components and activities, allowing the attribution of particular cost ele-
ments. To form an activity-based cost model, these are summed up to obtain an
overall product cost estimate. The seminal AM cost model was published in 1998
by Alexander et al. and falls under the category of activity-based costing.
70 M. Baumers and C. Tuck

Fig. 3 Summary of an AM activity-based cost model

This model, and most that followed operates by first estimating the time required
by different process steps, including the duration of the AM build process itself.
A number of cost elements, normally of the well-structured kind (Fig. 2), can be
assigned to the AM process through an indirect cost rate, which is measured in money
terms per unit of time. Multiplied by the time estimate, this yields the total indirect
cost associated with the build process. Indirect costs normally include machine main-
tenance, consumables, depreciation, labour and various overheads.
Next to indirect costs, there are also direct costs arising more immediately from
the operation of the AM system. These normally include raw material costs and
occasionally energy costs. In AM, direct costs are usually determined by the overall
amount of material deposited over the course of the build process and are thus closely
related to the geometries contained in the build. Therefore, AM cost models usually
estimate direct costs on the basis of the volume of the product geometries contained in
the build operation, including any sacrificial support structures. To obtain the activity-
based cost model, direct and indirect costs are then added to produce an estimate of
total cost, which can then be broken down to the unit cost of the individual part, or
product, contained within a build. Figure 3 summarises this cost modelling approach
in a flow chart.
The build cost and unit cost estimates resulting from such models are normally
reliable and are used for a range of different purposes. For example, such models can
be used in inter-process comparisons to evaluate the cost performance of different
AM systems against each other or against the cost performance of conventional
manufacturing technologies. Additionally, such models can be used to explore the
cost effects of changes to product design, which would enter the model as a change
in raw material, build time and quantity of parts included in the build volume. As
discussed in the following sections of this chapter, AM cost models are also used to
Developing an Understanding of the Cost of Additive Manufacturing 71

form opinions on how unit costs relate to the quantity of products manufactured. As
indicated in Fig. 3, the available cost models are mostly limited to well-structured
costs. For increased realism, some newer models include ill-structured aspects such
as raw material degradation or material losses as well (see, for example, Baumers
et al. 2017).

3 How to Build an Additive Manufacturing Cost Model

To construct a model of the activity-based costing type for AM, a number of steps are
required, which are presented briefly in this section. The activity-based approach is
very flexible so it is possible to adapt individual steps depending on the scope of the
cost investigation and the type of AM technology analysed. This is important as the
working principles and patterns of machine operation of different AM technology
variants differ significantly (see, Gibson et al. 2010). Correspondingly, the costs
associated with different AM technology types also exhibit substantial variation
and respond differently to changes in individual variables, for example, production
Step 1: Definition of the scope of the costing model
Since AM processes are normally not implemented as stand alone systems in isola-
tion, especially where they are adopted for manufacturing purposes, it is necessary
to define the scope of the cost model as a first step. To provide an initial overview of
the AM process, the generic AM process is instructive (Gibson et al. 2010). Figure 4
defines the typical scope of an AM cost model.
Three pre-processing steps are included in the cost model, namely, file conversion,
file transfer and machine preparation. Further, it is assumed that two post-processing
steps are included, namely, product removal and surface processing. It is assumed
that these costs are measurable and can be expressed in the terms C pre-processing and
C post-processing , respectively.

Step 2: Build time estimation

The next step in the cost analysis is to estimate the build time required by the AM
system to execute the investigated build operation. As many AM systems require
significant time to warm up or cool down, during which no other activities can
take place within the machine, such durations should be included in the build time

Fig. 4 Scope of the cost investigation in the generic AM process

72 M. Baumers and C. Tuck

estimator. However, as discussed in the literature, it must be expected that product

geometry and build composition have a significant effect on build time (see, for
example, Baumers et al. 2017). Hence, the accurate estimation of build time can be
complex and highly specific to the system and the product geometries contained in
the operation.
A simple build time estimator that performs well on some AM systems rests on the
assumption that the processing speed per layer is constant. This simplification works
well for AM systems processing full layers instantaneously, such as mask-based
stereolithography, or if the build volumes are evenly filled with product geometries
in three dimensions, such as in polymeric powder bed fusion systems operated at full
capacity. Making this assumption, overall build time T build can be approximated as

TBuild  Tsetup + Tlayer l + Tcool−down , (1)

where T setup is the time required for machine initialization and warm up, T layer is the
processing time required per layer, l is the total number of layers in the build and
T cool-down is the time required by the system to cool down following the end of the
build process.

Step 3: Calculation of the indirect cost rate

Since the described model forms an activity-based costing approach, several cost
elements and activities are attributed to overall costs through build time. This requires
the calculation of an indirect cost rate Ċ indirect measured as a monetary cost incurred
per unit of operating time ($/h). Since the elements of indirect cost are normally
obtained on an annualised basis, these costs are broken down to an hourly rate
by dividing the annual cost through the number of operating hours per year. It is
important to note that this introduces an aspect of capacity utilisation over time, as it
relies on the share of operating hours of overall time. In most models, the operating
time is assumed to lie between 50 and 90% of total time. Since a diverse set of
costs is included in indirect costs, it is instructive to discuss the three most important
elements, which are given as follows:
1. Importantly, the indirect cost rate Ċ indirect reflects the purchase cost of the AM
system and of ancillary systems, such as raw material handling or unpacking
stations. As capital equipment, this cost does not arise as a lump sum but as a
depreciation cost over time. In most studies, a straight line depreciation method
is used with a depreciation period of 5–10 years. Additional costs included in
machine costs are maintenance expenses and the costs of consumables such
as protective gas, filters, seals and components with a replacement interval, as
required by the investigated AM technology type.
2. Ċ indirect also includes the labour costs incurred by running the AM system,
normally due to a specialised AM technician or machine operator. Interestingly,
many AM cost models assume that a technician operates an AM system on a
one-to-one basis, implying that the machine requires constant supervision and
Developing an Understanding of the Cost of Additive Manufacturing 73

technician activity. It should also be noted that labour costs include employer
contributions. This means that labour costs are likely to exceed the actual
technician’s salary.
3. The indirect cost rate also reflects the overheads allocated to the operation of the
AM system. Such overheads may result from production itself, for example, in
the form of building space required to house the machine or other infrastructure
costs. Additional overheads are administrative and relate to computer equip-
ment, communications and software licences. Some cost models additionally
include energy costs in the production overheads.
Step 4: Estimation of direct costs
Direct costs are the costs associated with physical inputs required for the operation
of an AM system. As for all manufacturing technologies, the most important direct
cost arises through the raw materials used in the process, including one or more
build materials, and if required, sacrificial support materials. Since AM uses three-
dimensional digital design files to control the process (normally in the *.stl format),
it is usually possible to accurately estimate the total volume of the products and
support structures contained in the build volume though specialised software. This
information can then be combined with the price of the raw material, normally based
on a quotation from a raw material vendor, to form a direct cost C direct estimate.
It should be noted that raw material refreshing forms a significant source of cost in
some AM technology variants, therefore direct costs occasionally include a factor for
material refresh or waste. Additionally, some models include energy costs as direct

Step 5: Specifying the cost per build and unit cost

After obtaining the required data and computing the elements described in the above,
it is possible to specify the cost model for the build C build , including the pre-processing
and post-processing costs.

Cbuild  C pr e− pr ocessing + Ċindir ect Tbuild + Cdir ect + C post− pr ocessing (2)

If multiple parts are contained in the build volume, it will be important to break
down C build to the level of the individual part contained. Where the products con-
tained within the build volume are different, it is possible to identify unit cost C unit,i
associated with part i by multiplying C build by its volume fraction, which is defined
as the volume V of part i divided by the volume of all j parts contained in the build,
such that
Cunit,i  Cbuild  (3)
j Vj

If q units are contained in the build volume and all share the same geometry, meaning
that they are instances of the same design, it is possible to further simplify the unit
cost model C unit by simply dividing C build by q
74 M. Baumers and C. Tuck

Cunit  (4)

It has been noted above that cost estimates in AM tend to be very process- and
geometry-specific. Additionally, it is clear that the estimated cost levels C unit and
C build are determined by the scope of the cost analysis. To ensure the usefulness of
the cost estimate and to allow an assessment in terms of accuracy, it is, therefore,
important to provide additional information alongside the cost estimate. This should
state clearly aspects such as build composition, machine type and setting, important
operating parameters, build materials, degree of capacity utilisation over time and
scope in terms of pre- and post-processing steps.

4 Using Cost Estimators in Breakeven Analyses

In many cases, it will be of interest to explore the relationship between unit cost
and the quantity manufactured. While cost models of the above type can be used to
describe such relationships, it is important to note that C build is likely to change if q
is varied. Moreover, as AM is a toolless process, it is normally considered realistic
to allow for the insertion of additional, possibly unrelated, products in the analysed
build volumes, further changing C build . For this reason, establishing the relationship
between quantity and unit cost, formally defined as a unit cost function C unit (q), is
a complex task. Where build compositions are changed in non-systematic ways, for
example, by mixing different components in build volumes, this is considered to be
particularly challenging. Unsurprisingly, this has led to different conclusions about
the unit cost behaviour of AM as production quantity expands. Some authors argue
that there is a complex and hard-to-predict pattern resulting from a gradual filling
up of the build volume, depending on build configuration and product geometries
(Ruffo et al. 2006). Shown graphically for the technology variant polymeric powder
bed fusion in Fig. 5, a complex, sawtooth unit cost pattern is observed as quantity
expands. Other authors theorise that there is no clear relationship between unit cost
and quantity and the unit cost function can be treated as a horizontal line (Hopkinson
and Dickens 2003; Atzeni and Salmi 2012). This cost behaviour is also graphically
summarised in Fig. 5.
Where the unit cost functions of different processes or systems are available, it
is possible to perform breakeven analyses. The goal of such analyses is to identify
points at which different unit cost functions intersect, thereby identifying quantities
at which the unit costs of different processes are equal. These points form cut-off
quantities that can, for example, inform process selection. In the example shown in
Fig. 5, the two competing AM unit cost functions are compared to a unit cost func-
tion associated with injection moulding, allowing the identification of two alternative
cut-off thresholds, below which the selection of the AM route would minimise cost
and above which injection moulding would be the more cost-efficient pathway. Nat-
urally, the use of such inter-process breakeven analyses assumes that the products
Developing an Understanding of the Cost of Additive Manufacturing 75

Fig. 5 Scope of the cost investigation in the generic AM process

created through the different processes are functionally equivalent, which forms a
simplification. This is discussed, among other issues, in the following section.

5 Problems and Extensions

As stressed in this chapter, the construction of AM unit cost models requires a number
of assumptions and simplifications. In many cases, it is justifiable or necessary to
make these assumptions, either for practical reasons (such as lack of data) or because
they do not diminish the accuracy of the model results. In other cases, it may be
necessary to extend the basic cost model in order to maintain its usefulness and
relevance. This section presents four problems that have emerged in the field of AM
cost modelling and describes extensions to the basic model that aim to address these

5.1 Efficient Capacity Utilisation

As discussed in the context of breakeven analyses, some AM cost models allow for
significant unused build volume capacity in the estimation of unit costs. Especially
considering AM’s ability to fill empty capacity with other geometries, for example,
by renting out unused build space, it may be questioned whether leaving capacity
empty constitutes technically efficient technology usage. In principle, any manufac-
turing configuration that does not produce the maximum output from given set of
inputs is considered technically inefficient, and hence cannot be seen as a part of a
proper unit cost function (see, for example, Curwen and Else 2006). The ability to
minimise cost by efficiently configuring, or packing, build volumes has led to the
development of computer-based build volume packing tools, which are commonly
76 M. Baumers and C. Tuck

part of software packages supporting the AM workflow and also machine control sys-
tems. To ensure efficiency in unit cost modelling, build volume packing has also been
integrated within cost models in the AM literature (Baumers et al. 2013). However,
as evident in the field of operations research, efficiency in manufacturing execution
also entails a scheduling problem, which is traditionally discussed in the context of
flexible manufacturing systems, such as Computer Numerically Controlled (CNC)
machining. This implies that the build volume packing problem faced in AM cost
estimation does not stand on its own and should be integrated with schedule opti-
mization, leading to an even more complex cost estimation problem.

5.2 Additive Manufacturing as a Multi-step Process

It has been stressed in the above that AM cannot normally be implemented as a

stand alone technology, especially in the commercial manufacturing setting. Despite
forming part of early AM cost models (see, for example, Alexander et al. 1998),
not all AM costing approaches consider this aspect. As indicated in the generic AM
process shown in Fig. 4, the core AM process must normally integrate into a chain
of surrounding process steps. For the cost modeller, the challenge thus becomes
to appropriately define the boundaries of a cost investigation. Identifying appropri-
ate process boundaries can be particularly challenging without sufficient technical
knowledge of the product characteristics and of the AM technology under investiga-
tion. Due to substantially different capabilities, some AM technology variants will
require entirely different pre- and post-processing operations and quality assurance
processes (Gibson et al. 2010). To form an understanding of the overall setting in
which AM technology is used, process mapping forms a suitable technique that will
help define the scope of the cost model.

5.3 The Expected Cost Effect of Process Failure

Another commonly ignored aspect is that AM processes are prone to failure events
of various sorts, which all have a detrimental effect on cost performance. Therefore,
it may be important to include this aspect within cost modelling. Generally, it is
possible to classify process failure into two broad types— outright build failure in
which the process terminates prematurely, possibly destroying the parts contained
in the build volume and product rejection due to a failure to comply with product
specifications. Arguably, the more serious mode of process failure encountered is
outright build failure. Here, an unforeseen event occurs at some point during machine
operation that leads to the premature stoppage of the entire build process. Usually,
after discovering that this has happened, the AM technicians will attempt to recover
viable parts from the failed build volume and reschedule a replacement build for the
parts that were not completed or damaged. This type of process failure is associated
Developing an Understanding of the Cost of Additive Manufacturing 77

with significant costs for repeating the build and also disruption to the production
The second mode of process failure relates to the rejection of individual parts
after completion of the build. This occurs, for example, if a foreign object or debris
is present in the build volume and disturbs the deposition process or if there is an
anomaly in the cooldown processes leading to excessive part deformation. In the AM
workflow, the manufactured products are visually and dimensionally assessed by the
AM operators to test for this type of failure. In case rejection occurs, the product
will have to be built again. Since these events do not occur with certainty within
a particular build, the nature of the cost model changes in a subtle way if the risk
of failure is included. Rather than forming a deterministic cost model claiming to
represent the absolute cost of the AM processes, the model becomes a probabilistic
in a sense that it now reflects the expected cost of the AM process. Additionally,
process failure may occur at different stages within the AM process, so individual
elements of the process may be affected by a particular risk while other may not
be affected—further increasing the challenge of the cost modelling effort. Due to
the layer-by-layer operating principle of AM, the extent of the cost impact of build
failure is likely related to the Z-height of the build configuration and, therefore, to
degree of capacity utilisation. To minimise this risk, some professional operators of
AM technology constrain the Z-height of their builds artificially, thereby addressing
a complex risk management problem in practise. In terms of the overall magnitude
of the expected cost of process failure, a recent study has shown that this risk may
account for up to 38% of the total expected process cost of a polymeric powder bed
fusion system (Baumers and Holweg 2016b).

6 The Cost Impact of Design Adaptation

In the engineering domain, it is generally assumed that the choices of material,

design and manufacturing process are interdependent. This means that one aspect
cannot normally be changed without assessing the knock-on effects on the other two
aspects, as illustrated by Fig. 6. Therefore, where breakeven analyses are constructed
on the basis of unit cost functions, as shown in Sect. 4, it may well be the case that
inappropriate material/design/process combinations are compared, severely limiting
the usefulness of the cost investigation.
To make inter-process cost investigations less vulnerable to this problem, some
AM cost models compare different versions of products, tailored to the requirements
of different processes (Atzeni and Salmi 2012; Baumers et al. 2017). While increasing
the robustness of such cost comparisons, this extension adds the challenge of defining
at least one additional product design and material specification, requiring substantial
additional expertise regarding the product and alternative manufacturing processes.
78 M. Baumers and C. Tuck

Fig. 6 Interdependence of
design, material and process

7 Some Additional Considerations

It is clear that the ownership structure of the AM equipment as a capital asset will
have a significant effect on the management decisions concerning it. However, as far
as cost models of AM are concerned, the costs related to different ownership options,
be it outright purchase, hire purchase or lease, will enter through the indirect cost
rate. This makes the activity-based costing approach presented in this chapter quite
robust and applicable to the business practises of most AM technology users and
also technology vendors. Similarly, the AM technology user may enter into various
arrangements with the technology vendor concerning machine repair, spare parts and
maintenance. In practise, this can be organised as a flat annual fee or a usage-related
fees. Again, the different configurations will enter into the indirect cost rate.

8 Using Specific Cost Estimates

This chapter has shown that basic and reasonably accurate AM cost models can
be constructed with relative ease. However, simple models may rest on a number
of assumptions and simplifications which may diminish their realism. To address
some of these problems, a number of extensions have been proposed to increase
the quality of the model at the expense of additional model complexity. Fortunately,
in some cases, only a very rough approximation of cost is needed, for example, in
preliminary analyses of product design or for initial assessments of business cases.
In these contexts, specific cost indices, each encapsulating a snapshot of the cost
performance of an AM technology in a particular setting, are useful. Such indices
approximate the overall cost of an AM process per volume unit of material deposited,
for example, in $ per cm3 , and allow the calculation of a rough unit cost estimate if the
geometric volume of the product under investigation is known. Table 1 summarises
Table 1 Specific cost indices obtained from the literature
Study Technology variant Material Capacity Support Pre- and post-processing Risk of Specific cost
utilisation structures build failure estimatea
($/cm3 )
Hopkinson and Stereolithography Unspecified Full build Included manual pre- and Ignored 0.72
Dickens (2003) epoxy polymer post-processing
Filament extrusion Unspecified ABS Full build Included manual pre- and Ignored 0.60
Laser sintering Unspecified Full build Not applicable manual pre- and Ignored 0.37
Nylon post-processing
Ruffo et al. (2006) Laser sintering Duraform PA Full build Not required manual pre- and Ignored 0.36
(Nylon polymer) post-processing
Gibson et al. (2010) Stereolithography Unspecified Full build Included Ignored Ignored 0.68
Grimm (2010) Filament extrusion ABSplus Single part Included Included Ignored 0.70
Material jetting EX200 Single part Included Included Ignored 1.88
Film transfer FTI-GN Single part Included Included Ignored 0.95
imaging (polymer)
Developing an Understanding of the Cost of Additive Manufacturing

Material jetting VeroWhite Single part Included Included Ignored 1.32

Binder jetting Zp150 (polymer Single part Not required Included Ignored 0.48
Sheet lamination PVC Single part Included Included Ignored 1.75
Table 1 (continued)

Study Technology variant Material Capacity Support Pre- and post-processing Risk of Specific cost
utilisation structures build failure estimatea
($/cm3 )
Atzeni and Salmi Direct metal laser AlSi10 Mg Full build Included as a Pre- and post-processing, Ignored 11.70b
(2012) sintering 10% waste factor heat treatment
Baumers et al. Direct metal laser Stainless steel Full build Included Only wire erosion Ignored 7.05
(2013) sintering 17-4PH
Baumers et al. Material jetting VeroClear Full build Included Only build process Ignored 2.30
Baumers et al. Selective heat SHS Nylon Full build Not applicable Only build process Ignored 1.84
(2015) sintering composite
Piili et al. (2015) Direct metal laser Stainless steel Full build Not applicable Only build process Ignored 7.90
sintering PH1
Baumers et al. Electron Beam Ti6Al4 V Full build Included Only build process Ignored 7.63
(2016a) melting
Baumers and Laser sintering PA2200 (Nylon) Full build Not applicable Full process chain Included 1.04
Holweg (2016b)
a As reported by Baumers et al. (forthcoming). Converted into US Dollars according to exchange rate on 01/01/2017 (1.2339 $/£)
b Data used for specific cost not cited explicitly; estimated from the data provided
M. Baumers and C. Tuck
Developing an Understanding of the Cost of Additive Manufacturing 81

specific cost indices extracted from the academic literature for a number of different
AM systems, materials and process settings. As in the above, it must be stressed
that the cost performance of an AM system depends on many different variables and
parameters, so any unit cost estimate formed on the basis of specific unit cost indices
must be seen as an initial and crude approximation.

9 Conclusions

After providing an overview of the background and purposes of manufacturing cost

estimation, this chapter has provided a practical insight into AM cost modelling. It
has shown how the elements of cost typically encountered in AM can be structured
in a straightforward way. The chapter has also featured a number of recurring issues
in the assessment of AM cost: the capacity utilizations problem, integration with
other manufacturing processes, the cost impact of build failure and the requirement
to explore the cost effect of design changes when considering different processes.
While making it difficult to robustly appraise AM cost in many cases, these aspects
are relevant due to the inherent openness of AM as a manufacturing technology.
Dealing with this complexity is a price that those considering the adoption of AM
technology for commercial purposes must be willing to pay. However, process cost
modelling and the formulation of unit cost functions of the type discussed in this
chapter is only the beginning of the journey towards an understanding of the full cost
implications of AM as an industrial manufacturing technology. Nevertheless, some
observers construe models of this kind as being reflective of the cost performance
of AM in high volume industrial settings. This is not the case for two reasons. First,
being largely based on a prototyping mind-set, AM system architectures and their
operational processes (most importantly relating to quality assurance) are still evolv-
ing into manufacturing systems. New and currently emerging AM technologies and
surrounding systems will need equally evolved cost models. Second, by concentrat-
ing on fixed, or static, technological relationships with respect to production quantity,
the cost models discussed in this chapter ignore the dynamic sources of cost reduc-
tions central to competitiveness in many industries over time. Such sources of cost
reduction are crucial in cost-driven industries, for example, in the automotive sector.
New AM cost models will thus need to reflect production progress and efficiency
gains manufacturing quantity increases over time. This is something the framework
presented in this chapter is not capable of.
82 M. Baumers and C. Tuck


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Developing an Understanding of the Cost of Additive Manufacturing 83

Dr. Martin Baumers is an Assistant Professor in Additive Manufacturing Management with an

interest in the economics of Additive Manufacturing (AM) and 3D Printing. After completing his
doctoral research in 2012, Martin joined the Centre for Additive Manufacturing at the University
of Nottingham. He has written a number of academic and non-academic papers on the topic,
spoken at various events and contributed to AM projects in aerospace, automotive, industrial
machinery and the medical and retail sectors. Martin’s focus areas are the economics and efficient
operation of AM as well as the value that can be derived from adopting the technology and its
potential sustainability benefits.

Chris Tuck is Professor of Materials Engineering, FIET, Director of the EPSRC Centre for Doc-
toral Training in AM (AM-CDT), he specialises in the coupled materials-process aspects of AM,
particularly, the controlled deposition of new AM materials. He has published widely in leading
international journals (e.g. Mat. Sci. & Eng A, Proc Roy Soc.) is on the editorial board for Nature
Scientific Reports and is a regular invited speaker/keynote at international conferences/industry
events (e.g. EUSPEN 2016, TMS, and MS&T in the USA). Co-Founder of a successful spin-out
and central to three patent families, he works closely with industry (e.g. leading I:UK ALSAM &
FLAC projects).

External Resources: The activity of the Centre for Additive Manufacturing (CfAM) is focused
on next generation multifunctional Additive Manufacturing (AM) technology that spans across
both the fundamental and applied research. The focus of the Centre’s activity is to work closely
with businesses to tackle major research challenges, ensuring that the UK remains at the fore-
front of AM and its application in industry. The successful commercial exploitation of the Centre’s
research in order to meet industrial and national need for cutting edge, low carbon manufacturing
technologies is a key priority. https://www.nottingham.ac.uk/research/groups/Cfam/.
Intellectual Property Rights and Additive

Rosa Maria Ballardini

1 Scope of the Problem

Additive Manufacturing (AM) technology is beginning to become mainstream. As

AM continues to develop, the potential implications for society may be radical.
Indeed, such disruptions may not only affect technical and business environments
but may also have major legal and policy implications. Intellectual property (IP) law,
the area of law that aims to protect and promote technological and artistic develop-
ments, clearly plays a central role in this context. Scholars have already identified
various shortcomings that the IP system might face due to developments in AM.
Several analogies have—legitimately—been made with previous disruptions faced
by the IP system due to other technological developments linked to digitalisation
(e.g. the advent of peer-to-peer file sharing technologies and various developments
in software technologies). Even though AM adds to this wave of disruptions, the
potential consequences, in terms of IPRs, are much broader. Interestingly, unlike
these previous disruptions, which affected segmented areas of IPRs, AM has possi-
ble repercussions on all fields of IP, including copyright, patent, trademark and more.
This, combined with the speed of development in AM technology, indicates that there
is a pressing need for several stakeholders, including industry and businesses, legal
practitioners and experts, as well as educators and researchers, to gain a better under-
standing of what the social impact of AM will be from the viewpoint of IP law. With
a focus on European copyright, trademark and patent law, this chapter sheds light
over some of the major challenges for the IP system created by the developments of
AM technology. The chapter also presents some possible solutions to navigate such

R. M. Ballardini (B)
Faculty of Law, University of Lapland, Rovaniemi, Finland
e-mail: rosa.ballardini@ulapland.fi

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019 85

E. Pei et al. (eds.), Additive Manufacturing—Developments in Training
and Education, https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-76084-1_6
86 R. M. Ballardini

2 General Elements of IP Disruption: The Legal Nature of

CAD and the Territoriality of IPRs

IPRs play a crucial role to promote innovation at several stages of the AM devel-
oping process. For instance, IPRs are important to protect innovations and creations
involved in the development of the printers, as well as the material to be used for
printing purposes. As such, IPRs may exist on the AM machines per se, on the meth-
ods to build the printers, as well as on the 3D scanning and printing technologies or
other computing service related to data processing. This notwithstanding, however,
the most controversial aspect involved with IPRs and AM does not lie on the IPRs
covering core AM-related technologies, but rather on the IPRs covering products
and methods that can be potentially reproduced via AM techniques; the fact that AM
enables, for the first time ever, the automated creation of a physical object from a dig-
ital file and vice versa is by far the most important element of IPR disruption. On the
one hand, the fact that AM enables the digitalisation of physical objects (which can
include also protected objects), creates a fertile soil for the growth of new business
opportunities. For instance, the digital element of AM easily allows and supports
the customisation of products, empowering end users to start from a digital CAD
file and tailor it in accordance to their needs and preferences, this way offering con-
sumers the ability to participate in the development of the products. As co-creation
and mass-customisation are two key vectors of user innovation (which is, itself, a
critical source of radical innovation), it has been forecast that this type of co-creation
activities will become much more important in the future (Ballardini et al. 2016,
2017). In addition, AM also enables the growth of AM platforms and intermedi-
aries, connecting them to internet users who can access 3D models, download them,
modify them, redistribute them and ultimately print them out as physical objects. As
such, AM may trigger developments in the traditional business models used in many
manufacturing businesses. These businesses can now capture the advantages linked
to the digitalisation of objects and services. On the other hand, however, before this
idyllic scenario of prosperity and wealth might be realised, various challenges must
be tackled, including issues related to IPRs.
First, a key aspect of AM that needs to be addressed in relation to intellectual
property is the type of IPR that can be used to protect CAD files, as well as the relation
between the digital representation (i.e. the CAD file) and the physical representation
(i.e. the actual object) of a projected item. At the time of writing, no legislature or
court in Europe or the USA has yet addressed this question—although some possible
alternatives have been sporadically presented and discussed in academic literature.
For instance, various scholars have pointed out that, in the view of IP law, CAD
files could be considered as software, a database, a work of art, or even something
else (Mendis 2013, 2014; Elam 2016). As explained below, in fact, the legal nature
of CAD reflects upon whether IPRs can actually be a suitable tool to provide CAD
(or the information included in CAD) with adequate protection via exclusive rights.
Another important issue to be considered refers to the well-known Achilles’ heel of
IPRs— their territorial nature. IPRs are only enforceable in the countries in which
Intellectual Property Rights and Additive Manufacturing 87

they are granted. Therefore, the digital nature of CAD files, coupled with internet
access, represents a clear challenge in terms of IP enforcement. Finally, although
connected to the previous point, important questions relate to the enforcement and
interpretation of the currently-existing doctrines of direct and indirect liability for
IP infringement. In this context, an important case of study is the legal position of
intermediaries and CAD files repositories.

3 Specific Elements of Disruption: Copyright, Trademarks

and Patents

As previously mentioned, an important characteristic of AM is that it might poten-

tially affect doctrines and principles in all areas of intellectual property. As a result,
the implications of AM might affect various stakeholders operating in the fields of
arts and technologies. For this reason, it is important to shed some light over the key
elements of disruption that AM might bring into some key fields of IPRs (Table 1).

Table 1 Summary of major types of IPRs

Type Subject matter and purpose
Copyright Right related to original/creative works, including literary,
dramative, musical, artistic works (including software).
Right lies in the expression of an idea rather than its general
concept or character
Trademark Right to exclusive use of any sign capable of distinguishing
(e.g. words, letters, numerals, pictures, shapes, colours,
sounds, smells, etc.) by which consumers can identify the
source of goods or services
Patents Right to exclude others from practicing inventions that are
novel, inventive and industrially applicable in exchange for
disclosing the invention
Industrial designs Right to the original, ornamental and non-functional feature
(i.e. the appearance) of the whole or part of an industrial or
handcrafted product resulting from the features in the lines,
contours, colours, shape, texture, and/or materials used
Utility model Right of protection for certain inventions that are technically
less complex inventions or for inventions that have a short
commercial life and normally do not meet the patentability
Geographical indications Rights to signs used on products that have a specific
geographical origin and possess qualities or a reputation that
are due to that origin
88 R. M. Ballardini

3.1 CAD Copyright and Infringement Standards in Additive


At European level, copyright law is regulated by EU law via several sectorial Direc-
tives, one comprehensive directive and a great amount of case law from the Court
of Justice of the European Union (the CJEU) and by national law (Refer to EU
Copyright legislation at: https://ec.europa.eu/digital-single-market/en/eu-copyright-
legislation). Generally speaking, copyright protection attaches automatically as soon
as an ‘original’ ‘work’ (including literary, artistic, musical and pictorial works) is
created (Refer to Articles 1 and 2 of the Berne Convention for the Protection of Lit-
erary and Artistic Works (Berne, September 19, 1886) 828 U.N.T.S. 221, S. Treaty
Doc. No. 99–27, 99th Cong. (1986), as revised at Paris, July 24, 1979 (Paris Act) and
amended on September 28, 1979). The requirement of ‘originality’, which is a con-
ditio sine qua non for protection, has been extensively interpreted by the European
copyright jurisprudence. Under current rules, it is conceived that a work is original
if (1) it has been independently created (i.e. it has not been copied), and (2) it meets
the requested threshold of ‘creativity’ (the threshold of originality).
In addition, it should be pointed out that a basic principle of copyright law is that
protection only extends to the expression of ideas and not to ideas per se (the so-
called ‘idea-expression dichotomy’). Accordingly, useful, functional and technical
objects do not fall in the domain of copyright (Refer to, for example, Case C-604/10
Football Dataco and Others, published in the electronic Reports of Cases, para 39:
‘By contrast, that criterion is not satisfied when the setting up of the database is
dictated by technical considerations, rules or constraints which leave no room for
creative freedom …’). Finally, copyright grants the right holder a set of exclusive
moral rights (e.g. the rights to paternity and integrity) and economic rights (e.g. the
rights to reproduction, distribution, adaptation and making available to the public).
The first open question in terms of applying copyright law to the field of AM relates
to whether, and to what extent, CAD files are copyrightable. This question boils
down to two main issues, first, the issue about the legal nature of CAD, as earlier
mentioned (i.e. is a CAD file software, a database, a work of art or something else
entirely in the eyes of the law?) and, second, the issue of originality (i.e. under what
condition can a CAD file meet the requirement of originality in copyright law?).
Addressing the first point is important to correctly identify the applicable law.
Under EU copyright law, different set of rules might apply depending on what
type of work we are discussing (e.g. in terms copyright ownership, exceptions and
limitations to the right, and exhaustion of the right). For example, if a CAD file
qualified as ‘software’, the Software Copyright Directive (Directive 2009/24/EC on
the legal protection of computer programs, OJ L 111, 5 May 2009) would come into
play; while, if a CAD file was to be a ‘database’, it would be the role of the Database
Directive (Directive 96/9/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11
March 1996 on the legal protection of databases, OJ L 77, 27 March 1996.); and,
should CAD be considered as a general ‘work of art’, the InfoSoc Directive (Directive
2001/29/EC on the harmonisation of certain aspects of copyright and related rights in
Intellectual Property Rights and Additive Manufacturing 89

the information society, OJ L 167, 22 May 2001, p. 10) should apply. On the second
point, the controversy is threefold. First, an interesting question relates to whether,
and under what conditions, a CAD file that is based on an already existing protected
object can attract a separate copyright right. Should the CAD file be considered an
exact digital replica (or a ‘substantially’ similar one) of a copyright-protected physi-
cal object, it would be quite uncontroversial to say that this would be a reproduction
(and thus an infringement on the pre-existing copyright right in the physical object)
for the purposes of copyright law (Refer to Art. 17(3) of the UK Copyright, Designs
and Patents Act 1988.) But to what extent and under what conditions can a CAD file
be considered as not being ‘substantially’ identical to the protected physical item
it represents, as well as constituting its author’s own intellectual creation (Refer
to e.g. Case C-5/08 Infopaq International [2009] ECR, I-06569, Case C-393/09
Bezpečnostní softwarová asociace [2010] ECR, I-13971 (BSA), Joined Cases C-
403/08 and C-429/08 Football Association Premier League and Others [2011] ECR,
I-09083 (FAPL), Case C-145/10 Painer [2011] ECR, I-12533, Case C-604/10 Foot-
ball Dataco and Others, published in the electronic Reports of Cases, Case C-406/10
SAS Institute Inc. v. World Programming Ltd, published in the electronic Reports
of Cases (SAS)), and thus potentially attract a separate copyright? Moreover, if the
physical object is not protected by copyright (for instance, because it is not original,
is utilitarian or functional, or even because it is in the public domain as the copyright
has already expired), to what extent can the CAD file of such an uncopyrighted item
attract copyright protection? Finally, in the case where the CAD file is created from
the scratch, is it possible to claim copyright protection in the CAD file if it represents
an uncopyrightable physical item or if the physical items it represents contains both
protectable and non-protectable elements? Should the CAD file be treated differently
in terms of IP protection from its physical counterpart, would this lead to highly com-
plex situations (e.g. in terms of licensing rights)? To date, these are all open questions.
Last but not least, AM technology also imposes challenges on the enforcement
side of the pre-existing IP rights. Especially challenging might be enforcement for
direct infringement due to the difficulties and costs of enforcing rights in the digital
and global framework. The digital element of AM allows the global sharing of the
digital representation of protected items, as well as the printing of the represented
object in any location where there is a printer and printing materials. This makes it
challenging to track down every single direct infringer. Moreover, many of these types
of infringement activities are likely to be pursued by private users, thus falling under
the domain of exceptions and limitations to copyright rights. Indeed, as usually occurs
in these types of scenarios, this might lead to increased efforts from IP holders towards
enforcing against acts of indirect infringement and secondary liability, for instance,
by bringing claims against search engines, CAD file sharing services and platforms
and Additive Manufacturing shops that may be considered liable for facilitating
90 R. M. Ballardini

3.2 Trademark Protection, Functions and Infringement with

Additive Manufacturing

European trademark law is a well-harmonised framework that builds around two

main pieces of EU law— the EU Trademark Directive (the TMD) (Directive (EU)
2015/2436 of the European Parliament and of the council of 16 December 2015 to
approximate the laws of the Member States relating to trade marks, OJ L 336, 23
December 2015 (TMD), which approximates the trademark laws of the EU Mem-
ber States, and the EU Trademark Regulation (the EUTMR) (Regulation (EC) No
207/2009 of 26 February 2009 on the European Union trade mark, OJ L 78, 24
March 2009), which establishes a Union-wide trademark title and directly applica-
ble legal rules. In addition, there is abundant jurisprudence stemming from the CJEU
interpreting EU trademark laws.
Trademarks protect ‘signs’ (as interpreted broadly and encompassing words, let-
ters and numerals, as well as colours, shapes, designs, or packaging of goods) that are
‘capable of distinguishing’ (i.e. capable of distinguishing the goods or services of one
undertaking from those of other undertakings—refer to TMD Art. 3(b) and EUTMR
Art. 4 and TMD Art. 4(1)(c) and EUTMR Art. 7(1)(c). Previously, it was also required
for the sign to be capable of graphical representation. However, the graphical repre-
sentation requirement has lately been abandoned (See Regulation (EU) 2015/2424 of
the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 December 2015 amending Council
Regulation (EC) No 207/2009 on the Community trade mark and Commission Reg-
ulation (EC) No 2868/95 implementing Council Regulation (EC) No 40/94 on the
Community trade mark, and repealing Commission Regulation (EC) No 2869/95 on
the fees payable to the Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (Trade Marks
and Designs). Trademark rights empower the IP holder with the exclusive right to
use the mark in the course of trade, as well as to forbid others to use identical or
similar confusing marks. ‘In the course of trade’ means in the context of commercial
activities with a view to economic advantage and not as a private matter. (See Case
C-206/01 Arsenal Football v. Matthew Reed [2002] ECR, I-10273, para. 40; Case
C-48/05 Adam Opel AG v. Autec AG [2007] ECR, I-01017; Case C-17/06 Celine
[2007] ECR, I-07041; Joined Cases C-236/08–C-238/08 Google France SARL v.
Louis Vuitton Malletier SA [2010] ECR, I-02417, paras 50–52 on the use of a trade-
mark for keyword advertising; and Case C-323/09 Interflora Inc v. Marks & Spencer
plc [2011] ECR, I-08625).
In terms of trademark protection and AM, one initial issue relates to the pos-
sible trademark protection of the CAD files (Ballardini et al. 2016). Indeed, with
AM, it is possible that where a company already holds trademarks on the physical
products, protection should be extended to different trademark categories such as
computer files and computerised programs (See Nice Classification (trademarks),
Goods, Class 090342–090372). Extending trademark protection to other categories
might be especially important at the present time because as explained earlier, the
legal nature of CAD files remains an open question. On the infringement side, the
main issues that arise with AM and trademarks relate to the scope of protection and
Intellectual Property Rights and Additive Manufacturing 91

the infringement standards. As with copyright, a key issue is to what extent poten-
tially infringing activities, such as the use of a trademark, can be considered as done
for private, as opposed to commercial purposes. When addressing this question in
the trademark field, we should distinguish between infringing activities related to
the use of a trademark on AM product per se and the use of a trademark in relation
to a CAD file—the latter embedding the most interesting, yet most controversial,
aspects. In fact, it is relatively uncontroversial that replicating an object that embeds
a trademark, or the shape of which is itself a trademark (3D trademark), in the course
of trade is an infringement (Refer to Article 5(1)(a)(b)(c) of the TMD.), regardless of
the type of manufacturing technique used (whether it is AM or something else). On
the other hand, however, the use of a trademark in relation to a CAD file might raise
more challenges. For example, can we argue that the use of a trademark in a CAD file
can be considered use ‘in relation to goods or services’, and thus possibly constitute
infringement? (Refer to TMD Art. 10(2) and EUTMR Art. 9(2).) Moreover, can we
consider CAD files, and services related to them, as identical or similar to the goods
and services for which the trademark is registered? Another question, then, relates to
whether such use ‘affects or is liable to affect’ the trademark functions (in particular,
the origin function). (See Art. 10(2)(c) of the TMD. See also Case C-206/01 Arsenal
Football v. Matthew Reed, supra n. 33, para. 51; Case C-245/02 Anheuser-Busch
[2004] ECR I-10989, para. 59) Should it be decided that CAD files are software that
enable printing of the trademarked object they represent, as opposed to the digital
representation or copy of the trademark itself, the answer might be negative (Refer
to Ammar and Craufurd Smith (2015) and also Norrgård et al. (2017). Finally, as for
any other IPRs, the digital element of AM poses challenges in terms of enforcement
(e.g. border control and customs notices might become inefficient measures against
importation of counterfeit products if AM leads to a reshoring of manufacturing) and
highlights the position of the intermediaries, especially in the context of contributory
infringement and secondary liability (Silverman 2016).

3.3 Patentability of CAD and Patent Enforcement Challenges

Currently, the European patent law system functions as a mix between national
and regional entities. At regional level, the most important framework in patent
law is the one of the European Patent Office (the EPO), which was established by
the European Patent Convention (the EPC) (Refer to Convention on the Grant of
European Patents of 5 October 1973 (European Patent Convention, EPC). On the
one hand, the major achievement of the EPC and the EPO has been substantively
harmonising the procedural and pre-grant patent laws of the signatory Member States.
On the other, however, the main downside of the EPC is that it does not provide
any post-grant harmonisation. Several efforts have been put forth since the 1950s
towards the creation of a harmonised system at the post-grant and litigation phases.
For instance, one of the major achievements has been the so-called Community
Patent Convention (the CPC) that, even though it never entered into force, provided
92 R. M. Ballardini

some concrete tools that allowed the approximation of European patent laws post-
grant (Refer to Convention for the European patent for the common market, [1976]
OJ L 17/1—Community Patent Convention, CPC). Ultimately, efforts towards this
direction might concretise in the ongoing ‘EU Patent Package’ project, a project
that aims at creating a new unitary patent (UP) and a unified patent court (UPC)
within the EU (Refer to Agreement of a Unified Patent Court, [2013] C 175/1 (UPC
Agreement), Regulation (EU) No 1257/2012 of the European Parliament and of the
Council of 17 December 2012 implementing enhanced cooperation in the area of the
creation of unitary patent protection and Council regulation (EU) No 1260/2012 of
17 December 2012 implementing enhanced cooperation in the area of the creation
of unitary patent protection with regard to the applicable translation arrangements).
However, under current rules litigation still remains the domain of national law.
According to the EPC, patents are granted for inventions that are new, involve
an inventive step, are capable of industrial application and are sufficiently disclosed
(Refer to EPC Article 52 and 56). In terms of infringement, both the CPC and the
UPC contemplate two types of infringement activities— direct infringement (giving
raise to ‘strict’ liability as to forbid others to make, use, sell, offer to sell, or import
the patented invention) and indirect patent infringement (giving raise to secondary
types of liability against those who supply or offer to supply third parties with means
to achieving an essential element of the invention, having the knowledge that such
means will be used in an infringing product or method) (Refer to Article 25 and 26 of
the UPC Agreement.). At the pre-grant stage, the major controversies that AM might
create refer to the protection of CAD files via patent law, as well as issues related
to ethics and morality when bioprinting comes into play. The first question might be
both critical and highly controversial. On the one hand, the CAD file may be the most
valuable and critical part of an invention. Inventions that are currently patented can,
nowadays, be represented digitally in the CAD file (e.g. by 3D scanning a protected
item), with the CAD file actually containing relevant and key information about the
patents. Moreover, it can be envisioned that, in the future, more and more inventions
will arise that can be made only via AM techniques. Therefore, protecting the CAD
file per se through patent law might be an important strategic alternative for inventors.
At the same time, however, unless it is decided that CAD files can qualify as software,
the only way to include CAD files into patent claims is to claim them as a specific set
of instructions to bring about the invention. This type of strategy, however, has not yet
been tested in patent claims drafting, and thus it remains to be seen whether such types
of claims will be accepted by patent offices. Indeed, under current rules, the most
typical strategy to protect CAD files is to keep them under trade secret rather than
disclose them via patenting. In the case of patents related to bioprinting (e.g. Additive
Manufacturing of human tissues), the most important challenge relates to issues of
morality and ethics. Morality claims might be raised based on Article 53(a) EPC and
Article 6(1) of the Biotech Directive that state that inventions ‘where the commercial
exploitation would be contrary to public or morality’ are unpatentable (Refer to
Minssen and Mimler (2017). AM also raises important questions in terms of patent
infringement and enforcement. Notably, AM raises difficulties for the enforcement
of patent protection of items that can be reproduced via AM (contrary to IPRs on the
Intellectual Property Rights and Additive Manufacturing 93

AM technologies per se). First, as with the other IPRs, it might be very challenging to
track down every single direct infringement due to the digital element. For instance,
even though it is clear that printing a protected object would equate to ‘making’
it in terms of patent law, trying to pursue actions against every small infringement
of such nature might be challenging, expensive and, ultimately, useless (many of
these small infringement activities might turn out being excused by the exceptions
and limitations set of rules. For instance, both Article 31(a) of the CPC and Article
27(a) UPC Agreement specify that rights conferred by a patent shall not extend to
‘acts done privately and for non-commercial purposes’). It is also unclear to what
extent the CAD file of a protected item can be considered as an essential element
of the invention if it is not mentioned in the patent claims. Ultimately, this is an
issue that will likely need to be addressed on a case-by-case basis. Regardless, it will
be interesting to see if, and under what circumstances, courts will find in favour of
infringement, e.g. if they will find an infringement through claim interpretation or
the doctrine of equivalence. For product patents, it has been argued that one option
could be to treat the CAD file in the same way as the physical patented product, thus
being able to argue that (commercial) distribution of the CAD file is equivalent to
the distribution of the physical product (Hollbrock and Osborn 2015). Whether these
types of arguments might stand in court, however, remains to be seen.
In terms of infringing acts, AM might put further pressure on the need to interpret
the concept of the illegitimate ‘making’ of the patented invention as opposed to
the legitimate ‘repairing’ of it. Issues related to making versus repairing often arise
when dealing with spare parts. On the one hand, the line between legitimate repair and
illegitimate making is generally not clear in the European patent framework—there
is no harmonisation on this issue in the law, while the case law is both scarce and,
at times, contradictory (Ballardini et al. 2016). On the other hand, there is reason to
believe that the technological and economic advantages portrayed by AM may very
well lead to increasing business activities in the area of spare parts: AM makes spares
increasingly available, reduces operation costs and allows faster delivery, tackling
three of the major existing problems with the spare parts markets. Indeed, questions
related to the extent to which users that do not fall within the category of private and
non-commercial users are allowed to legitimately repair purchased products via AM
techniques will become increasingly relevant the more AM technology spread. This
will put pressure on the legal system to further develop these concepts.
Overall, the difficulties and costs associated with pursuing direct patent infringe-
ment activities in the AM framework are likely to push patent holders to direct their
efforts towards secondary liability actions. At the same time, however, it appears clear
that patent law is not yet well equipped with dealing in the digital sphere. Among the
more pressing issues that AM raises in terms of patent law and secondary liability
in Europe are questions related to whether, and to what extent, the interpretation of
‘means’ can be extended from the physical and tangible significance (the traditional
way patent law have conceived means) to the digital one. It is currently not clear
whether providing a CAD file of a protected item could qualify as providing the
means to an essential element of the invention, due to the simple fact that CAD files
are, by definition, digital and not physical in nature. Finally, the role of intermediaries
94 R. M. Ballardini

Table 2 Specific Challenges to Selected IPRs Posed by AM

Type Challenges posed by AM
Copyright • Are CAD files copyrightable?
• What is the legal nature of CAD files (software, a database, a work of art or
something else?)? Thus, what piece of copyright law apply to CAD files in terms
of protection?
• Can a CAD file that is based on an already existing protected object attract a
separate copyright right?
• Under what conditions can a CAD file be considered as not being ‘substantially’
identical to the protected physical item it represents and constituting its author’s
own intellectual creation, thus, potentially attract a separate copyright?
• To what extent can the CAD file of an uncopyrightable(or partly
uncopyrightable) item attract copyright protection?
Trademark • Are CAD files possible to be protected via trademarks?
• Can the use of a trademark in a CAD file be considered use ‘in relation to goods
or services’, and thus, possibly constitute infringement?
• Can we consider CAD files, and services related to them, as identical or similar
to the goods and services for which the trademark is registered?
Patents • Are CAD files patentable?
• What is the legal nature of CAD files (software or something else?)?
• Morality concerns in the context of bioprinting and patents
• Direct infringement: can ‘reproducing’ the CAD file of a protected invention be
equated to ‘making’ the invention per se?
• Indirect infringement: can a CAD file be considered as the ‘means’ or ‘essential
element’ of the invention?
• Borderline between illegitimate ‘making’ versus legitimate ‘repairing’
(especially relevant in the context of spare parts business)

(e.g. repositories, network administrators, etc.) might become central for finding for
infringements (Table 2).

4 Navigating the Challenge—Some Practical Suggestions

Recent developments in the field of AM clearly indicate that this technology is likely
to have huge impacts on the way we apply and interpret IP law principles (touching
upon all areas of IP law) and doctrines in Europe. The digital element portrayed
by AM, creating the possibility for the ‘digitalisation of objects’, opens up several
previously unimagined questions on substantive and procedural IP law. Amongst
the most urgent issues to be addressed are questions related to the legal nature of
CAD files (in view of IP protection), and questions related to enforcement of IPRs
(including issues related to territoriality) and infringement (both direct and indirect
infringement actions). Another key area of IPRs that is likely to play an important
role as AM develops and spreads relates to the types of exception and limitations
to the rights, with special emphasis on acts done for private and non-commercial
Intellectual Property Rights and Additive Manufacturing 95

Fig. 1 Some questions to avoid infringement

purposes (due to the clear involvement of a large community of private users in the
AM value chain). Finally, there is a clear indication that the difficulties and costs
involved with pursuing actions against direct infringements might lead to a spur in
secondary liability claims. It is likely that intermediaries, such as service bureaus,
CAD files repositories and network administrators will be at the centre of several
disputes. This is a complex puzzle and only time will tell when and how the pieces
will come together. This chapter has shed light over the potential questions, as well
as several possible solutions that courts or legislator could decide to follow. As
an example, Fig. 1 illustrates some possible relevant questions that an educator or
researcher could follow in order to understand possible IPR implications of CAD
This is, however, just an example that does not (nor intend to) cover all possibili-
ties. Indeed, it is not possible to provide with clear-cut answers to the questions raised,
as likely many of these questions will need to be answered on a case-by-case basis.
Ultimately, it is important to raise awareness of this matter in order to educate the
potential stakeholders (e.g. industry, academia and educational institutions, as well
as policymakers and legislators) and ensure that decisions taken on the legal side
pursue the ultimate goal to foster further innovation in this important technological
96 R. M. Ballardini


Ammar, J., & Craufurd Smith, R. (2015). When a trade mark use is not a trade mark use? A 3d
Perspective, 10–11. https://ssrn.com/abstract=2760947.
Ballardini, R. M., Lindman, J., & Flores-Ituarte, I. (2016). Co-creation, commercialization and
intellectual property management—challenges with additive manufacturing technology. Euro-
pean Journal of Law and Technology, 7(3).
Ballardini, R. M., Norrgård, M., & Partanen, J. (Eds.). (2017). Additive manufacturing, intellectual
property and innovation—insights from law and technology. Wolters Kluwer.
Elam, V. (2016). CAD files and European design law. JIPITEC, 7, 146.
Hollbrock, T., & Osborn, L. (2015). Digital patent infringement in an era of additive manufacturing.
UC Davis Law Review, 48:1319, 1319–1385.
Mendis, D. (2013). “The Clone Wars”:-episode 1–the rise of additive manufacturing and its impli-
cations for intellectual property law-learning lessons from the past? 35(3) E.I.P.R., 155.
Mendis, D. (2014). “Clone Wars” episode II–the next generation: The copyright implications relating
to additive manufacturing and computer-aided design (CAD) files, 6 LIT, 265.
Minssen, T., & Mimler, M. (2017) Patenting bioprinting technologies in the US and Europe–The
5th element in the 3rd dimension. In R. M. Ballardini, M. Norrgård & J. Partanen (Eds.), Additive
manufacturing, intellectual property and innovation–insights from law and technology, Chap. 7.
Wolters Kluwer.
Norrgård, M., Ballardini, R. M., & Miia, K. (2017). IPRs in the era of additive manufacturing. In R.
M. Ballardini, M. Norrgård & J. Partanen (Eds.), Additive manufacturing, intellectual property
and innovation–insights from law and technology, Chap. 3. Wolters Kluwer.
Silverman, I. (2016) Optimizing protection, 38(1) E.I.P.R., 5, 6–7.

List of Legislations

1. Agreement of a Unified Patent Court, [2013] C 175/1 (UPC Agreement)

2. Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works (Berne, September 19,
1886) 828 U.N.T.S. 221, S. Treaty Doc. No. 99–27, 99th Cong. (1986), as revised at Paris, July
24, 1979 (Paris Act) and amended on September 28, 1979
3. Commission Regulation (EC) No 2868/95 implementing Council Regulation (EC) No 40/94
on the Community trade mark, and repealing Commission Regulation (EC) No 2869/95 on the
fees payable to the Office for Harmonization in the Internal Market (Trade Marks and Designs)
4. Convention on the Grant of European Patents of 5 October 1973 (European Patent Convention,
5. Convention for the European patent for the common market, [1976] OJ L 17/1 (Community
Patent Convention, CPC)
6. Council regulation (EU) No 1260/2012 of 17 December 2012 implementing enhanced coop-
eration in the area of the creation of unitary patent protection with regard to the applicable
translation arrangements
7. Directive 96/9/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 March 1996 on the
legal protection of databases, OJ L 77, 27 March 1996
8. Directive 2001/29/EC on the harmonization of certain aspects of copyright and related rights
in the information society, OJ L 167, 22 May 2001
9. Directive 2009/24/EC on the legal protection of computer programs, OJ L 111, 5 May 2009
10. Directive (EU) 2015/2436 of the European Parliament and of the council of 16 December 2015
to approximate the laws of the Member States relating to trade marks, OJ L 336, 23 December
Intellectual Property Rights and Additive Manufacturing 97

11. Regulation (EC) No 207/2009 of 26 February 2009 on the European Union trade mark, OJ L
78, 24 March 2009
12. Regulation (EU) No 1257/2012 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 17 December
2012 implementing enhanced cooperation in the area of the creation of unitary patent protection
13. Regulation (EU) 2015/2424 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 December
2015 amending Council Regulation (EC) No 207/2009 on the Community trade mark
14. UK Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988

List of Cases

1. Case C-48/05 Adam Opel AG v. Autec AG [2007] ECR, I-01017

2. Case C-245/02 Anheuser-Busch [2004] ECR I-10989
3. Case C-206/01 Arsenal Football v. Matthew Reed [2002] ECR, I-10273
4. Case C-393/09 Bezpečnostní softwarová asociace [2010] ECR, I-13971 (BSA)
5. Case C-17/06 Celine [2007] ECR, I-07041
6. Joined Cases C-403/08 and C-429/08 Football Association Premier League and Others [2011]
ECR, I-09083 (FAPL)
7. Case C-604/10 Football Dataco and Others, published in the electronic Reports of Cases
8. Joined Cases C-236/08–C-238/08 Google France SARL v. Louis Vuitton Malletier SA [2010]
ECR, I-02417
9. Case C-5/08 Infopaq International [2009] ECR, I-06569
10. Case C-406/10 SAS Institute Inc. v. World Programming Ltd, published in the electronic Reports
of Cases (SAS)
11. Case C-323/09 Interflora Inc v. Marks & Spencer plc [2011] ECR, I-08625.
12. Case C-145/10 Painer [2011] ECR, I-12533

Rosa Maria Ballardini is a Senior Lecturer in Intellectual Property law at the University of Lap-
land/Faculty of Law. She was awarded the title of Docent of intellectual property law at the Uni-
versity of Helsinki (Finland) in 2017, the PhD degree at Hanken School of Economics (Finland)
in 2012, the LL.M. degree at the University of Edinburgh (Scotland) in 2005 and the law degree
at the University of Brescia (Italy) in 2003. Previously, Rosa has been an Assistant Professor in
Intellectual Property Law at Hanken School of Economics (2012–2017) and a Visiting Scholar at
UC Berkeley, Boalt Hall (California) (2008–2009). Since 2005 she has researched and thought in
the field of IP law at various universities. Rosa’s research interests focus on the interface between
law (with focus on IP law) and technology. She has written extensively especially in the fields of
patent and copyright law, open innovation and open source, as well as IP strategies and IP man-
agement in various technological contexts (e.g. software, 3D printing, Artificial Intelligence and
Industrial Internet). Her research approach is multidisciplinary, combining law, technology, busi-
ness and policy via using different types of methodologies (e.g. traditional legal research methods,
empirical methods, as well as design thinking to law).

External Resources: The University of Lapland (ULap) offers BA and Master’s level degrees in
law and aims to be recognized internationally as an Arctic and Northern university that combines
social sciences with art, design and technology. This need is especially highlighted in the field
of education and research in IP law that naturally bridges law with technology. As a result, IP
law is currently one of the growing key scientific areas at the ULap/Law with various research
and educational projects having been launched lately in the field. ULap also has Institutes that are
organising research and educational programmes in the fields of commercial law (the Institute of
Commercial Law) and ICT law (the Institute of Legal Informatics). http://www.ulapland.fi.
Additive Manufacturing Validation
Methods, Technology Transfer Based
on Case Studies

Iñigo Flores Ituarte, Niklas Kretzschmar, Sergei Chekurov, Jouni Partanen

and Jukka Tuomi

1 Introduction

A firm’s supply chain and its interconnected manufacturing processes result in com-
plex systems (Rogers 2002). By definition, a complex system features a large number
of interacting components (i.e. agents, processes, etc.) whose aggregate activity is
nonlinear (i.e. not derivable from the summations of the activity of individual compo-
nents) and typically exhibits hierarchical self-organization under selective pressures
(Valckenaers and Brussel 2015). In other words, in complex systems, the same input
stimulus sometimes has relatively different responses. The literature has explained
that a successful outcome of a new technology transfer is dependent on how the
new technology is integrated in this complex system. At the same time, the lessons
learned and rules derived from successful technology transfer projects cannot be
applied exactly into all organizational settings, and therefore the outcomes will gen-
erally be different.
Additive Manufacturing (AM) is a cornerstone in the high-end manufacturing
scene. To a great extent, the technology is novel for the end-manufacturing of valu-
able mechanical components, which can be produced by metal, plastic or ceramic
materials. Technological projections define AM technologies as an important ele-
ment of the future of manufacturing (Bogue 2013). The hypothesis is that AM will
coexist and in certain cases replace conventional manufacturing techniques based on
subtractive and forming methods. By doing so, the technology will reduce the cost
of operations and at the same time improve the functionality of products or services.
The paradigm change is that mass production will need to become highly flexible
to answer individualized needs in a resource-friendly manner (Jiang et al. 2017).
The objectives for companies are to be able to serve heterogeneous niche markets as
well as the ‘long tail’ of the customer markets (Khorram Niaki and Nonino 2017). A

I. Flores Ituarte (B) · N. Kretzschmar · S. Chekurov · J. Partanen · J. Tuomi

Research Group on Advanced Production Technologies, Department of Mechanical Engineering,
Aalto University School of Engineering, Espoo, Finland
e-mail: inigo.flores.ituarte@aalto.fi
© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019 99
E. Pei et al. (eds.), Additive Manufacturing—Developments in Training
and Education, https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-76084-1_7
100 I. Flores Ituarte et al.

recent result of an empirical study with firms concluded that demand-side benefits
and compatibility (i.e. the ability to satisfy customer demands due to the possibility of
customization) are the main determinants of AM technology transfer (Oettmeier and
Hofmann 2016). As a consequence, inter-organizational factors are central for AM
technology transfer. In this scenario, the reality is that most of the companies lack
knowledge on the possibilities of AM systems in end-manufacturing applications.
The technology is continuously tested and improved in different industrial settings.
Thus, the supply chain of AM services, machines and materials development activ-
ities are under continuous growth. However, the size of the AM industry itself is
minimal in comparison to conventional methods of production, and the machine and
material costs are still high. Furthermore, companies do not necessarily have the tools
and the trained workforce to justify quantitatively and qualitatively the purchase and
technology transfer or use of modern AM systems for product development appli-
cations and end-manufacturing applications. In this regard, traditional education in
universities and applied science schools is still undergoing a transformation in their
curricula to integrate an up-to-date view on AM-related knowledge and its role in
manufacturing, product design and product development courses.

2 Challenges for Technology Transfer—The Additive

Manufacturing Business Ecosystem and Technology

Originally, the concept of business ecosystems was first presented in an article in the
Harvard Business Review. In this work, Moore (1993) defined the concept of busi-
ness ecosystem as a ‘random collection of interconnected or networked elements
(i.e. suppliers, lead producers, companies, competitors and other stakeholders) that
produces goods and services of value to customers”. Over time, all the ecosystems
gradually evolve into a more consolidated and structured community, and the ten-
dency is to be aligned in the direction set by one or more key leading companies. The
AM industry has become a networked ecosystem, where the stakeholders obtaining
value from the ecosystem are extremely fragmented with no clear ‘one-stop-shop’
solution provider offering end-to-end solutions. At the same time, the AM ecosys-
tem as a whole is trying to expand and conquer other markets and has become very
dynamic and difficult to predict.
The existing body of knowledge presents the AM industry at the expansion stage.
Economic data also supports this hypothesis, as the industry has had an average rev-
enue growth of 26.2% every year during the past 27 years (Wohlers 2015). According
to the analogies presented by Moore, this stage is presented as the process of bring-
ing a new offer to a large market by scaling up operation and maximizing market
coverage. This leads to the conclusion that firms in the AM ecosystem need to defeat
alternative manufacturing solutions and establish power relations with other players.
Gibson (2017) described this phenomenon as ‘technology convergence’. In his work,
Additive Manufacturing Validation Methods, Technology Transfer … 101

he mentions that AM would not be of any benefit if not combined with other tech-
nologies (e.g. CAD). In addition, the technology has naturally evolved to be used
in conjunction with other manufacturing methods. Currently, the industry growth
is supported by the fact that key original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) have
started to integrate AM systems mostly based on metal or plastic Powder Bed Fusion
(PBF) technologies in their manufacturing processes. Moreover, the expansion of the
AM industry has also been highly influenced by the expiration of some patents on
core technologies, such as material extrusion and vat-photopolymerization, which is
described commercially as Fused Deposition Modeling (FDM) and Stereolithogra-
phy (SLA), respectively.
Consultancy and academic publications point towards the need to develop a skilled
workforce with the ability to utilize and integrate AM technologies with another
manufacturing solution (Renda 2015). The required skills need to cover the cycle
from advanced and knowledge-intensive design tools (e.g. simulations tools for func-
tional optimization of components, topology optimization, lattice structure genera-
tion, manufacturing process simulation, etc.). All the way to the ability to transfer
the data to the machines in a digitalized networked manufacturing environment (e.g.
e-commerce platforms for manufacturing services, distributed manufacturing mod-
els, manufacturing capacity sharing, etc.). New skills will be increasingly needed for
quality assurance of AM methods, integration with conventional production methods,
STL data conversion and file manipulation as well as post-processing and mainte-
nance. Demand for application engineers and design engineers will surge to fully
exploit the advantages of the AM process and to justify technology transfer deci-
sions. To obtain value from AM implementation, companies need to manage complex
innovation and sociotechnical processes (Mellor et al. 2014). The role of these newly
trained engineers will become crucial to challenge the typical rules of designing and
manufacturing within organizations. In this regard, the new workforce will require
methods to assess the feasibility of AM technologies from an economic, technical
and organizational perspective.

2.1 Economics: Can Additive Manufacturing Compete in


Hopkinson and Dickens (2003) introduced a breakeven point method to evaluate the
economic feasibility of AM compared to conventional methods. For some geome-
tries, it is more economical to use AM methods than it is to use traditional approaches
for production. This method helped identify where the major sources of cost for AM
are to be found (i.e. machine cost, material cost and labour cost).
In this scenario, Fig. 1 shows the breakeven point analysis to replace conventional
manufacturing of a structural mobile phone component in pre-series production (i.e.
nominal size of 70 × 37 × 15 mm). The data in this case study was obtained by con-
tacting more than 25 offshore companies, in which case a company in the consumer
102 I. Flores Ituarte et al.

Fig. 1 Breakeven point analysis to replace the conventional manufacturing of a structural mobile
phone component in pre-series production. Adapted from (Flores Ituarte et al. 2016b)

electronics sector manufactures and assembles some of its products (Flores Ituarte
et al. 2016a, b). This case study allowed for the evaluation of costs and delivery times
for injection moulding as well as its AM alternatives (i.e. PA12 and Accura 25, made
by SLS and SLA). The data presents a breakeven point around production volumes
of 850 units for AM methods. Newly trained design engineers must understand that
AM systems would hardly compete in terms of cost with products that are designed
to be conventionally manufactured. Even if we consider that AM cost (i.e. those
related to material and machine cost) can be reduced by a factor of 10, the breakeven
would still be no higher than 5,000 units. Regarding this scenario, it is a mistake to
conceive of AM as a mass-production technology rather than as a tool to test and
refine the mass-production systems, utilizing the technology in the ramp-up phases
of product commercialization or as a bridge manufacturing technology.
We now take a look at the manufacturing applications of AM using metal compo-
nents. The use of AM is limited to small series production of complex and special parts
for aerospace, the automotive industry and med-tech. Figure 2 shows the cost devel-
opment of AM systems for increased build volume rates (i.e. the material volume
being created from the powder over time, which is used as a productivity indicator in
AM systems). The model behind this figure accounts for the major sources of cost for
AM (i.e. machine cost, material cost and labour cost) and compares the cost devel-
opment for three different materials. In this regard, the figure shows the result of the
cost development for increased build volume rates for rapid manufacture of a timing
pulley (i.e. nominal size of 53.8 × 53.8 × 60 mm) in an industrial AM system (i.e.
‘EOS M400’ with a 1KW fibre laser and a build platform of 400 × 400 × 400 mm).
The results of this case study indicate that cost savings are mostly dependent on the
cost of the material and to a great extent independent of the achievable build volume
rates or productivity issues. In this regard, the justification of AM applications merely
in economic terms is not a viable option. Thus, AM technology transfer decisions
will need to be accompanied by other parameters, as cost will continue being a barrier
for years to come.
Additive Manufacturing Validation Methods, Technology Transfer … 103

Fig. 2 Cost development for increased build volume rates in metal powder bed fusion systems

2.2 If Cost is the Barrier, What are the Enablers?

Conner et al. (2014) defined the key attributes for analysing the suitability of AM
applications from a manufacturability standpoint. These are defined as complexity,
customization, and production volume. In this regard, engineering decisions to trans-
fer AM technology need to look at these key attributes to assess how likely AM is
able to provide advantages over conventional manufacturing. To this end, (1) reduc-
tion of lead time and new product introduction enabled by AM for ‘manufacturing
of few’, (2) design modifications, product variations and ‘mass-customization’ and
finally (3) improved functionality or product performance ‘complexity advantage’
(e.g. topology optimization, part consolidation, etc.) are some of the key enablers
that make AM competitive versus conventional methods in traditional manufacturing
In this regard, Fig. 3 shows the delivery time of injection-moulded parts versus
AM for the same structural mobile phone component introduced previously. Injec-
tion moulding requires at least 25 working days to obtain the first moulded part. In
contrast, AM parts are supplied in a matter of days. Currently, the breakeven point
in terms of time occurs at production volumes of 900 units. The intrinsic material,
energy and process interactions that occur during the SLS or SLA process fundamen-
tally limit AM production speed. Future technologies, such as high-speed sintering,
continuous liquid interface production or multi-jet fusion promise to launch a new
generation of machines that are much quicker than current ones. Nevertheless, while
the service business for OEMs is becoming more relevant and spare parts demand is
unpredictable, AM enables production of parts without tooling or tool-less produc-
tion, generating less inventory and inexpensive design modification, thus increasing
availability, reducing service operation costs and making delivery time faster. On
the other end, Fig. 4 shows a case study of an AM industrial application enabled
104 I. Flores Ituarte et al.

Fig. 3 Delivery time of conventional manufacturing versus AM to produce a mobile phone struc-
tural component in pre-series production. Adapted from (Flores Ituarte et al. 2016a, b)

Injection moulding (1 var.) Injection moulding (10 var.)

Injection moulding (20 var.) SLS (PA12)
Unit cost of production [€/unit]





Production Volume [units]

Fig. 4 Economic impact of product variations in conventional manufacturing versus AM

by ‘mass-customization’. The object of the case study was the redesigned joint of a
novel customizable gripper system, responsible for holding large components during
the transportation of car body parts in a factory line—more specifically, the AM com-
ponent element that adjusts the positioning angle of the gripper allowing multiple
configurations by means of a parametric CAD model of the coupling and its digital
manufacturing using SLS.
The data shows that the unit costs of AM-produced parts remain constant regard-
less of the amount of variations. In the case of injection moulding, the cost of the
final component depends on the number of necessary moulds to produce all varia-
tions of the part. During this case study, the designer and factory estimated the need
to produce more than 10 coupling variations. To this end, design engineers should
have a holistic perspective to evaluate the impact of product variation and be able
to justify AM applications based on it (Schroder et al. 2015). In conclusion, AM
Additive Manufacturing Validation Methods, Technology Transfer … 105

Fig. 5 Case studies. Part consolidation. Adapted from (Flores Ituarte et al. 2016a)

can reduce the capital tied to inventories and its carrying cost, as well as its part’s
obsolescence, by a build-to-order scheme (Khajavi et al. 2014).
On top of the mentioned enablers for AM technology transfer (i.e. reduction
of lead-time enabled by AM for ‘manufacturing of few’ and design modifications,
product variations and ‘mass-customization’), newly trained design engineers should
take full advantage of AM to be able to improve the product overall functional
behaviour using the ‘complexity advantage’ of AM methods. This process can be
distinguished into two areas. First, to simplify product assemblies by means of part
consolidation and be able to integrate all the complexity of the mechanisms into a
minimal set of elements while maintaining its functionality (Rosen 2014). Second, by
topology optimization (i.e. structural optimization using lattice or cellular structures)
to decrease weight and maximize stiffness (Tang and Zhao 2016) or to optimize mass
and heat transfer efficiency in industrial applications (Aslam Bhutta et al. 2012).
Figure 5 shows two cases of AM applications and technology transfer enabled
by part consolidation. For example, Fig. 5a presents a structural element of a coin-
sorting system in ticketing systems for public transport. The functional behaviour
of the structural elements required multiple connection points for the assembly of
sensing, optics and servomotors, as well as other mechanisms that provide the final
performance of the product. Figure 5b shows the manufacturing for end-use applica-
tions of a nozzle for an air flushing application. The new constructions reduced the
amount of components and simplified its topology to fulfil its intended function, dras-
tically reducing the amount of parts and assembly operations. The original designs
were assemblies of multiple components (i.e. aluminium and plastic moulded com-
ponents). In both examples, the parts are redesigned for AM and produced additively
by SLS using nylon (PA12) material.
As shown in the previous two cases, the simplification of mechanical systems
using part consolidation can become a factor in technology transfer. There are many
other commercial examples, for instance, the firm Kuhn-Stoff reduced the number of
components in a complex mechanical gripper from twenty-one to a single element
(Kuhnstoff 2012), or Boeing, who uses simplified air ducting systems in commercial
aircraft applications produced by SLS (Lyons 2011). These new consolidated solu-
106 I. Flores Ituarte et al.

Fig. 6 Case studies. Optimization of geometry for mass and heat transfer applications. Injection
moulding metal tooling application

tions have become viable since AM allows the simplification of the overall system
and at the same time reduces the need for assembly operation and inventories with
a positive impact on cost. In addition, the new designs are lighter and its technical
performance was enhanced. With this in mind, newly trained design engineers should
focus on mapping AM-compatible systems and components that can be improved in
terms of functionality by reducing the number of assembly parts and consolidating
the design into primary key elements, while keeping the overall functionality intact.
The benefits of this idea are substantial. For example, the aerospace and aeronauti-
cal industry achieved improvements in the Buy-to-Fly ratio (i.e. reducing the weight
ratio between the raw material used for a component and the weight of the component
itself). This is especially relevant for precious materials such as titanium. In addition,
the weight reduction of other metal and plastic parts by optimization is technically
and economically beneficial over the lifecycle of the aircraft.
Figure 6 shows case studies of AM applications and technology transfer enabled
by topology optimization to enhance heat transfer. Figure 6 describes an exploratory
case study to manufacture a metal tooling application with integrated conformal
cooling for plastic injection moulding (i.e. internal manufacturing complexity). The
study was performed to replace an obsolete tooling set manufactured by conventional
methods and to use PBF in the context of conformal cooled injection moulding tools.
The test results in this regard were favourable, and the new tool was able to improve
efficiency of the tool due to lower cycle times in the injection moulding process.
However, to achieve the desired final form, PBF-produced parts are rarely usable
without post-machining, as tooling components in most cases require a good surface
quality only achievable with fine machining. Therefore, AM technology transfer
often requires its integration with conventional manufacturing and quality control
The second case, Fig. 7 presents wilful ignorance of traditional manufacturing
restrictions to create a heat exchanger that maximizes the benefits of the AM com-
Additive Manufacturing Validation Methods, Technology Transfer … 107

Fig. 7 Case studies. Optimization of geometry for mass and heat transfer applications. Heat
exchanger application

plexity advantage. Ignoring the limitations of conventional manufacturing methods,

the new geometry consists of 144 very narrow pipes that are placed next to each
other, alternating between hot and cold pipes. The convergence of the many chan-
nels into four main flow ports was done via a lattice and chamber method, in which
the cold pipes flow into the lattice and the hot pipes continue through the gaps of
the lattice and reach the chamber. This type of design makes it possible to reach
heat exchange efficiencies more than ten times higher than with traditional counter-
flow heat exchangers. The manufacturing process of the new design is also more
streamlined in comparison with traditional heat exchangers, which require extensive
assembly. The heat exchanger presented here requires no post-processing other than
the removal from the build plate, heat treatment to get rid of residual stresses left over
from the AM process, and threading the flow ports for connectors. In fact, machining
the part to achieve better surface quality would be detrimental to the performance
of the heat exchanger because the inherent surface roughness of the selective laser
melting process is beneficial due to the increased surface area and improved flow

2.3 How to Justify Technology Implementation? Steps

Towards Technology Transfer

Currently, many of the industry-driven technology evaluation programs on AM tech-

nology transfer are interlinked with the replacement, redesign or repair of components
for legacy systems. For example, in spare-part applications or retrofitting existing
obsolete machine components. However, the traditional approach for design and
manufacture are based on conventional manufacturing constrains. In this regard, the
materials are highly standardized (e.g. ASTM steel, aluminium, casted iron, etc.),
and manufacturing processes (e.g. subtractive and forming methods) of the legacy
systems are well known and mature. When trying to justify the implementation of
108 I. Flores Ituarte et al.

AM materials to replace component or parts in a similar legacy system, the logical

top-down engineering process is to compare the functional requirement of the orig-
inal design. Thus, engineers evaluate the material properties (e.g. tensile strength,
elongation at break, impact strength, etc.) and Geometrical and Dimensional Toler-
ances (e.g. GD&T) obtained by a conventional process with those obtained by AM.
However, the outcome of this approach is that parts manufactured additively are of
inferior quality and more expensive in comparison and will limit AM to prototyping
applications. The cases presented in Figs. 1 and 2 demonstrate that AM manufac-
turing implementation based on manufacturing cost reduction will not become a
viable option for medium or high volume production. The justification of AM tech-
nology transfer based on cost parameters will only be possible in the production of
one-of-a-kind, very small production lots or the ‘manufacturing of few’.
A different approach and potentially more beneficial for the design engineering
process is to consider the full product life cycle involved in traditional manufacturing
methods. For example, the reduction of delivery time can boost AM applications
(i.e. availability for low volume production, bridge manufacturing and production
on demand). In many occasions, technology transfer can be justified exclusively
focusing on AM as a faster solution to produce a few parts, for example, when
tooling or parts are not readily available for short volume production, as in the case
presented in Fig. 3. AM can reduce the lead time in new product introductions
or in the provision of spare parts for the manufacturing of low volumes. Another
factor is the possibility of ‘mass-customization’ of industrial components or complete
systems. The case presented in Fig. 4 shows how the impact of design modification
shifts the economical breakeven point to the right in a linear manner. To this end,
during the design engineering process of new mechanical systems, the engineering
team should have a holistic perspective to evaluate the impact of product variation,
thus being able to simplify the manufacturing process as well as the design by the
implementation of highly customizable AM key mechanical components. A similar
approach can be used when using functional optimization. The cases presented in
the previous section show how an improved performance can be achieved in terms of
simplified mechanical constructions. The cases in Fig. 5 show how two consolidated
solutions have become viable since AM allowed the simplification of the overall
system. In addition, the topology optimization cases in Fig. 6a and the functional
optimization case in Fig. 6b demonstrates how traditional geometrical limitations of
subtractive methods of production can be overcome, thus, allowing the production
of key components with an increased value in terms of performance.
Figure 8 shows a summary of the key enablers for AM technology transfer. To
justify AM implementation in production activities, the design engineering process
should look at these three interlinked parameters in a holistic manner (i.e. cost, time
and functionality). If we only look at the cost, AM will only allow the ‘manufacturing
of few’, ramp-up manufacturing or the production of one-of-a-kind components. To
this end, AM-enabled tool-less production will have a positive impact on the upfront
of manufacturing ramp-up. Second, the time parameter can become an enabler for
AM implementation due to the increased availability to produce parts on demand.
Many times AM can become a faster solution when tooling and parts are not read-
Additive Manufacturing Validation Methods, Technology Transfer … 109

Fig. 8 Summary of the key enablers in the integration of AM in industrial manufacturing operations

ily available when they are needed. In this regard, AM can enable the reduction of
lead time in low and medium production and new product introductions. In addition,
parts can be manufactured only when needed, thus reducing cost and simplifying
logistics utilizing digital inventories as well as the reduction of Stock Keeping Units
(SKUs). Finally, improved functionality becomes the key parameter that makes AM
truly competitive versus other conventional manufacturing methods. For example,
industrial ‘mass-customization’ combines the low unitary costs of mass-production
processes with the flexibility of individual customization. On the other hand, the
‘complexity advantage’ allows improved product performance by topology opti-
mization to decrease weight, maximize stiffness and mass/heat transfer efficiency. In
addition, part consolidation can simplify designs into primary key elements. Another
advantage in the future of AM technology transfer is its role in the digitalization of
manufacturing. In this context, AM inherently supports digital manufacturing. AM
benefits are the increased control of the manufacturing process (i.e. digitalized infor-
mation flow and material flow) and the possibility to develop distributed models of
production on demand. However, to allow future distributed manufacturing models
to be implemented, there is a need to develop a network of AM services with the
ability to post-process the parts to meet engineering requirements and a network of
trustworthy material suppliers.

3 Conclusions and Future Perspectives

AM has evolved from a marginal technology to an important tool for resolving engi-
neering challenges. If we look at the fundamentals of successful technology transfer,
AM intrinsically demands new knowledge in organizations as well as a different
attitude and set of rules in engineering design and manufacturing education. On one
side, the new knowledge can be costly and difficult to assimilate in companies. On
the other side, it also stresses management, leadership and decision-making roles,
110 I. Flores Ituarte et al.

especially for small and medium-size OEMs that lack R and D capabilities and capi-
tal for long-term investments. AM technologies clearly benefit from strategies based
on economies of scope and customer integration in the value chain. The industrial-
ization of AM systems is an ongoing endeavour, as the transition from ‘economies
of scale to economies of one’ is becoming a reality in many industrial domains.
Design engineering education should transmit the idea that AM cannot be the uni-
versal replacement for traditional manufacturing methods; AM requires integration
with conventional manufacturing plants and automation of processes. However, it has
become an important value-adding manufacturing method for high-end design appli-
cations and manufacturing of complex mechanical key components. AM will replace
conventional manufacturing in cases where the production volume of the intended
product is small or unknown and where the ability to rapidly adapt the production
needs become a fundamental variable. In addition, the key parameter for successful
technology transfer is to find industrial applications that can be improved in perfor-
mance (e.g. mass-customization, complexity advantage, part consolidation, topology
optimizations, etc.). We anticipate the huge potential for growth of AM applications in
traditional OEMs, especially in manufacturing applications from which completely
new products and processes can be innovated. The education of a new engineering
workforce should apply AM education and concepts to relatively small and highly
complex plastic components and incrementally open up to applications for larger
and metallic components. The engineering schools should present a clear picture
of the economical side of new technology investment. AM materials and machine
costs will still be a barrier for technology transfer. However, AM requires adopting a
broad perspective on time. During the design engineering process, one should con-
sider the full production lifecycle involved in traditional manufacturing methods, as
the availability of AM-produced parts, reduction of SKUs, time-to-market as well as
delivery lead times can become fundamental in the service operation of manufactur-
ing companies. In summary, newly trained design engineers should evaluate AM in
end-manufacturing applications by looking at the interlinks between AM cost struc-
tures, the availability and delivery time of AM, and the increased functionality of
products enabled by AM methods in comparison with established methods of design
and production.


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Iñigo Flores Ituarte (PhD) is an early stage scholar and Post-Doctoral researcher at Aalto Univer-
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112 I. Flores Ituarte et al.

integration of Additive Manufacturing technologies into industrial processes. He received his doc-
toral degree in 2017 at Aalto University. In his academic activity, starting 2014, he has published
more than 15 scientific publications and contributed to several books. His research activities are
mostly problem-based and industry-motivated from where he combines theory and practice to
evaluate critically the future role of modern Additive Manufacturing technologies.

Niklas Kretzschmar, M.Sc. is a PhD candidate at Aalto University (Finland) in the Department
of Production Engineering. His research focuses on technical and economic additive manufactur-
ing applications. He is currently working on technology transfer and support methods to validate
additive manufacturing applications, digital spare parts, bioprinting as well as design for additive
manufacturing approaches using the TRIZ methodology and axiomatic design to optimize specific
components. He has received an MSc in Mechanical Engineering and Management from the Tech-
nical University of Munich (TUM) in 2015 and has worked in the manufacturing industry before
starting his PhD.

Sergei Chekurov, M.Sc. is working towards the degree of Doctor of Science in the field of Addi-
tive Manufacturing at the School of Engineering of Aalto University. His current focus is on
hydraulic and heat transfer applications of AM and extension of Design for AM frameworks.

Jouni Partanen (PhD) is a Professor of Advanced Production Technologies and the Head of
Mechanical Engineering Department in Aalto University. He is an academic scientist and an expe-
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production and product management. Dr. Jouni Partanen has been a key equipment developer for
3D Systems in California, the leading Additive Manufacturing Technology company in the world.
He is named as an inventor in more than 50 patents issued internationally in the most significant
high technology markets. His academic career spans from university and research laboratory posi-
tions in Finland, England and California. He has more than 100 publications with over 2000 cita-
tions (Google Scholar, H-index of 29), including articles in leading scientific journals, like Nature
and Physical Review Letters.

Jukka Tuomi, Lic.Sc. (Tech.) is research manager in Aalto University and he is President of
Finnish 3D Printing network FIRPA (Finnish Rapid Prototyping Association). He has written over
50 scientific papers, book chapters and conference proceeding articles about 3D Printing, Addi-
tive Manufacturing (AM), 3D Modeling and Product and Production Development. He has been
international scientific committee member in over 20 conferences and he has presented in over 50
international conferences and seminars in about 20 different countries worldwide. Jukka Tuomi is
representing Aalto University in European Institute of Technology and Innovation (EIT) Digital
Industry program project. EIT Digital is a leading European digital innovation and entrepreneurial
education organizsation driving Europe’s digital transformation.

External Resources: Aalto University is a Finnish multidisciplinary university founded in 2010

by merging The Helsinki School of Economics, The University of Art and Design Helsinki, and
Helsinki University of Technology (which is the formerly independent Helsinki University of
Technology, the second-oldest university in Finland and the leading Finnish university of tech-
nology). The research group in Advanced Production Technologies under the school of Engineer-
ing that works in externally funded research closely with diverse industrial partners in developing
solutions for industrial and medical applications of Additive Manufacturing and laser based man-
ufacturing systems. http://mecheng.aalto.fi/en.
FoFAM and AM-Motion Initiatives: A
Strategic Framework for Additive
Manufacturing Deployment in Europe

Paula Queipo and David Gonzalez

1 Introduction

Among the most innovative manufacturing solutions of the last decade, additive man-
ufacturing (AM) technologies have been identified as one of the most promising pro-
duction technologies at global level. They are considered to empower the transition
from mass production to mass customization in several leading sectors. AM tech-
nologies are mainly concerned with “high-performance manufacturing” and were
identified as a segment with “particular high growth potential” and a global market
volume of 2.2 billion (Bn) dollars in 2012 (European Commission 2014). The global
AM industry grew 17.4% (CAGR—Compound Annual Growth Rate) to $6.063 Bn
in 2016 (Wohlers et al. 2017). By 2018, Wholers et al. (2017), forecasts the sale of
AM products and services to reach nearly $9.5 billion worldwide. OECD (2016) has
recently identified AM as one of the technologies enabling the digital transformation
of industrial production. Their potential for smart production and efficient processes
opens up new perspectives which are often associated with the next “Industrial Rev-
olution”, normally labelled as “Industry 4.0”. This new, digital industrial revolution
holds the promise of increased flexibility in manufacturing, mass customisation,
increased speed, better quality and improved productivity (Davies 2015). Moreover,
the digitisation of industry is having an impact on the nature of business models and
the organisation of production.
It is clear that AM brings new options for the manufacturing and materials world
and has the potential for change. Europe is aware of the importance that AM is playing
at global level and on its potential as driver for European reindustrialization. In fact,
AM has received European Commission (EC) funding since the first Framework

P. Queipo (B)
External Relations Department, PRODINTEC, Gijón, Spain
e-mail: pqr@prodintec.com
D. Gonzalez
Technology Department, PRODINTEC, Gijón, Spain

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019 113

E. Pei et al. (eds.), Additive Manufacturing—Developments in Training
and Education, https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-76084-1_8
114 P. Queipo and D. Gonzalez

Programme (FP) during time period1984–1987. The following Programmes, from

1988 to 2013, ensured continuous support from different EC services and diverse
funding programmes. In FP7 (2007–2013), more than 60 successful projects on AM
technologies were funded, with over e160 million in EC funding and a total budget
of around e225 million (European Commission 2014). In Horizon 2020, AM is
mainly positioned within the Key Enabling Technologies (KETs) area under the
Industrial Leadership pillar, which also plays an important role in helping to meet
the societal challenges. Under H2020, at least 27 AM related projects have been
launched in 2014–16, with over 113 Me in EU funding. Additional funds have also
been allocated under other H2020 areas such as the Marie Curie actions, or through
programmes such as Erasmus+, addressing skills and the labour market, or Interreg
Sudoe, focusing mainly on dissemination and networking.
Nevertheless, aside from the existing knowledge portfolio and expertise, it has
been demonstrated that exploitation is far from its maximum potential due to many
and complex factors including lack of information, competences, market access,
resources, cost-effectiveness or simply because interlinking with other regions or
sectors was not considered. Thus, the adoption of AM by European end-users’ indus-
tries is currently slow (Renda 2017). There is an urgent need to take steps forward in
a coordinated strategy by bridging complementary capabilities and resources across
Member States/regions and boost the results obtained so far, particularly from the
efforts and funds put in by public-private partnerships, reducing further industriali-
sation and commercialization barriers. For this purpose, it is necessary to know the
global picture AM on European innovation projects and research activities, stake-
holders and its capabilities and the missing competencies around these technologies
in the first place.

2 FoFAM and AM-Motion: Strategic Actions

In order to properly meet the existing AM implementation challenges of today, several

issues need still to be addressed, including cross-sectorial strategic needs and broader
socioeconomic challenges going beyond the technological gaps, which hinder the
further development. Furthermore, AM industrial deployment can be improved by
addressing policy measures, skills, regulatory and standardisation gaps as well as
exploring the European business context. To be able to achieve this goal a robust,
coordinated sustained strategy at European level is needed. Actions in this direction
are being carried out mainly under the framework the European Additive Manu-
facturing Technology Platform (AM Platform) since its creation in 2007 (www.
rm-platform.com). This Platform is a hub and a network for all subjects related to
Additive Manufacturing/3D printing and counts with more than 530 members (54%
from industry) from 19 European countries (data June 2017). Lately, the strategic
actions FoFAM (2015–2016) and AM-motion (2016–2018), associated to this plat-
form have accelerated the process. Both initiatives are H2020 funded projects. Initial
one was FoFAM, starting in 2015 with a consortium of four partners and a bud-
FoFAM and AM-Motion Initiatives: A Strategic Framework … 115

Fig. 1 Value chain’s segments established in FoFAM and AM-motion strategic actions

get of 348.210 e. This project is followed by AM-motion at the end of 2016, with
13 partners and a budget of 993.052 e. The ambition is to connect, structure and
scale-up the fragmented and under-used European AM capacities. They address fun-
damental aspects (technological and non-technological) relating to the uptake and
deployment of AM with focus in seven key most promising sectors where AM inno-
vations can have higher impact in Europe and parts and products can truly benefit. The
selected initial sectors, covering mature and less mature application areas, are health,
aerospace, automotive, consumer goods and electronics. In a second step, industrial
equipment and tooling, energy and construction were added. As the adoption of the
technology grows, the value and potential of AM for promising applications and the
industrial deployment for the technology can vary from one sector to another. Thus,
it is required to analyse them from the individual perspective while also detecting
the cross-cutting barriers and needs. This activity led to each of the sectors being
analysed along the value chain (VC) in order to find the gaps preventing complete
market deployment. Value chains as such are defined as the full range of activities
undertake to bring a product or a service from its conception to its end use by final
consumers (OECD 2012). The approach followed considered the all the steps: from
modelling, design, to process (including equipment and ICT), product development
(including quality assessment and testing) and end of life (Fig. 1).
Both technological and non-technological gaps identified have been gathered in
the AM roadmap (FoFAM 2016). The roadmap has been designed with the aim to
offer a strategy for building the fundamental knowledge and actions necessary to
accelerate the design, application and implementation in the market of AM. Further-
more, it facilitates to establish a common vision and actions’ alignment around the
different challenges and the existing project results. It reflects the opportunities and
market trends identified, in combination with the AM-related technologies capabili-
ties and enablers localised within the key European AM-related projects. A number
of challenges are identified that cut across all initial sectors. With regards techno-
logical gaps (Fig. 2), main actions in the short term focus on the development of
accurate, fast modelling and simulation tools from design to part, design guidelines
and rules, real-time in-process faster measurement techniques to enable total control
and methods for qualification and certification of AM products. In the medium term,
116 P. Queipo and D. Gonzalez

Fig. 2 Summary of technological cross-cutting gaps identified for the short (2017–2020) Medium
(2020–2025) and long (2025-beyond) terms

the integration of AM technologies into existing industrial processes/chains is of key

importance. Integration in the shop floor requires attention, as AM machines do not
normally stand alone in factories. Combination with other machinery (e.g. subtrac-
tive, metallization, inspection, assembly) allows complex process chains and highly
functional products, thus higher value and possible sale prices.
Non-technological gaps (Fig. 3), covering areas such as communication, education
and training, standardisation, business models or regulation, are also considered as
there are also critical factors to seep up the AM uptake. Gaps highlighted in general,
deal with an effective communication strategy to industry on the real benefits and
impact of these technologies, development business models to show what is possible
with AM, standards engagement and actions dealing with education and training.
The creation of a suitable intellectual property framework is also included for the
long term.
Following this exercise, specific challenges are identified and actions to overcome
them are designed per sector. As an example, prioritised actions for the health sector
deal with the further availability and reliability of biocompatible materials and via-
FoFAM and AM-Motion Initiatives: A Strategic Framework … 117

Fig. 3 Summary of non-technological cross-cutting gaps identified for the short (2017–2020)
Medium (2020–2025) and long (2025-beyond) terms

bility of fabrication process at industrial level. In the aerospace, linked with the cross-
cutting gaps, modelling tools development and materials with improved functional-
ities are needed. Moreover, actions in the process control and strict standardisation
of production chain are also highlighted. Same value chain approach was followed
for the successful identification of expertise along each specific segment of these
chains. Single actors are more and more challenged to get all the necessary knowl-
edge, competences and technology around AM. Mapping actors and capabilities
along the value chain can facilitate partnerships for cooperation between companies,
searching for solutions and stakeholders providing the technology, decreasing ini-
tial investments/risks and accelerating the industrialization process. Thus, identifying
the necessary VC partners facilitates a quicker implementation and maximise mutual
benefits. Hence, boosting smart cooperation between individuals and at regional level
in each of the sectors mentioned above with the target of pooling expertise together
while avoiding duplication of efforts and funds. A one-stop shop for mapping the
AM ecosystem in a form of e-tool/database has been created and it is being popu-
lated (http://rm-platform.com/index.php/am-database). The tool combines a project,
stakeholders and regions database with cluster functions along sectors, value chain
segments, AM process and materials and non-technological activities performed.
This tool helps to create a clear picture on how AM is integrated in the VC’s sectors
and where the specific needed knowledge is located in order to identify synergies
and facilitate its exploitation. From the European AM-related project analysis on the
118 P. Queipo and D. Gonzalez

Fig. 4 European AM-related projects registered on the AM e-tool per leading country

48 projects currently registered in the AM e-tool (Fig. 4) (data from March 2018), it
can be seen most of the identified projects are coordinated by two countries: United
Kingdom and Spain (21%), followed by Germany (15%) and Italy (13%). Project’s
analysed cover calls from 2010 to 2016, mainly on FP7 and H2020 Factories of the
Future (FoF) and NMP programmes.
In Fig. 5, the sectorial distribution of projects is shown. Most tackled sectors
are aerospace (19%), automotive (18%) and health (17%). The majority of projects
registered covered a minimum of two sectors.
Regarding the value chain segments, normally single projects address several
within their activities (Fig. 6). Activities related to the process, including equipment
and ICT aspects, are considered the main segment (20%) while the activities related
to the end of life not contemplated, except on those projects covering all segments
Powder bed fusion (20%) and direct energy deposition (17%) are the most
commonly developed processes. Regarding materials, results show that 49% of the
projects deal with metals, 27% of them address polymers and 12% ceramics (Fig. 7).
373 stakeholders are also registered in the database. Main concentration is found
in United Kingdom (15.3%), followed by Germany (14.2%) and Spain (13.7%),
France and Italy (both around 10%) (Fig. 8). These results are aligned with the leading
European countries indicated in the European Commission study on the identification
current and future application areas for 3D printing (European Commission-EASME
2016). Moreover, alignment of these data with the leaders in European projects
FoFAM and AM-Motion Initiatives: A Strategic Framework … 119

Fig. 5 European AM-related projects on the AM e-tool per sector

Fig. 6 European AM-related projects on the AM e-tool per value chain segment

(Fig. 4) is found, except in the case of France. Further investigations when more
projects are registered should be carried out.
Regarding the distribution of actors per sector of expertise (Fig. 9), it is observed
that the majority of actors registered in the database have expertise in more than one
sector. It appears quite equally spread among the four initial selected sectors: health
120 P. Queipo and D. Gonzalez

Fig. 7 European AM-related projects on the AM e-tool a per type of process and b material

and consumer goods (15%), followed by automotive and aerospace (14%), with also
10% of the actors tackling all sectors. Industrial equipment and tooling, energy and
construction sectors, considered in the second phase of the initiatives, appear now at
very low percentages.
26% actors situated themselves in the product VC segment while 23% cover all
of the VC (Fig. 10).
FoFAM and AM-Motion Initiatives: A Strategic Framework … 121

Fig. 8 AM-related actors registered at the AM e-tool per country (data in %)

Fig. 9 AM-related actors on the AM e-tool per sector

3 The Regional Framework and Policies

Regions can also play a key role in the AM deployment. They support the leverage for
economic growth and jobs in key sectors of Europe by managing the European Struc-
tural and Investment Fund (ESIF) accounting for e454 bn for 2014–2020. Priorities
122 P. Queipo and D. Gonzalez

Fig. 10 AM-related actors on the AM e-tool per value chain segment

for spending this budget are identified via the Smart Specialisation Strategies, com-
monly known as RIS3. Smart specialisation is an innovative policy concept which
emphasises the principle of prioritisation to favour some technologies/fields of com-
petitive strength to allow a more efficient use of structural funds and to increase
synergies between European, national and regional authorities (Foray and Goenega
2013). Since 2013, half of the regions have placed ‘Advanced Manufacturing’ as
one of the key priorities within their regional strategy, with some of them focusing
specifically on AM (http://s3platform.jrc.ec.europa.eu/s3-platform).
In 2013, ten regions, driven by a political commitment, initiated the Van-
guard initiative using their RIS3 strategy to boost new growth through bottom-up
entrepreneurial innovation and industrial renewal in European priority areas (http:/
/www.s3vanguardinitiative.eu/). This initiative launched five pilot actions, amongst
which one focused on ‘High- Performance Production through 3D Printing’. The ulti-
mate objective of this pilot platform is the construction of a network of industry-led
demonstrators across regions in Europe to enhance the uptake of solutions provided
by 3D-printing technologies in international value chains. Currently, the following
22 regions, from 10 countries, are involved in this pilot:
• Austria: Upper-Austria
• Belgium: Flanders, Wallonia
• Finland: Tampere
• France: Auverge Rhône-Alpes, Nord-Pas-de-Calais
• Germany: North Rhine-Westphalia, Baden—Württemberg, Saxony, Thuringia
• Italy: Emilia-Romagna, Lombardy
FoFAM and AM-Motion Initiatives: A Strategic Framework … 123

• Poland: Malopolska
• Portugal: Norte
• Spain: Andalucia, Aragon, Asturias, Cataluña
• Sweden: Skane, Örebro Län
• The Netherlands: South-Netherlands, Randstad region.
To reinforce the regional initiatives, the Smart Specialisation Platform for Indus-
trial Modernisation (S3P-Industry) was launched by the European Commission (http:
//s3platform.jrc.ec.europa.eu/industrial-modernisation). It aims at supporting EU
regions committed to generating a pipeline of industrial investment projects following
a bottom-up approach, through implementation through interregional cooperation,
cluster participation and industry involvement. The S3P-Industry is co-developed and
co-led by the regions themselves, hence ensuring an active participation and com-
mitment of the so-called quadruple helix actors, i.e. industry and related business
organisations such as clusters, as well as research institutions, academia and civil
society. The five pilot actions developed within Vanguard are now part of the thematic
areas to be developed under this Platform. Both FoFAM and AM-motion projects
consider the initiatives described above and the regions relevance and involve them
within their activities and tools. The target is to facilitate AM research and innova-
tion policies coordination, efficient use of resources, capabilities and infrastructure
and to promote interregional collaboration based on the RIS3 strategies. Region’s
profiles are also being included in the e-tool described above in order to be able
to connect regions needs and capabilities, identifying missing competencies and
promising areas around the sectorial VCs. Key regional projects and initiatives such
as clusters or networks are also being mapped and classified around sectors and VCs
segments. Aside from the mapping, identification of best practices and analysis of
possible combination of European-regional funds for AM implementation will take

4 Conclusions

Europe, at both a political and industrial level, possesses great potential to become
a world leader in the development and deployment of additive manufacturing tech-
nology. Future policies and funding strategies at regional, national and European
level should support a coordinated strategy by generating and exploiting connections
and complementarities between stakeholders, regional capabilities and innovation
projects. Alignment of efforts towards industrialization is a key point to accelerate
the deployment of these technologies. The lack of coordination can dilute public and
private investments making Europe in a weaker position regarding international AM
initiatives and competitors. In the framework of FoFAM and AM-motion projects,
several actions are done to create a collaborative environment that helps to bring
technology advancements from the lab to the factory floor and to bridge comple-
mentary capabilities across Europe. An online AM mapping tool, based in a sectorial
124 P. Queipo and D. Gonzalez

value chain (VC) approach and including information on key projects, stakeholders
and regions is available and being constantly populated. This global overview on
European capabilities allows untapping AM existing potential and having access to
current knowledge and experts from all over Europe, capable of increasing the val-
orisation of public and private AM resources, research and innovation. Identifying
the necessary VC partners facilitates a quicker implementation and maximise mutual
benefits. In the path to the common vision and strategy an AM roadmap with clear
actions is developed and updated. Technological and non-technological aspects are
both considered to avoid any barrier during the market deployment.

Acknowledgements FoFAM and AM-motion projects have received funding from the European
Union Horizon 2020 Programme (H2020) under grant agreements no. 636882 and 723560, respec-


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Dr. Paula Queipo is the Director of the External Relations Department at PRODINTEC Tech-
nology Center and deals with international project management, communication, networking and
technology transfer activities. She obtained the Ph.D. degree in Materials Science and Technology
in 2003 from the University of Oviedo (Spain). She has extended her R and D skills in several
European entities such as Abo Akademi, VTT and Technical University of Technology (Finland),
University of Leeds (UK), and CSIC and University of Oviedo (Spain). She belongs to the Man-
agement Boards of the European Technology platforms on additive manufacturing, AM-Platform,
and nanotechnology, NANOfutures.

Dr. David Gonzalez, Chemist and Ph.D. in the Materials Science, has more than 10 years expe-
rience as researcher in academic and industrial contexts in entities such as CSIC (Spain), Manch-
ester Material Science Centre and Institute of Food Research (UK) and VTT and Technical Uni-
versity of Technology (Finland). He has robust experience in management of R and D projects at
national and international level. He is an innovation expert for international institutions in Spain,
Europe and LATAM countries. Author of more than 50 articles related to research and innovation
in the abovementioned areas of knowledge. He is the co-owner of two patents in nanotechnology.
Today, he is Head of the Technology Department at PRODINTEC.

External Resources: PRODINTEC is a private technology centre specialized in industrial design

and advanced production. It fosters the competitiveness of industrial firms by applying technolog-
ical advances both to their products and to their manufacturing and management processes. Since
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knowledge on these technologies all along the value chain, from design to product. Currently, it
is focused at innovation projects, industrialisation of AM and training. http://www.prodintec.es.
The Machine Tool Industry’s Changing
Skills Needs: What is the Impact of
Additive Manufacturing Technologies?

Filip Geerts and Vincenzo Renda

List of Abbreviations

AM Additive Manufacturing
CAD Computer-aided Design
CAM Computer-aided Manufacturing
CECIMO European Association of the Machine Tool Industries
CNC Computerized Numerical Control
CT Computed Tomography
EU European Union
ICT Information and Communication Technology
METALS MachinE Tool ALliance for Skill
MT Machine Tool
NC Numerical Control
R&D Research and Development

1 Technological Evolution of the Machine Tool Industry:

From Subtractive to Additive Manufacturing

CECIMO, the European Association of the Machine Tool Industries, uses the fol-
lowing definition for a machine tool (EMO 2015): ‘a metal working machine tool
is a power-driven, not portable by hand, powered by an external source of energy,
designed specifically for metalworking either by cutting, forming, physical-chemical
processing, or a combination of these techniques.’ Machine tools are known as

F. Geerts (B) · V. Renda

CECIMO—European Association of the Machine Tool Industries, Avenue Louise,
66, 1050 Brussels, Belgium
e-mail: filip.geerts@cecimo.eu

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019 127

E. Pei et al. (eds.), Additive Manufacturing—Developments in Training
and Education, https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-76084-1_9
128 F. Geerts and V. Renda

‘mother machines’ and they enable the production of all other machines including
themselves (Hitomi 1996, p. 432).
The sketch of a lathe drawn by Leonardo da Vinci’s in the fifteenth century is
considered among the first examples of wheel-driven lathes in history. Machine
tools then played instrumental roles in the eighteenth century, amid industry-fuelled
growth that characterized the Industrial Revolution (Ashburn 1988). The Numeri-
cal Control (NC) machines were developed in the late 1940s and 1950s by linking
computers to production machinery. This allowed for the automation of machine
tools. The introduction of digital controls technology and computers in the 1960s
gave rise to computerized numerical control (CNC) machines which enabled to con-
trol the movements of the machines for performing the metalworking process. CNC
machines reduced the human interaction required in different steps of the machining
process. Moreover, they have removed the need for manual work to make compli-
cated mathematical calculations required to produce shapes with high complexity
and accuracy. The computerization of metalworking technologies continued with
the introduction of computer-aided design (CAD) and computer-aided manufactur-
ing (CAM) software, which shortened the period between the design and produc-
tion process. Today, modern CNC machines are fully-automated sophisticated metal
working tools controlled by computers and they combine different types of machine
tools to produce even more complicated parts required by modern technology. These
are called machining centres and represent the state-of-the-art technology in metal-
working (Office of Technology Assessment 1984; Wilson et al. 2000).
As Ashburn (1988) underlined, machine tools have allowed for the mass produc-
tion of high-precision parts and components, which, thanks to the growth of measure-
ment techniques, have become also interchangeable. Their use is today widespread in
a range of sectors from automotive, aerospace and energy generation to mechanical
construction and medical engineering. Machine tool builders seek for differentia-
tion and sources of uniqueness by creating value for their customers through the
development of new processes and new services, which help achieve high produc-
tivity levels, meet the precision needs of their customers and help lower their costs.
European machine tool builders have a high level of technological readiness, which
means that they have the agility to adopt new technologies such as ICT to enhance
the productivity of their own production process (CECIMO 2011). The machine tool
sector (MT) has entered a new era, characterized by the emergence of new tech-
nologies such as AM. Unlike traditional manufacturing processes such as turning,
milling and grinding, Additive Manufacturing (AM) is the ‘process of joining mate-
rials to make objects from 3D model data, usually layer upon layer, as opposed to
subtractive manufacturing methodologies.’ (ISO, ASTM 2015). AM makes it possi-
ble to produce components of almost any form out of a variety of materials (plastics,
metals, sand/ceramics) without the use of tools. The cost of a component does not
necessarily increase in proportion to its complexity. Complex cooling, mixing and
lightweight geometries can be produced without generating an extra cost, even in
turbine materials difficult to process (Langefeld 2015). The geometric data of a com-
ponent is directly transferred into a product in a very short space of time. Almost
only the required quantity of material is used as is necessary for the manufacturing
The Machine Tool Industry’s Changing Skills Needs … 129

of the component, thereby saving resources. AM also allows new repair strategies
for valuable components, saving both time and money, and enables the production
of new, high-performance materials (Langefeld 2015). The sector also intensifies its
efforts into a new technology called hybrid manufacturing. The main goal of a hybrid
manufacturing approach is to take two different technologies, which both have assets
and drawbacks and to compensate their downsides while exploiting the advantages
for the optimal production solution in a more or less combined step. This can be either
on a part-level when a conventionally produced base body is enhanced by additively
manufactured structures or on a machine-level where both technologies are com-
bined in order to use their advantageous capabilities. This can be AM’s flexibility
for producing complex shapes in combination with the accuracy of milling in one
process step for example (Lindemann and Deppe 2017). The remainder of the article
analyses changing skills requirement of the sector in parallel with its technological

2 Skills Needed in the Machine Tool Industry

The machine tool industry is a knowledge- and technology-intensive sector with high
R&D intensity. Building machine tools requires a deep understanding and knowledge
of mechanical engineering, hydraulics, process knowledge, software engineering,
precision engineering design, kinematics and other disciplines. The machine tool
knowledge base builds on a multidisciplinary scientific legacy and engineering know-
how, therefore it cannot be easily acquired. The European machine tool industry,
composed of nearly 1,500 companies, employs around 150,000 people. The average
number of employees per company in is fewer than 100 (CECIMO 2015).
Qualification and skills of the labour force are vital for maintaining the global
competitiveness of the European machine tool industry. Skills are fundamental to the
design of advanced manufacturing technologies and equipment. Also, the production
process of sophisticated products requires well-trained and experienced technicians
and workers. Skilled craftsmanship, mechanical and controls designers and pro-
cess engineers, CNC operators, precision welders are the sought-after occupations
by machine tool builders. The long-standing experience and know-how developed
with demanding customers and thanks to the experience of engineers are the main
sources of the high-quality solutions provided by machine tool builders. Although
mechanical engineering is the core engineering science for the machine tool indus-
try, nowadays customers’ demand for increased efficiency, precision, digitalization,
safety and environmental performance requires combining knowledge from vari-
ous disciplines to design and build machines which respond to new challenges and
market needs. Engineers need a multi-disciplinary skill mix (pneumatic, software,
hydraulics, control, etc.) in the machine tool sector. It is important for engineers
and the technical staff to be proficient in basic design tools. However, machine tools
design and production require them to be endowed with further sophisticated skills.
Innovation in the machine tool industry occurs mainly in the software nowadays.
130 F. Geerts and V. Renda

Fig. 1 Skills needs for MT sector

Therefore, engineers need to have a strong knowledge of software and they need to
master expert systems. They need to be able to analyse complex systems and under-
stand all processes such as milling, assembly, installation and others to be able to
transfer the expertise of a machine tool into a software programme. Finally, there
will be a need for people to handle vision systems as intelligent and smart machines
(e.g. machines repairing themselves) become more common in the future.
Skills requirements in the machine tool industry have evolved fast over the past
decade, in line with changes in technology, customer needs and business environ-
ment. As products get increasingly sophisticated, employees in machine tool com-
panies need to master a multitude of technology areas and their integration, includ-
ing mechanical design, pneumatic, hydraulics, electrical design, software and NC
programming, among others. Nowadays, transversal or soft skills are becoming as
important as technical skills. This is largely due to the globalization of machine
tools markets, which implies that companies do not operate any more in a local
value chain, but in an international environment. The workforce needs to cope with
new business, cultural and legal challenges in international markets. To respond to
the needs of customers located in various geographical locations across the globe,
employees rely on transversal skills, which include inter alia entrepreneurship, com-
munication, negotiation, problem-solving, inter-cultural and language skills. In an
export-driven and customer-oriented sector like machine tools, it is essential for the
staff to understand their customers’ needs and use all available knowledge to satisfy
them (CECIMO 2013). In Fig. 1 the following different skills needs of today’s MT
workforce are included:
The Machine Tool Industry’s Changing Skills Needs … 131

3 Impact of Additive Manufacturing Technologies on the

Machine Tool Workforce

As D’Aveni (2015) summarizes, AM pushes the boundaries of parts’ design, makes

easier the production of different parts at no extra cost, minimizes manufacturing
footprint and reduces inventory costs. It can be derived a new era will be heralded
for those industries capable of employing AM. While companies’ present is charac-
terized by high warehousing and transportation costs, their future may come in the
form of flexible arrangements and closeness to the customer (Mohajeri et al. (n.d.);
KPMG 2016). Requiring minimal tooling operations and based on the creation of
finished parts directly from a digital CAD file, AM will shorten time-to-market and
open a myriad of possibilities for on-demand production (U.S. Department of Energy
2015; Ford and Despeisse 2016). As more and more investments are poured into the
development of additive technologies, the entry barriers to AM adoption are likely
to lower over time.
The EU-funded ERASMUS+ METALS—MachinE Tool ALliance for Skills
project, coordinated by CECIMO, analysed the impact of emerging technologies
on workforce skills in the machine tool industry between 2015 and 2025. In order
to do so, a two-step approach was adopted. First, a survey on relevant technologies
in the MT sector was sent to industrialists and other stakeholders. Its results high-
lighted respondents’ high expectations over the increasing importance of AM meth-
ods in the sector. With this in mind, workshops and interviews on the most relevant
skills needs in AM were conducted. Their outcome was embedded into a European
machine tool industry skills panorama that presents skills needs for AM technolo-
gies. It shows how, in the period analyzed, the AM workforce will be characterized
by a hybrid skills pool, comprising typical skills in subtractive manufacturing, new
emerging skills specific to additive machines, as well as heightened soft skills. The
new competences will be concentrated in stages such as design, data pre-processing,
postprocessing, testing and maintenance. Greater soft skills in communication and
presentation will be part of this evolved skill set. They will become more acute as
growing competition in the sector will require devoting greater and greater attention
by AM system manufacturers to exploit all relevant marketing opportunities. Below
is a detailed overview of the skills impact of AM on the machine tool industry across
the different production steps.
The production of 3D-printed part needed begins with virtual design. Current
practice in this stage of the AM process is to create an optimized design of the 3D
model by using conventional CAD tools and topology optimization software (Chuang
et al. 2017). An initial design space is created, based on a range of loads and bound-
ary conditions given by the software user. Topology optimization is then applied to
this initial model. It allows for the identification of irrelevant material for the part
to be produced, leading to an optimized distribution of material in the design space
generated. The improvement of the part’s performance through topological optimiza-
tion paves the way for the final design of the part. This requires the conversion of
optimization results into a mathematical CAD representation. The opportunities that
132 F. Geerts and V. Renda

are opened up thanks to design methods in AM are multiple. Although software

technology is still under development, the advantages it offers in reducing the type
of geometry restrictions that conventional, subtractive machines face in design are
clear. For these reasons, skills in proper design will be increasingly in demand in
the machine tool industry. They will be possessed by specialized designers who will
surge in importance in the AM workforce. They will need to possess knowledge of
AM materials and processes and have competences in free surface modelling, struc-
tural calculus, topography optimization and computational thermal fluid dynamics.
These will be skills employed for conducting activities such as understanding the
needs of the client by identifying requests of the part to be designed, as well as choos-
ing the appropriate AM material for production. The entry route into the profile of
specialized designer is that of a graduate engineering program.
Next is data pre-processing and file manipulation. In this sense, the occupation of
the AM specialized designer will rise together with that of the application engineer,
with whom the former will coordinate closely. The main activities of the application
engineer will focus on the stage of data pre-processing and file manipulation, but,
crucially, will also expand to the supervision of the remainder of the production pro-
cess. Activities will entail part positioning, generation of support structures on the
build plate and, if needed, nesting of the piece to be fabricated. Also setting param-
eters, slicing and job preparation will be part of the core tasks of this occupational
profile. That of the application engineer will be an occupation requiring knowledge
of AM materials and understanding of CAM software features. It will be suitable
for individuals with extensive soft skills in decision-making and problem-solving
and, crucially, with sufficient practical experience to oversee the whole production
process. METALS’ field research put emphasis on the novelty of this profile, which
is intrinsic to the emergence of additive technologies. It also pointed out its signifi-
cance in guaranteeing the successful completion of the production process. It must
be highlighted that industrialists and stakeholders interviewed in METALS indicated
how specialized technicians with substantial experience may, in theory, be able to
cover the activities illustrated above. Yet, the lack of established procedures to con-
duct some of these tasks led them to consider a graduate engineering programme,
corroborated by extensive work-based experience, as the preferred route entry into
the application engineer profile.
The operation stage will be centred on the activities of software and hardware
set-up, monitoring of process parameters, extraction of the workpiece and visual
identification of major flaws in the additively manufactured parts fabricated. It will
be driven by strict safety standards in the workplace, especially with regards to
production with metal machines. To this extent, loading and unloading operations
will need to observe clear rules. The appropriate profile for the operation stage is that
of the specialized worker. It will be characterized by safety-minded technicians with
basic knowledge of materials, competent in emergency management and capable to
handle minor deviations of the process parameters. The route of entry into the profile
of the specialized worker is an AM-related vocational course supported by work-
based learning where the future worker interacts with an AM machine. The indication
of vocational degrees as suitable degrees to operate the AM machine suggests the
The Machine Tool Industry’s Changing Skills Needs … 133

Fig. 2 Ideal job profile for AM operation stage

type of skills learnt in a vocational context, if completed by substantial specific

experience, are sufficient for this process stage. To this extent, it must furthermore
be added that the actual build job is done automatically by the AM machine and
controlled by sensors. Figure 2 helps in summarizing what described.
In the stage of post-processing finishing operations are conducted on the additively
manufactured part produced. They envisage tasks such as metal cutting to remove
supports and similar parts (manually or through machine tools), heat treatment for
stress relieving and surface finishing, all activities typical of the conventional man-
ufacturing process. Along these, post-processing in AM includes the removal and
recycling of redundant metal powder around the part fabricated. This is a task peculiar
of the AM process and will need ad hoc training on the specific additive machine con-
sidered. The appropriate profile for the post-processing stage is that of the specialized
worker earlier involved in operation. The skills required in AM post-processing are
those equivalent to a machine tool operator or those necessary for the use of indus-
trial ovens and other finishing equipment. The stage of testing involves activities
generally common in conventional manufacturing. It revolves around dimensional,
destructive and non-destructive testing. Yet, in the latter group, it will also require
specific expertise in the area of computed tomography (CT), where potential flaws
in the AM process are identified. This activity will demand extensive knowledge of
AM materials and processes. The appropriate profile for the testing and control stage
is that of the metrologist, which will perform its activities either in a dedicated area
of the factory in a specialized center outside the factory premises. Concerning the
maintenance stage, one has first to distinguish between ordinary and extraordinary
maintenance of the additive machine. In the former case, the work consists in rou-
tinely cleaning up and upkeeping the machine. Activities are conducted normally
during the set-up of hardware and are done in-house. The latter case instead refers
to extraordinary diagnostic work on the AM machine, conducted approximatively
every six months, aimed to solve any potential non-functioning or failure of the
machine. Such activities outside the daily routine require specific knowledge and
competences. To this extent, the end-user of the machine normally relies on special-
ized maintenance personnel sent by the supplier to the manufacturing facility where
the machine is located. Were such extraordinary maintenance to be done in-house by
134 F. Geerts and V. Renda

the customer too, the staff operating the machine must follow ad hoc training courses
provided by the supplier.
It must be underlined that especially concerning the metal AM process, main-
tenance work will need to be conducted in strict observance of safety rules in the
workplace, just as operation and post-processing. This is due to the inherent risks
in the use of metal powders for production, which entail risks such as powder parti-
cles’ inhalation and potential flammability of materials like titanium. It derives that
safety adds a new specific dimension to maintenance in AM, which translates into
an evolved set of competences. Keeping high safety levels is particularly relevant in
maintenance tasks such as changing filters used during production to capture gases
potentially harmful to human health and detrimental to process efficiency. Simi-
larly, safety is the main driver for carefully handling and storing feed materials, and
guaranteeing a safe and clean work environment. Also with the rise of remote tech-
nologies, the role of maintenance workers is expected to become more and more
service-oriented. The worker needs the skills and knowledge to remotely interpret
the data into maintenance solutions. AM maintenance workers will require greater
skills in customer service and a broader understanding of the application of AM
equipment. As production processes become more international and a greater level
of integration takes place along the value chain, communication skills will be crucial
for maintenance workers. They will be expected to communicate with colleagues in
different factories and clients in different countries, with the help of smart devices.
All in all, the appropriate profile for this stage is that of the specialized maintenance
technician. Table 1 provides a summary of the different ideal job profiles and ideal
routes of entry into them earlier illustrated.
Moreover, from a general point of view, AM requires machine tool builders to
set up a cyber-physical environment connecting machines and systems by merging
production technologies with ICT. To this end, in addition to its existing expertise of
production technologies, the industry needs to increase its in-house digital capacity
with the help of software developers, big data analysts, system designers, and cyber-
security and cloud computing specialists. In parallel, the production technologists
of the sector will need to learn to interpret the data collected from AM machines
in real time to make the right decisions and perform their duties effectively in com-
plex situations. Finally, predictions of growing market competition are expected to
trigger greater emphasis on the marketing dimension of the business. Manufacturers
will pursue more and more opportunities to showcase and demonstrate their latest
products. To foster the use of AM technologies, machine demonstrations will multi-
ply in trade fairs. Workforce in AM will, therefore, improve abilities in showcasing
the machine in the exhibition’s premises. This will entail interaction with potential
users interested in it, and coordination when answering questions from potential cus-
tomers. Competences of this sort will also be essential when reporting customers’
inputs at the end of exhibiting activities. Better soft skills in communication and
presentation will thus be needed by the AM workforce to successfully cope with
more developed and exhibition-oriented marketing strategies. The industry will also
need to raise a new type of sales engineers whose awareness and expertise is not
limited to selling machines. AM sales force should sell outcomes, rather than only
The Machine Tool Industry’s Changing Skills Needs … 135

Table 1 Job profiles’ matrix

AM process stage Ideal job profile Ideal route into the job
Design Specialized designer Graduate engineering
Data pre-processing and file Application engineer Graduate engineering
manipulation programme supported by
extensive work-based
Operation Specialized technician AM-related vocational course
supported by work-based
Testing and control Metrologist Multiple routes
Maintenance (ordinary) Maintenance technician Multiple routes
Maintenance (extraordinary) Specialized maintenance Multiple routes: worker sent to
workers the customer’s premises by the
AM machine supplier or
customer’s maintenance
worker with specific training
provided by the supplier

machines, by providing clear insights on how products and services create value for
AM users (CECIMO 2016).

4 Conclusions and Recommendations on Additive

Manufacturing Education

Machine tool builders’ skills challenge is not a new issue. Yet, for several reasons, the
gap between the talent needed by companies and the talent they can find is widening.
As emerged from the ongoing EU METALS project led by CECIMO, AM is expected
to be one of the most rising technologies in the MT sector in the years to come.
Workforce in the industry will therefore be impacted by such a trend. The skillset will
gradually evolve into a hybrid one, where conventional competences in subtractive
manufacturing will be coupled with new skills specific to the processes with additive
machines. These new competences will be concentrated in stages such as design, data
pre-processing, post-processing, testing and maintenance. MT builders will also pay
increasing attention to the soft skills of their workforce as well as cross-cutting
competences to maximize the opportunities of Industry 4.0 solutions.
In the higher educational field, governments should design policies that incentivize
the collaboration between MT builders and educators. Universities need to keep up
with a fast-evolving AM landscape, characterized by plenty of technological devel-
opments. A greater involvement of MT companies in higher education would allow
136 F. Geerts and V. Renda

universities to more effectively address state-of-the-art AM techniques in their teach-

ing offerings. Machine tool builders will also need to strengthen their relations with
academia and students in the fields of materials, software and information systems,
on top of production technologies, to attract new graduates for AM. Coordination
should also be sought out at EU level. To this extent, policy-makers should inten-
sify the sharing of best practices on shaping engineering curricula. There is also a
need to look at professions outside the engineering environment. As this technology
is employable in a variety of different fields, authorities should promote the inclu-
sion of AM courses in curricula such as medicine, architecture and art. This would
draw the attention of professionals such as surgeons, interior designers and sculptors
about the benefits of additively manufactured components in specific applications.
A greater integration of AM into the educational context should also be promoted at
primary, secondary and high school level. Making pupils familiar with this type of
technology and allowing them to interact with desktop 3D printers is fundamental
to equip the workforce of the future with the skills needed for a technology-driven
industrial environment.
For what concerns AM courses at VET level, there is a need strengthen work-based
education. Since Europe has a strong heritage in work-based education underpinned
by apprenticeship and traineeship programmes, decision-makers across Europe
should make further efforts to promote this model in AM VET offerings all over
the continent. Such model should also be applied to experienced workforce in the
MT industry. Insights from the EU METALS projects point to the relevance of safety
in interacting with additive machines. The attention of authorities is fundamental in
this respect, too. Supporting the development of industry-wide standards in aspects
such as powder handling and storage would, among the others, allow for a smoother
training on related skills (CECIMO 2017). Continuous learning programmes should
be incentivized and implemented with the support of authorities so that current tech-
nicians and operators interacting with conventional machines rapidly integrate new
AM competences into their skillset. There must be noted that manufacturers today
bear most of the financial burden in the implementation of up-skilling initiatives on
the workplace. Further funding from the government side is needed to support such


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Mr. Geerts is CECIMO Secretary General since 2008. Previously, he was Deputy Director for
the largest Belgian association for the technological industry, Agoria. He was also public and reg-
ulatory affairs manager for IBM Europe, Middle East and Africa as well as Secretary General
for numerous European trade associations dealing with manufacturing and the engineering sec-
tor. A commercial engineer, Mr. Geerts obtained further degrees in EU economic policy, law as
well as financial and business management from Insead Fontainebleau and Singapore, London
School of Economics, Vlerick, College of Europe, The Catholic University of Louvain-la-Neuve
and the Catholic University of Leuven. Mr. Geerts has been steering CECIMO’s policy work on
additive manufacturing for several years and has participated as speaker at a large range of high-
level conferences and panel discussions on industrial additive manufacturing across Europe. Fur-
thermore, he has published the European Additive Manufacturing Strategy for the deployment
of the technology across Europe, a policy-related publication picked up by prominent additive
manufacturing-related media and press.
138 F. Geerts and V. Renda

Mr. Renda is Innovation Policy Officer at CECIMO. He is responsible for additive manufactur-
ing policy at the organisation, engaging on EU regulatory dossiers and initiatives dealing with
issues like skills, trade, R&D and standardisation aspects of additive manufacturing. In addition to
that, Mr. Renda is in charge of implementing activities for EU additive manufacturing projects on
behalf of CECIMO. He is the editor of the CECIMO European Additive Manufacturing Strategy
and the facilitator of the CECIMO standing Working Group on additive manufacturing. The latter
is a platform gathering industry experts from leading companies in this sector as well as national
industrial associations across Europe. The Working Group addresses key EU topics for the uptake
of the technology. Prior to his engagement in CECIMO, Mr. Renda worked on European public
affairs in a funding programme of the EU Regional Policy, as well as by working in one of the
largest SME associations across the continent and for the European Confederation of the recruit-
ment industry.

External Resources: CECIMO is the association representing the Additive Manufacturing indus-
try at European level. CECIMO membership involves 15 national associations, which represent a
wide group of European additive manufacturing actors in their own country. Through all its mem-
ber countries together, CECIMO represents around 350 leading additive manufacturing actors
from all over Europe. These are active in all the segments of the value chain: from the different
materials used for additive production, software development and machine manufacturing, to oth-
ers like post-processing and final machine end-use. In addition to many companies, CECIMO’s
Additive Manufacturing community includes, too, top universities, training institutes, legal firms,
R&D centres, distributors and other relevant actors active on this technology. http://www.cecimo.
Teaching Design for Additive
Manufacturing Through Problem-Based

Olaf Diegel, Axel Nordin and Damien Motte

1 Problem-Based Learning

From various definitions of problem based learning (PBL) we find that it is most
commonly defined as a student-driven pedagogy in which students learn about a
subject through the experience of solving an open-ended problem related to certain
trigger material (Barell 2006; Aalborg 2015). Complex real-world problems are used
as a vehicle to promote student learning of concepts and principles, as opposed to
the more traditional direct presentation of facts and concepts through classroom
lectures. The PBL process does not focus just on problem solving with a defined
solution, but rather allows for the development of other desirable skills and attributes.
These, in particular, include knowledge acquisition, enhanced group collaboration
and communication (Peters et al. 2006). Though it sounds like a cliché it, effectively,
encourages students to learn how to learn. The PBL learning process involves working
in small groups of students, where each student takes on a specific role within the
group that may be sometimes formal and sometimes informal (and the role often
rotates from project to project). It is focused on the students building their own
learning from reflection and reasoning (Aalborg 2015).
In PBL, the role of the teacher is to facilitate learning by supporting, guiding, and
monitoring the learning process. The teacher must build student confidence to take on
the problem, and encourage the students, while also stretching their understanding.
This process is based on constructivism (Zemesukis Education 2017). In PBL it is
also often up to the student to determine what they need to be taught, and for the
teacher to then deliver that particular required knowledge in the most appropriate

O. Diegel (B) · A. Nordin · D. Motte

Department of Design Sciences, School of Engineering, Lund University, 22360 Lund, Sweden
e-mail: olaf.diegel@design.lth.se

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019 139

E. Pei et al. (eds.), Additive Manufacturing—Developments in Training
and Education, https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-76084-1_10
140 O. Diegel et al.

Some of the typical characteristics of good PBL problems include (Duch et al.
• The problem must motivate students to seek out a deeper understanding of con-
• The problem should require students to make reasoned decisions and to defend
• The problem should incorporate the content objectives in such a way as to connect
it to previous courses/knowledge.
• If used for a group project, the problem needs a level of complexity to ensure that
the students must work together to solve it.
• If used for a multistage project, the initial steps of the problem should be open-
ended and engaging to draw students into the problem.
Learning some theory about PBL was all well and good, but the challenge was how
teachers at Lund University could apply it in the particular context of our industry
DfAM courses at Lund University. Upon looking at how other universities have been
applying PBL, we find a very wide spectrum of application. Some universities do
not use PBL at all, and rather rely on courses that are mainly based on traditional
classroom lectures. Other universities, such as Aalborg University in Denmark, are
at the other extreme in which almost the entire course is focused on PBL (Aalborg
2015). In the case of Lund University, the decision was made to use a hybrid model
in which half the course was delivered using a standard class-room approach, and
the other half was delivered using problem-based learning.

2 Design for Additive Manufacturing

Design for additive manufacturing (DfAM) is about the particular design techniques
that need to be developed in order to maximize the potential benefits of additive
manufacturing. Part production using AM brings both benefits and challenges to
engineers and designers. Parts can be made with great complexity, and process con-
siderations are less prominent and very different to those of conventional manufac-
turing. Designers also have the opportunity to create more design variations, and
specific parts in a product can be tailored to markets around the world, different
target customer groups, or even to individual customers. A product can, for example,
have standard internal parts, produced through conventional manufacturing, and a
customer-specific external shape made by AM (Wohlers et al. 2017).
Although AM removes many of the constraints of conventional manufacturing,
it imposes some new constraints of its own. When designing for AM, designers
therefore need to change their approach and learn new design techniques suited to
AM. In the past, design for manufacturing guidelines and rules dictated that part
shapes should be kept as simple as possible. Detailed consideration would be given
to manufacturing process requirements such as parting lines, draft angles, and wall
thicknesses. Many designers have been educated and trained with this view, which
Teaching Design for Additive Manufacturing … 141

Fig. 1 DfAM guideline example of the minimum allowable hole size dependency on wall thickness

underpins everything they have learned. Designing for AM brings radical change
that requires a new way of thinking among designers. With proper understanding
and experience, designers can improve product functionality by using a number of
new techniques (Wohlers et al. 2017).
New design techniques that are particular to AM include, for example, topology
optimization and lattice structures as tools to produce lightweight parts. Part consol-
idation is a technique that allows many simple parts to be combined into one much
more complex part, which would be a challenge for conventional manufacturing but
isn’t for AM. Special techniques around mass-customization and conformal cool-
ing strategies can also be used to add value to products. Many design guidelines
governing elements such as wall thicknesses, hole sizes, pin sizes, etc. have been
developed but, in the world of AM, engineers and designers must learn to see these
only as general guidelines, rather than as strict design rules that can be applied in
any situation.
One of the other difficulties of AM is that most of the design-guidelines depend
on a number of parameters that affect part quality. Minimum allowable hole size
through a wall, for example, is dependent on the wall thickness the hole is going
through (Fig. 1).
Print orientation, for example, plays a role on the anisotropy of the part, the surface
quality of the part, and how much support material it requires. So changing the print
orientation of the part affects how much support material will be required. Support
material, however, is also related to the angle of any unsupported features of the
part, and it’s need is also related to the residual stress in the part. So if a part, for
example, has uneven thicknesses of material, it may contain greater residual stress,
so may require extra support material to compensate for that. The above are just a
few examples of some of the complexities involved in DfAM (Fig. 2).
142 O. Diegel et al.

Fig. 2 Overview of some of the DfAM guidelines

3 The Application of PBL for Industry DfAM Courses

at Lund University

Since 2015, Lund University has been offering a number of external industry based
courses to educate engineers and designers about additive manufacturing. For all
these courses Lund University has employed a PBL teaching approach in which
about half the course is focused around practical hands-on problems in which the
attendees can apply the theoretical learning from the other half of the course. The
courses are given over four full days, divided into two sets of two days, and contain
approximately the same amount of material that would be given in a full semester
undergraduate course. The reason these courses are so concentrated, fast paced, and
packed full of information is that it can be difficult for company employees to take
more than a few days off at once. The curriculum of material covered in these courses
includes (Table 1).
During the course, attendees are exposed to the majority of factors that affect the
print quality and economic viability of an AM part. The theoretical topics covered
are, more or less, ordered in a way to make the topics as relevant as possible to the
problem-based exercises that follow. As an example of the application of PBL, in
the first part of the curriculum, the course covers some of the theoretical aspects and
design rules of printing in metal. In particular, it discusses the fact that the support
material that is required by metal AM systems to anchor the part to the build plate, and
to help with heat-transfer to minimize distortion, and to resist the mechanical force
of the powder spreading mechanism can make metal printing a difficult challenge.
A point that is emphasized during the theory sessions is that this support material
can play a major role on part cost, as it can require substantial labor to remove.
Teaching Design for Additive Manufacturing … 143

Table 1 Sample curriculum for four-day design for AM course

Legend Theory session Hands-on session
Topic Details
Day 1
Intro to AM. The state Recent AM growth trends and developments around the world.
of the AM industry Benefits of AM in the context of DfAM, how AM is being applied,
and how certain parts can be designed for AM
AM process: from Examining the complete AM process chain, from CAD part creation,
CAD to part to part production. Attendees will gain an understanding of the entire
process chain and how it helps them to design better AM parts, file
formats, and working with STL manipulation software such as
Magics. The session also covers the main AM technologies, with
advantages/disadvantages/applications of each
Lattice structure An exercise in which a solid part is transformed into a shell filled
exercise with a lattice structure. Several different lattice strategies are
explored and tested
Part consolidation Implications of part consolidation for AM. Hands-on exercises in
exercise part consolidation
Day 2
AM process: from Continuation of Day 1 session: Description of other popular AM
CAD to part technologies
Designing for metal Specific issues and guidelines around designing for metal AM,
AM. including anisotropy, process constraints, general guidelines related
to wall thicknesses, hole sizes, tolerances, angles, etc.
The session also covers how AM metal powders are made, and what
their effect is on the metallurgical properties of parts.
Topology optimization Session on designing topology-optimized parts for additive
manufacturing, and creating lightweight parts using software such as
Inspire from SolidThinking. The general workflow of topology
optimization, setting up multiple load-cases and then using the
generated ideas to produce a combined design
AM Design The thought processes behind design for AM
optimisation exercise In this exercise we design a hydraulic manifold while keeping print
orientation and support material in mind
Day 3
Support material Visit of AM facility. Removal of metal support material from
removal and lab visit attendee parts printed over break
Designing for metal Continuation of day 2 session on designing for metal AM. Close look
AM part 2 at metal AM post-processing and material properties. Examination of
health and safety aspects of working with metal powders.
Implications around certification of metal AM parts
Panel session Group of experts discuss lessons learned with AM, problems,
challenges, opportunities, and design considerations
Design for Hands-on exercise to design a custom product using a combination of
mass-customization CAD, 3D scanning, and STL editing software. This exercise
exercise introduces attendees to the idea of working with multiple software
packages and technologies to produce parts that are optimized for AM
144 O. Diegel et al.

Table 1 (continued)
Legend Theory session Hands-on session
Topic Details
Day 4
Designing for other Specific issues and design guidelines surrounding polymer AM
AM processes (FDM, LS, SL, etc.), including post-processing, etc.
Tooling applications of Looking at AM beyond direct part production: Injection-molding
AM tools, sheet-metal forming tools, extrusion tools, jigs and fixtures, etc.
Adding mounting fixtures to parts to ease mounting on CNC
machines for more efficient post-processing
Economics of AM An examination of the factors that affect AM part cost and economic
models on how to deal with them
AM as an innovation Using AM, and other technologies, as a tool to change how we think
catalyst about products, and can use them to stimulate innovation
Putting it all together Hands-on exercise to design a product that can be printed in metal,
using the learning from the last 4 days, and with minimal support
material and post processing
AM in the near future Looking at where AM and design software tools are headed in the
near future and the implications they will have on DfAM

Fig. 3 Simplified block design manifold showing only the required in and out channels

Later that session, course attendees undertake a hands-on design exercise in which
they are asked to redesign a block manifold into one that is designed for AM. The
block manifold is, literally, what it sounds like: a block of steel with holes drilled
into it to allow hydraulic fluid to go from a source to several destinations. Block
manifolds are used in many industrial applications where fluid needs to be delivered
from one source to multiple recipients. Their weight, however, can be considerable
so any weight reduction that could potentially be achieved through the use of AM
represents great benefits to any products that benefit from being lighter (Fig. 3).
Teaching Design for Additive Manufacturing … 145


Fig. 4 Manifold design before and after shell operation on block design

Fig. 5 Support material required by shelled block design in two different print orientations

The attendees are first shown what simply removing all the unrequired material
from the block manifold, through a simple ‘shell’ operation, would result in. The
result is a ‘minimal’ set of pipes that are connected together as follows (Fig. 4).
The attendees are then shown, in software, what the results would be, from a
support material point of view, if the part was printed as is. This is important, as it is
often the attendees first exposure to automated support material generation software
(Fig. 5).
From this point, the attendees are split into teams of 3 or 4 members to redesign the
manifold into a new design that minimizes the amount of support material used. The
objective is to make the manifold as light as possible but, at the same time, to make
it manufacturable with as little post-processing labor as possible. To, purposefully,
146 O. Diegel et al.

Fig. 6 Example of a design that requires minimal support material

increase the level of difficulty of the task, the attendees are told that they cannot move
any of the positions of the outside connection points of the manifold.
The attendees select a member of their team to be the CAD operator, and they use
whatever CAD program they are most comfortable with. Another team member is
designated as the AM machine operator, who will set up that CAD models in the AM
software and generate its support material. The entire team now starts to generate
design ideas, using the knowledge gained during the previous theory sessions, and the
CAD operator implements those into a new design. The first thing they typically first
discuss is the best print orientation for the manifold, and run through the effects on
the manifold of different print orientations. Whenever they are not sure of the effect
of one of their decisions, they are encouraged to save their work in STL format (the
de facto file format for AM) and the designated machine operator then uses the AM
software to generate the support material for their current design. This teaches them
the importance of being able to quickly switch back and forth between the different
software applications that may be required for different aspects of AM (Fig. 6).
The design session takes about 2 h, at the end of which all the teams have generally
completed a design that uses relatively little support material. The number of design
strategies used by different groups is surprisingly varied, but they are also mostly
successful. This is useful in demonstrating to the students that there is no single
correct way of designing for AM. There are many different solutions, each of which
has different implications on the quality and function of the part. Once the attendees
have finished their designs, if the teacher sees faults in the designs that will require
the use of support material, these are purposefully not corrected, as these faults will
help to promote further learning. To further enhance the learning experience, and to
truly drive home the difficulty that support material can impart to metal AM, during
Teaching Design for Additive Manufacturing … 147

Fig. 7 Examples of a course attendee manifold designs

the break between the first two days of the course and the second two days of the
course, the attendees designs are printed in metal.
The first session after the break between the two parts of the course includes a visit
to a local AM lab, so the attendees can see AM machines in action, and also includes
a hands-on session where the attendees have to remove the support material from the
manifold parts they designed before the break. This truly is an eye-opener as, upon
attempting to remove support material themselves, the attendees immediately grasp
why it is so important to try and design to minimize support, because it can be so
hard to remove and therefore adds such a lot of labor costs to the part. This hands-on
experience is probably one of the highlights of the course in terms of really driving
home the learning in a significant way. Once a person has personally experienced
the challenges of metal AM support material removal, they truly understand one of
the many goals of DfAM (Fig. 7).

4 Conclusions

Additive manufacturing is an applied teaching area in that just teaching the theory of
AM holds relatively little meaning to those being taught. You can teach them what
can be done with AM, but to teach them the intricacies of the design rules, many
of which depend on a great number of factors, such as print orientation, material,
angles, etc. the best way is to get them to solve a real-world problem by designing
a part, and printing it themselves so they can truly understand the results of their
thought process, be it successful or unsuccessful. Because of this, teaching design
for additive manufacturing is well suited to problem-based learning
148 O. Diegel et al.

In the DfAM industry courses offered by Lund University, the response by atten-
dees to this problem-based teaching approach has been phenomenal, and because of
this, the courses have received excellent reviews. Staff at Lund University believe
this is because, when the attendees are given real-world problems to solve, they work
as teams to resolve them and, whether their solution to the problem is successful or
not, the learning they get from it, either way, is far greater than what they get from
just memorizing course material.
Though the problem based teaching approach described in this chapter was devel-
oped by staff at Lund University, in Sweden, the DfAM courses have been offered to
companies all over Europe, the United States, and Australasia, which demonstrates
that the approach is applicable to any university, or organization, in any country.
Several courses within the Lund University School of Engineering undergraduate
program have now being adapted to employ this same teaching approach with great


Aalborg. (2015). The Aalborg model for problem based learning. Retrieved December 2017, from
Barell, J. (2006). Problem-based learning: An inquiry approach. Corwin Press. ISBN: ISBN-9-
Duch, B. J., Groh, S. E., & Allen, D. E. (Eds.). (2001). The power of problem-based learning.
Sterling, VA: Stylus.
Peters, J. A. A., & Libby Miles, C. B. (2006). The practice of problem-based learning: A guide
to implementing PBL in the college classroom. Bolton, Mass: Anker Pub. Co. ISBN 978-
Wohlers, T., Campbell, I., Diegel, O., & Kowen, J. (2017). Wohlers report: Additive manufacturing
state of the industry, annual worldwide progress report. ISBN: 978-0-9913332-3-3.
Zemesukis Education. (2017). Problem based learning. Retrieved December 2017, from http://

Professor Olaf Diegel is both an educator and a practitioner of product development with an
excellent track record of developing innovative solutions to engineering problems. In his role as
professor of product development, in the department of design sciences of the faculty of engineer-
ing at Lund University, in Sweden, he is heavily involved in all aspects of product development
and is widely published in the areas of additive manufacturing and rapid product development.
In his consulting practice he develops a wide range of products for companies around the world.
Over the past 10 years he has developed over 100 commercialized new products including inno-
vative new theatre lighting products, security and marine products and several home health moni-
toring products and, for this work, has received numerous product development awards. Over the
last 20 years, Olaf has become a passionate follower of 3D printing (additive manufacturing). He
believes it is one of the technologies that has been a real godsend to innovation as it allows design-
ers and inventors to instantly test out ideas to see if they work. It also removes the traditional man-
ufacturing constraints that have become a barrier to creativity, and allows us to get real products
to market without the normally high costs that can become a barrier to innovation.
Teaching Design for Additive Manufacturing … 149

Axel Nordin holds an M.Sc. in Mechanical Engineering from Lund University, Sweden, and a
Ph.D. of Engineering from the division of Machine Design. He has participated in two govern-
ment funded research projects. His work is mainly concerned with studying aspects of integrating
complex morphologies into bespoke products, such as computational, manufacturing, structural,
and usability challenges.

Damien Motte holds the position of associate professor at the division of Machine Design, Lund
University, Sweden. He received a Ph.D. from the same division, a research master from the Indus-
trial Engineering Laboratory at École Centrale Paris, France, and an M.Sc. in Industrial Engineer-
ing at École des Mines d’Albi, France. He is currently working on alternative engineering design
and product development methodologies.

External Resources: Swedish Additive Manufacturing Association supports activities that will
ensure Swedish industries are competitive and leading through high-value manufacturing to create
growth, uniqueness, jobs, and export opportunities. http://www.sveat.se.
‘What is in a Word?’—The Use and
Background for Terms and Definitions
in Additive Manufacturing

Klas Boivie

1 Introduction

Additive manufacturing (AM) is a highly diverse field of technology, with a multitude

of commonly used terms and abbreviations that, for the novice could appear as being
inconsistent and confusing such that it many times has been compared to an ‘alphabet
soup’. In the present context of AM, regarded as an industrial manufacturing process,
this impression could certainly be justified; however, the development of terms and
abbreviations used in the field of AM has been following the development of the
technology, with respect to the different application areas and markets. Nevertheless,
all communication, including education relies on being able to share a common, clear
understanding of terms used for a specific topic. It is, therefore, important for the
educator to not only use terms and definitions correctly, and in the right context, but
also to have an understanding of the background and usage of terms and concepts
with historical relevance, that can be found in literature and occasionally still be in

2 The Origin and Background for Terms and Abbreviations

Used in Additive Manufacturing Technology

Albeit fabrication of objects by the successive addition of materials is not uncommon

in nature or in human history, what we today call additive manufacturing technology
is a relative recent development. The principle of forming objects by materials’
addition is demonstrated in nature for example, by the shells of snails and shellfish,

K. Boivie (B)
Department of Production Technology, SINTEF Raufoss Manufacturing AS, S.P. Andersens vei
5, 7465 Trondheim, Norway
e-mail: klas.boivie@sintef.no

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019 151

E. Pei et al. (eds.), Additive Manufacturing—Developments in Training
and Education, https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-76084-1_11
152 K. Boivie

that are produced layer by layer, by successive addition of minerals and protein,
and also by swallows’, and hornets’ nests, that are built by successive addition of
clay or pulp. Human ingenuity have applied the same principle in, for example,
early techniques to make pottery, where coils of clay are successively stacked and
joined onto each other. However, even if the principle of materials’ addition as such
was hardly unknown, the development of the modern AM industry and processes
were largely motivated by the needs of the American automotive industry. During
the 1980-s American carmakers were facing an increasingly stiff competition from
Japan. One of the most important advantages held by the Japanese was their ability for
rapid development of new models. At the same time, analysis indicated that a critical
bottleneck for the American automotive companies was the time and cost spent on
the production of prototypes during the development of new car models. This need
created a market for new technologies enabling cheaper and more efficient prototype
production. Meanwhile, the development of computer technology and software had
reached a level that enabled the generation of three-dimensional (3D) solid models
of the products during the design process. This made it possible to bypass several
steps in the prototyping process by automating the production of physical models
directly based on the 3D solid model. As a result, a number of Rapid Prototyping
(RP) processes were brought to the market during the late 1980-s and early 1990-s
(Wohlers Report 1996–2005; Gibson et al. 2010).
Even if these new processes in some aspects were principally different, there were
also common traits, which still are fundamental in additive manufacturing technol-
ogy. Typically, the process starts from a 3D solid model generated by a Computer
Aided Design (CAD) program. This model is converted into slices, and the physical
models are built through the reproduction of these slices by successive addition of
The most distinctive difference between the processes is, therefore, the different
solutions for the conversion of a generic feedstock material into a solid geometry.
These, often patented, solutions for material’s addition have also been the inspiration
for the different process names and acronyms used for the marketing of each process.
Since this technology originally targeted a specific need, and the different solutions
were aimed at a distinctive market, the different rapid prototyping process solutions
were, therefore, brought to the market as products under their own product names.
These names have, since then, been used as process names, and quite often also
commonly used as generic names for a type of process, even if they, in reality, have
been product names for a process solution from a specific company.
This development of processes and branding for the intended market segment
brought process names such as ‘Stereo Lithography’, where the machine was a
‘Stereo Lithography Apparatus’ (SLA1 ), ‘Selective Laser Sintering’ (SLS2 ), ‘Fused

1 Registeredtrademark: (for a machine) serial number: 75331091, registration number: 2327581.

2 Registeredtrademark: (for a service 1990–93) serial number 74063299, (for a service 2003–16)
serial number 78232400, registration number: 2980742, (for a rapid prototyping system 1990–2016)
serial number 74063, registration number: 1842387.
‘What is in a Word?’—The Use and Background for Terms … 153

Deposition Modelling’ (FDM3 ), Laser Engineered Net Shaping (LENS4 ) ‘Laminated

Object Manufacturing’ (LOM5 ), ‘Inkjet’ and ‘3D-Printing’6 (3DP7 ) to the market. As
long as these were unique solutions marketed for prototyping purposes by different
companies, this was not a problem. However, as new companies entered the market,
and brought similar process solutions to market under their own product names,
the conditions were set that would develop into the confusing situation for AM
terminology that has complicated the understanding of this sector of technology for
several years.

3 Process Names, Brand Names and Acronyms

As new processes were patented and introduced to the rapid prototyping market,
the names used for branding each process were often inspired by the title of the
patent and what the inventors considered distinguishing features of their specific
process. The process names were normally trademarked to protect the brand name
and market reputation. When other companies introduced similar processes, they
had to use different names for their ‘product’. The names for processes that were
first to make an impact on a specific customer segment have had a tendency to stick
and could for a period be used as a group name for a type of processes. However,
the different groups of processes have been identified differently over time, partially
with respect to process features and partially with respect to actual or anticipated
application areas.

3.1 ‘3D Printing’

The commonly used term ‘3D Printing’ (3DP) was first introduced to the field of addi-
tive manufacturing as the name for a specific process developed at Massachusetts’
Institute of Technology (MIT) and filed for a patent in 1989 under the name ‘Three-
dimensional printing techniques’ (Sachs et al. 1993). The name comes from that
this process is based on conventional printing technique where a printhead is used
to selectively deposit adhesive fluid (i.e. a binder or a glue) onto a thin layer of
powder that has been spread over a platform that repeatedly can be lowered as new

3 Registered trademark: (for a process) serial number: 85380733, registration number: 4325106,
(for a service 2006–07) serial number: 78849754.
4 Registered trademark: (for a machine) serial number: 85409708, registration number: 4134993,

(for a machine 2002–07) serial number: 76123411, registration number: 2575496, (for a service
2000–09) serial number: 76115922, registration number: 2575471.
5 Registered trademark: (for a process 1992–93) serial number 74283081, (for a machine and soft-

ware 1993–2006) serial number: 74428567, registration number: 1892939.

6 Registered trademark: (for a service 1992–93), serial number: 74285016.
7 Registered trademark: (for a machine 1992–94), serial number 74292965.
154 K. Boivie

powder layers are applied. The curing of the adhesive binds the powder particles
together, thus forming a layer of solid material attached to previously applied layers
of powder. This basic patented principle has been licensed to several companies,
who are using it for different particulate materials, such as gypsum, foundry sand,
metal and ceramic powders, and used for different application areas and industries.
Even if these companies sometimes use their own brand name for their variety of the
process, they could, clearly, all be considered as ‘3D Printing processes’.
However, other AM processes have also employed technical solutions used in
conventional printing processes. Instead of distributing a binder, the printhead could
dispense a liquid material that solidifies after deposition, either by solidification as
the liquid’s temperature is lowered, or by curing after exposure to ultraviolet light.
Such processes have been known under product names such as ‘Inkjet’, ‘Multi-Jet
Modelling’, ‘Thermojet’, ‘Polyjet’ and others, but since they originally were based
on conventional printing techniques, also identified as belonging to the group of ‘3D
Printing’ processes, together with MIT’s process.
Furthermore, since several of the processes that were based on conventional print-
ing technology at a time were comparably low cost and easy to use, they were thought
to be likely candidates for a future application where they would be commonly used
by smaller companies and in people’s homes, similar to a conventional 2D-printer.
Thus, they were grouped together with other low-cost AM machines, which not nec-
essarily were based on conventional printing technology, and collectively also called
‘3D Printers’, to distinguish them from the more advanced ‘Industrial RP machines’
(Wohlers Report 2005).
Then, in 2012, when Chris Anderson, published his book, ‘Makers: The New
Industrial Revolution’, he mentioned ‘3D Printers’ as one of several types of low-
cost, user friendly, machine tools, that he envisioned, in combination with accessible
low-cost CAD software, would be the beginning of a new industrial revolution.
When Anderson mentioned ‘3D Printers’ in this context, he was clearly referring to
the group of low-cost, easy to use AM machines. However, since this book was the
first time mentioning of AM technology reached a wide impact in popular media,
‘3D Printing’ has a bit misleading, become the term for AM technology that is most
widely recognized by the general public. Since all of the four different meanings
of the term ‘3D Printing’ are currently used in parallel, through publications and
documentation, from different times and by different groups, throughout the AM
industry, the term is by itself, perhaps the most ambiguous term used in the AM
industry. Even if the term ‘3D Printing’ sometimes is used by highly experienced
professionals, who recognize the power of its public recognition, the question of
how to understand the term and the message that goes with it will still be a question
of who is using it, and in which context the term is used. There will clearly be
many more results from a web search on ‘3D Printing’ than from a web search on
‘additive manufacturing’, but the search on ‘3D Printing’ will include results for all
different meanings of this term, and therefore also much that has been generated
based on the popular hype around ‘3D Printing’ during recent years. This includes a
large part that is based mainly on speculations, loosely formed opinions, and much
‘What is in a Word?’—The Use and Background for Terms … 155

inflated expectations. It is, therefore, advisable to use the term ‘3D Printing’ with
great caution in regards to all communication, including education.

3.2 ‘Laser Sintering’

Originally, ‘Laser Sintering’ was the term used to describe a process for joining
polymer powder by the heat of a laser, as it was used in one of the early additive
manufacturing processes, which had been developed at the University of Texas at
Austin. Most commonly, the term ‘sintering’ is used to describe as a process to bond
and densify metallic and ceramic particulate materials by heating close to, but below
the melting point. However, since the feedstock material used in this case was a
polymer powder which was not fully melted, ‘sintering’ was the term that closest
described how the powder was bonded together to form the parts, and thus the pro-
cess was patented (Deckard 1989; Beaman and Deckard 1990), trademarked, and
commercialized as ‘Selective Laser Sintering’ (SLS) by DTM Corp. (which later
has been purchased by 3D Systems Inc.). When other varieties of this process princi-
ple were brought to market, the trademark was avoided by describing the process of
consolidation as ‘laser sintering’. However, even if this interpretation of ‘sintering’
is reasonable and many times accepted in regard to polymer powders, in particular
for amorphous polymers, it is not quite generally applicable for all powders and
particulate materials. Still, when this type of process equipment began to be used for
different types of powders, including metal and ceramic powders, it was generally
also called ‘laser sintering’, regardless of the actual process of bonding and consol-
idation of the powder actually did fulfil the normal description of sintering for that
particular material.
The first metal powder application of this process principle that was launched on
the market by EOS GmbH, was based on a mixed composition of bronze powders
with different melting temperatures. The smaller fraction of the powder composition
which had lower melting temperature melted during processing while the remain-
ing powder particles stayed intact. The contact between the solid and melted phases
enabled the diffusion of material to the boundaries between the solid particles, thus
causing densification and thereby fulfilling the conditions for liquid-phase sintering.
Since the parts both acquired the geometry and was consolidated to final density
directly in the machine, this was a considered as a ‘direct process’ from the Rapid
Prototyping perspective, and this made this process being trademarked as ‘Direct
Metal Laser Sintering’, DMLS.8 However, when later models of similar machines
with more powerful lasers were launched from the same company, the process was
still referred to under the trademarked name, DMLS, even if the metal powder in
these cases could be fully melted, and the actual process, thus had no resemblance to
conventional sintering of metallic materials. Today (2018), the low melting/high
melting—temperature powders have been withdrawn from the market, and the

8 Registered trademark: (for services) serial number 85592510, registration number 4515227.
156 K. Boivie

alternative term ‘Direct Metal Laser Melting’ DMLM, has been introduced, all pow-
ders marketed for processing by this equipment are fully melted during processing,
the process is still sometimes referred to as DMLS, sometimes DMLM and some-
times as DMLS/DMLM.
Another very similar process was developed directly for processing metal pow-
ders. The material was fully melted selectively, and the process was following indus-
try conventions patented (Meiners et al. 1998; Fockele and Schwartze 2009) and
trademarked as ‘Selective Laser Melting’ SLM.9 This name is very easy to under-
stand and explain and is, therefore, often also used for other closely related metal
powder-based processes. However, since the name is trademarked by SLM Solutions
Group AG, and is used in the names of products from that company, the actual mean-
ing of the term ‘SLM’ is under control by SLM Solutions. So far SLM Solutions have
exclusively worked with lasers melting powders, but in principle, there is nothing that
could stop them from changing energy source, or use a different type of feedstock or
a different feedstock distribution system, and they still could use their brand name
and call that process and machines ‘SLM’. Just like EOS have kept on using their
trademarked process name DMLS after the powders that actually did sinter had been
taken off the market.
For example and comparison, the automotive company name ‘Volvo’ started as a
brand name used by the Swedish ball bearing manufacturing company SKF. The name
is derived from Latin: ‘volvore’—to roll, thus ‘volvo’—I roll. Originally, it was used
for a line of bearings aimed at the market for automotive, bicycle and similar typically
rolling products. When SKF decided the launch of a new automotive company, they
simply took their already registered brand and used it for the new company (Pederson
2005). It was easy to read and easy to pronounce in all languages of the major
markets. However, since ‘Volvo’ means ‘I roll’, does this mean that everything that
rolls it a ‘Volvo’? Since the company over time has had several different divisions,
and been active on several different markets, including construction equipment, boat
engines and aerospace, it would clearly be a mistake to conclude that all things called
‘Volvo’ would be rolling objects. In this case, as well as the entire field of additive
manufacturing, it is very well advised to be aware of which is a generic product name
and which is a trademarked product name, and use the terms accordingly.
Other companies that have shared the original development background with
SLM Solutions, or have licensed the technology, also use the process name ‘SLM’.
However, when Concept Laser, a new company entered the market, and launched
their version of this process, it was marketed by a different name: ‘Laser Cusing’
which so far is unique to Concept Laser.

9 Registered trademark: (for workpieces, shapes, machines, control devices, design, etc.) serial num-

ber. 85507057, registration number: 4416715, (for services) serial number 86407585, registration
number: 5335733.
‘What is in a Word?’—The Use and Background for Terms … 157

3.3 ‘Fused Deposition Modelling’

‘Fused Deposition Modelling’, FDM, was one of the first AM processes to be patented
and make an impact on the market. Originally developed, patented, trademarked and
marketed by Stratasys Ltd. The basic principle for the process is not very complicated;
extrusion of thin strings of low-temperature melting plastics, fed from a filament roll.
It is fairly user-friendly and does not require processing equipment like lasers, or
atmosphere controlled process chambers. It is, therefore, hardly surprising that this
principle was among the first to be copied by several initiatives to develop low-cost
AM machines after the patent had expired. Perhaps the most influential among these
was the RepRap project, which was an open design, low-cost solution developed with
the intention to enable continuous evolution of the design over a global community of
users (www.reprap.org). Several commercial varieties of RepRap designs have also
been brought to the market and sold for use in private homes, smaller companies, and
not least important, at different levels of education. Since FDM is a name trademarked
by Stratasys, this process is instead often referred to as ‘Fused Filament Fabrication’
FFF, when other manufacturers apply it in their machines. However, the acronym
‘FFF’ has also for a long time been referring to ‘Free Form Fabrication’, and then
used as a general term for the entire field of additive manufacturing. Moreover, in
addition to this, the company Arcam AB, for a period kept the registered trademark
‘FFF10 ’ which was used in their international marketing for their, entirely different,
AM process. Within the AM community, ‘FDM’ has only been used for this process,
but if correctly used only refer to processing in machines by Stratasys. ‘FFF’ could
have several meanings, and what actually is meant by this acronym depends on the
context and person who is using it. Moreover, since this is the process that has been
most exposed during the recent ‘3D Printing’ hype, and machines based on this
process are marketed both to private users and schools as ‘3D Printers’, this is the
process that most people associate with the term ‘3D Printing’, even if it has no
connection to any traditional printing technology.

3.4 ‘SLA’, ‘LOM’ and Others

There are several more AM processes and services known by different names and
acronyms available on the market. However, many of these have primarily been
marketed, and thus known under the product name for the actual machine rather
than a trademarked name for a process. For example, the acronym ‘SLA’ refers to
‘Stereo Lithography Apparatus’, and thus refer to the machine, which is less of a
problem as long as any competitors use their own product names for their machines.
Moreover, processes that are mainly directed on the prototyping and service providing
industry can still be regarded as working with their customers on an ad hoc and by
agreement—basis, and in these cases, the meaning of the terms used could typically

10 Registered trademark: serial number 76111397, registration number 2614068.

158 K. Boivie

be whatever the vendors and customers agree upon. In regard to education, if a process
is used for prototyping and service providing purposes it would be natural just to
refer the specific processes name, but in a more general perspective, international
standards terminology could be helpful and is therefore recommended.

3.5 Describing the Process: As Rapid Prototyping or

Industrial Manufacturing?

Besides process, and brand names, the model for describing the actual processes has
also been highly influenced by the technology’s original application for prototyping
purposes. In the market for prototyping services, the actual ‘product’ delivered is
the creation of a physical prototype based on a design provided by the customer.
Thus, the prototyping process is the combination of operations that reproduces the
shape as designed and the subsequent post-processing operations that make the shape
fulfil the requirements for the purpose of the prototype. Since prototyping was the
main application area for additive manufacturing processes, the convention was also
to describe the Rapid Prototyping process as consisting of a building operation to
render the geometry, and subsequent post-processing operations to finish the proto-
type to customer requirements. Typically, ‘post-processing operations’ for the Rapid
Prototyping process would then by any operations that were performed on the part
outside the Rapid Prototyping machine.
An industrial manufacturing process is in reality quite different: while a prototype
does not necessarily need to fulfil all functional requirements for the final product,
the industrial manufacturing process must be able to reproduce both the product
geometry and the material properties in a way such that the quality is both predictable
and consistent. It is rare that all the geometric and material requirements for an
industrial product can be realized through a single operation or process step, and
therefore industrial manufacturing processes are made up of a series of operations and
sub-processes, with defined interfaces and specified requirements for each process
step. It is also common that one company, or department within a company, have
specialized in performing one or a few of these operations before delivering the part
to the next agent in the process chain. This makes each agent taking the role of
both being a customer that receives the part from the previous agent and a supplier
that delivers the part to the following agent. In this situation, it does hardly make
sense to regard any operation or sub-process as being the main process and the rest
as pre-, or post-processing. In an industrial manufacturing situation, it would be
most natural that the AM process would fill a corresponding function as any other
manufacturing operation, such as casting injection moulding, forging and milling: to
deliver a part produced to a given specification for further processing by subsequent
process steps. Even if additive manufacturing can drastically reduce the number
of operations needed to create the desired product geometry, any other operations
necessary to make the part fulfil the product requirements must still be regarded
‘What is in a Word?’—The Use and Background for Terms … 159

as additional steps in the manufacturing process chain, rather than post-processing

This does, however, raise the question of which operations and process steps are a
part of the AM process and which are to be considered as subsequent process steps.
In a Rapid Prototyping process, typical post-processing operations could be post-
curing of photo-curable polymer parts, heat treatment of metal parts, sintering and
infiltration of parts made from joining powders, and any other operations needed to
give the part the required properties, dimensions and appearance. For an industrial
manufacturing situation, it is necessary to determine which operations are an indis-
pensable part of the AM process and which operations either are preparations for the
AM process, or perform further operation steps on the outcome of the AM process.
By definition, additive manufacturing processes joins material to make parts based
on 3D model data. Therefore, the AM process must include the joining of material
until the geometry as specified by the 3D model is represented, and since the ‘part’
constitutes a functional unit of an intended product, this also means that the material
should have the fundamental properties as determined by the intended application.
This means that the material for an intended metal of ceramic part must be joined so
that metallic or ceramic bonding has been established throughout the part.
Many AM processes achieve this in a single process step, thus called single-
step processes. But there are others, for example, application of metallic powder in
a binder jetting process, that combines one process step to form the geometry, in
this example the binder jetting process, with one or more subsequent process steps
to consolidate the material to metallic properties, thus called multi-step processes.
This type of procedure is typically shared with conventional powder metallurgy and
ceramic manufacturing processes which has a separate process step to shape the
material into a geometry, called a ‘green body’, followed by material consolidation
by sintering, with, or without infiltration.

3.6 International Standards Development

Since it had become increasingly clear that technology based on successive addi-
tion of materials had the potential to bring important benefits to the manufacturing
process as well as improving the performance of parts, it was also clear that the
development of an international market for products and technology required the
development of international standards. The first initiative to begin the development
of international standards was the formation of ASTM International Committee F42,
inauguration in early 2009. This was also the occasion when ‘Additive Manufactur-
ing’ (AM) was first defined as the common general term for the ‘process of joining
materials to make objects from 3D model data, usually layer upon layer, as opposed
to subtractive manufacturing methodologies’. The argument behind this original def-
inition was that the common and key determining feature of the processes targeted
by the standardization initiative, was the successive addition of material. This defini-
tion was also intended to distinguish the technology from, for example, numerically
160 K. Boivie

controlled machining operations, which would also be based on digital data, but
created geometries by successive removal of material, hence called subtractive man-
ufacturing methodologies. This definition has undergone some minor modifications
over time but the content and argument remains the same. The current definition by
ISO/TC261 and ASTM F42 reads: ‘additive manufacturing, (noun), AM: process of
joining materials to make parts from 3D model data, usually layer upon layer, as
opposed to subtractive manufacturing and formative manufacturing methodologies’
(ISO/ASTM 52900:2015). In this context, ‘formative manufacturing methodologies’
refer to processes that shape the geometry by the application of pressure to a raw
material, for example, forging, casting, injection moulding, sheet metal forming and
The development of international standards for AM created an urgent need for
a consistent use of terms and definitions that would be valid for all AM standards,
and thus throughout the entire AM industry. This need was defined as a key task
for both ASTM F42 and ISO/TC261 (inaugurated 2011), and therefore has been a
prioritized topic for workgroups in both organizations. Since ISO and ASTM agreed
to work together and jointly develop AM standards, the responsibility for continu-
ously developing and integrating new terms and definitions in a joint international
standard for AM terminology is now handled by a joint working group with experts
appointed from both organizations. Since all standards’ development is based on
building a common consensus among the involved stakeholders, the development of
an international standard terminology for AM presents an opportunity to disconnect
trademarked product names from use as general-purpose terms, and replace them
by terms and definitions that are under control by a committed community of stake-
holders, rather than the marketing divisions of individual corporations. The present
edition of this joint AM terminology standard (ISO/ASTM 52900:2015) has been
based on input from the members of both ISO/TC261 and ASTM F42 and been
accepted by ballot of more than 120 expert stakeholders in ASTM F42 and more
than 20 different national mirror committees through ISO/TC261. In addition to this,
it has also been balloted and passed as a European standard through CEN/TC438,
and is now one of the very few EN ISO/ASTM approved standards in the world.
With the great diversity of AM process technology and different application areas,
the task of developing a consistent international standard terminology for the entire
field of additive manufacturing clearly has many challenges. By necessity, this work
will include deconstruction of established concepts and terminology, inherited from
AM’s past as primarily a prototyping process. Since these terms and concepts still
are habitually being used in parts of the international AM community, replacing
them is clearly hardly possible to achieve without raising controversy. Moreover,
since different AM processes share traits with different conventional manufacturing
technologies, there are also stakeholders with background from these technology
areas that now are getting involved with AM and expects the concepts and terminol-
ogy used in AM to follow the conventions and terminology of the different related
technologies. However, since the field of AM is highly diverse, and share common
traits with several different technologies, it would not be possible to adhere differ-
ent parts of AM terminology to the traditions of all different related conventional
‘What is in a Word?’—The Use and Background for Terms … 161

manufacturing technologies without losing the consistency of terminology for AM.

So far, the policy of the ISO/ASTM Terminology Joint Work Group has been to as far
as possible use established terms and definitions from the traditional use within the
AM industry as well as using terms and definitions published in available standards
from ISO and ASTM International as a source of reference when applicable. How-
ever, serving the needs of the AM industry, terms and definitions have been adapted
and modified when needed in order to maintain a consistent terminology through-
out the field of AM technology. Even if people tend to prefer the terminology they
learned first and are used to, and certainly are free to do so in their daily speech, the
development of an international standard terminology is at present the only available
possibility to create and maintain a consistent and generally accepted terminology
for the entire AM field of research and industry.

3.7 Process Categories and Structure of Concepts

One of the first tasks to be addressed through the development of an international

terminology standard was to identify a basic structure for different processes that
could addressed by the same or very similar standards. Historically, AM processes
were identified as sharing the ‘type’ with a process that had entered the market at an
early stage. However, standards development organizations’ regulations are highly
restrictive with the usage of trademarked names as generic terms in terminology
standards. Moreover, in order to accommodate the needs for standards’ development,
the characteristics’ of the process categories to be addressed by similar standards
need to be clearly defined. Since, in addition to this, some of the names of the early
processes had become obsolete with regards to the actual function of the process,
there was a need to identify, define and name generic process categories for the
different AM processes. The task was limited to include only the AM processes
that could be candidates for development of international standards, meaning that
they should be available on the market through several actors, either as machine
vendors or as service providers, or both. This means that processes that are still in
development or are only available as a service from one specific company have not yet
been considered for the process category structure, at least not until they are firmly
established on the market. There are presently seven different process categories
identified, but this structure is open for revision and new process categories can be
included as they are developed and become relevant for manufacturing purposes on
the international market. Since trademarked process names should be avoided, the
process categories have been named after characteristics in the process design that
distinguish them from other comparable processes. These are as follows:
• Binder Jetting: processes in which a liquid bonding agent is selectively deposited
to join powder, (or very small particles), the powders or particles would typically
be distributed in a powder bed (see Fig. 1)
162 K. Boivie

Fig. 1 Binder jetting

• Directed Energy Deposition: processes in which a focused thermal energy is used to

fuse materials by melting as they are deposited, where the energy source, typically
a laser, electron beam or plasma arc, is focussed to provide a melt pool on the
substrate where the feedstock material is deposited (see Fig. 2)
• Material Extrusion: processes in which material is selectively dispensed through
a nozzle or orifice (see Fig. 3)
• Material jetting: processes in which droplets of build material are selectively
deposited, where the build material typically could be a low-temperature melt-
ing polymer such as wax or a photo-curable polymer resin (see Fig. 4)
• Powder Bed Fusion: processes in which thermal energy selectively fuses regions
of material in a powder bed (see Fig. 5a and b)
• Sheet Lamination: processes in which sheet material are bonded together to form
a part (see Fig. 6)
• Vat Photopolymerization: processes in which liquid photo-curable polymer resin
in a vat is selectively cured by light-activated polymerization (see Fig. 7a and b)
More detailed information about the seven presently defined AM process cate-
gories is available in ISO 17296-2:2015, Additive manufacturing—General prin-
ciples—Part 2: Overview of process categories and feedstock. Since the objective
for this structure of process categories was to identify basic groups of processes that
could be addressed by common standards, it is clear by intention very basic in nature,
and there are many more features and characteristics that could be used to distin-
guish between processes in further detail. This has been a topic for discussion within
the AM standards development community, and a system for further specification
of processes based on more detailed process features and materials processed, will
be proposed in upcoming revisions of the ISO/ASTM 52900-standard (publication
expected during 2018).
‘What is in a Word?’—The Use and Background for Terms … 163

Fig. 2 Directed Energy Deposition, with example of alternatives for feedstock distribution

4 Summary

The use of different terms and acronyms in the field of AM that has been conven-
tional for many years have largely been based on the needs for the technology’s
early application for rapid prototyping purposes. Many terms that have been used
as generic process names are in reality trademarked brand names under the control
of specific companies. Other commonly used terms can have different meanings
dependent on who is using them and the context they are used in. This has made the
usage of terms, abbreviations and concepts within additive manufacturing become
highly ambiguous and inconsistent. In order to address this issue, a joint collab-
oration effort by ISO/TC261 and ASTM F42 develops and maintains a common
international terminology standard for the entire area of additive manufacturing tech-
nology. The first issue, ISO/ASTM 52900:2015, Additive manufacturing—General
principles—Terminology, was published in 2015 and is available for purchase from
both organizations. However, since ISO makes all informative parts of their stan-
dards, typically including the terminology section, public accessible, free of charge
from their online browsing platform, this source of reference is largely available for
anyone to use. This international standard will be continuously updated as the new
164 K. Boivie

Fig. 3 Material extrusion

revisions are completed. Next revision is expected to be ready for publication during
Even if people, in general, tend to prefer to use terms and abbreviations in the
context and meaning as they were first learned, and certainly are free to do so in their
daily speech, the ISO/ASTM 52900 standards terminology, is the only source of fully
defined terms that is consistent for the wide perspective of additive manufacturing
technology. It is the prime source of reference for any situation where a clear and
unambiguous communication about additive manufacturing is needed. It is therefore
important that all people who would be professionally involved with AM should be
familiar with the existence and content of this standard and highly recommended
that it should be included, or referenced in the education in additive manufacturing.
‘What is in a Word?’—The Use and Background for Terms … 165

Fig. 4 Material jetting

166 K. Boivie

Fig. 5 a Powder Bed Fusion, typically using a laser and polymer powders. b Powder Bed Fusion,
typically using an electron beam and metal powder
‘What is in a Word?’—The Use and Background for Terms … 167

Fig. 6 Sheet Lamination

168 K. Boivie

Fig. 7 a Vat photopolymerization using a scanning laser. b Vat photopolymerization using a pho-
tomasking technique
‘What is in a Word?’—The Use and Background for Terms … 169


Anderson, C. (2012). Makers: The new industrial revolution. Crown Business, ©Chris Anderson
2012. ISBN-13: 978-0307720962, ISBN-10: 0307720969.
Beaman, J. J., & Deckard C. R. (1990). Selective laser sintering with assisted powder handling.
Patent US 4938816 A.
Deckard, C. R. (1989). Method and apparatus for producing parts by selective sintering. Patent US
4863538 A.
Gibson, I., Rosen, D. W., & Stucker, B. (2010). Additive manufacturing technologies, rapid proto-
typing to digital manufacturing, ©Springer 2010. ISBN: 978-1-4419-1119-3.
Fockele, M., & Schwartze, D. (2009). Method and apparatus for producing a shaped article. Patent
DE 10208150 B4.
ISO/ASTM 52900:2015. Additive manufacturing—General principles—Terminology. Retrieved
January 15, 2018, from https://www.iso.org/obp/ui/#iso:std:iso-astm:52900:ed-1:v1:en.
Meiners, W., et al. (1998). Selective laser sintering at melting temperature. Patent WO 1998024574
Pederson, J. P. (2005). AB Volvo international directory of company histories. 67. St. James Press.
pp. 378–383. ISBN 978-1-5586-2512-9.
Sachs, E. M., et al. (1993). Three-dimensional printing techniques. Patent US5204055 A.
Wohlers Associates: State of the Industry: World Progress Report, 1996–2005, http://www.
Wohlers Associates: State of the Industry: World Progress Report, 2005, pp. 28–29. ISBN 0-
9754429-1-0, http://www.wohlersassociates.com/state-of-the-industry-reports.html.

Klas Boivie works as a Senior Researcher in additive manufacturing (AM) technology at SINTEF
Raufoss Manufacturing AS in Trondheim Norway. He started working with AM for metallic mate-
rials in 1997 and defended his Ph.D. thesis on the topic in 2004. After completion of a Post-Doc
contract at NTNU in Trondheim, 2007 and until the present, Klas has been employed by SIN-
TEF, and SINTEF Raufoss Manufacturing AS, acting as the principal researcher in AM technolo-
gies. Over the years, he has been active in multiple research projects covering various aspects of
this technology, from new process development to practical solutions for industrial applications.
With respect to the ongoing development towards industrialization of AM technology, Klas has
taken an active part in the development of international standards for AM, through ASTM F42 as
well as ISO/TC261 and CEN/TC438 technical committees. He currently serves as the convener for
ISO/TC261 Work Group 1 for Terminology, as well as convener for the ISO/ASTM Joint Working
Group 51, which is responsible for development and maintenance of the international terminology
standard for Additive Manufacturing: EN ISO/ASTM 52900.

External Resources: National standards for AM in Sweden. https://www.sis.se/standardutveckling/

ISO/TC261 is the International Standardization body in the field of Additive Manufacturing
(AM) concerning their processes, terms and definitions, process chains (Hard- and Software), test
procedures, quality parameters, supply agreements and all kind of fundamentals. https://www.iso.
ASTM Technical committee F42 on Additive manufacturing was formed in 2009. F42 mem-
bers meet twice a year, usually in January and July, with about 100 members attending two days of
technical meetings. The Committee, with a current membership of approximately 400, has 6 tech-
nical subcommittees; all standards developed by F42 are published in the Annual Book of ASTM
Standards, Volume 10.04. https://www.astm.org/COMMITTEE/F42.html.
Informative parts of ISO/ASTM 52900:2015 AM terminology standard made publicly avail-
able by ISO. https://www.iso.org/obp/ui/#iso:std:iso-astm:52900:ed-1:v1:en.
Functional, Technical and Economical
Requirements Integration for Additive
Manufacturing Design Education

Alain Bernard, Mary Kathryn Thompson, Giovanni Moroni, Tom Vaneker,

Eujin Pei and Claude Barlier

1 Introduction

During the past decade, the use of Additive Manufacturing (AM) technology has
undergone a transformation. Early AM applications were focused on producing static
models and prototypes. Today, it is also used for the production of end use parts and
products. Leveraging the geometric and material freedoms of AM for end use parts
creates greater opportunities for designers, manufacturers and end users. However,
not all parts are possible or cost-effective to produce using AM. This necessitates a
better understanding of when, why and how to (re)design for the opportunities and
constraints associated with these technologies. Design for Additive Manufacturing
(DfAM) aims to develop the practice of designing and optimizing a product together
with its production process. It aims to reduce development time and cost and increase
performance, quality and profitability. This can include a collection of concrete tools,

A. Bernard (B)
Laboratory for Digital Sciences in Nantes (LS2N UMR CNRS 6004),
Ecole centrale de Nantes, Engineering of Industrial Products and Systems,
IS3P Team for Systems Engineering: Products, Processes & Performances, Nantes, France
e-mail: alain.bernard@ec-nantes.fr
M. K. Thompson
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Technical University of Denmark Kgs,
Lyngby 2800, Denmark
G. Moroni
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Politecnico di Milano, Milan, Italy
T. Vaneker
Faculty of Engineering Technology, University of Twente, Enschede, Netherlands
E. Pei
Institute of Materials and Manufacturing, Brunel University London, London, UK
C. Barlier
CIRTES, R&D Centre for Additive Manufacturing, Pôle VirtuReaL, Saint-Dié-des-Vosges, France

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019 171

E. Pei et al. (eds.), Additive Manufacturing—Developments in Training
and Education, https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-76084-1_12
172 A. Bernard et al.

techniques and guidelines to adapt a design to a given set of downstream constraints,

and guidelines to help understand and quantify the effect of the design process on
manufacturing (and vice versa). This may also help in understanding the relationship
between design and manufacturing and its impact on the designer, the design process
and design practice. DfAM can also account for these new opportunities, rules and
constraints within the scope of AM (Thompson et al. 2016b).
With the use of AM, the final characteristics of the produced part, especially
the material properties, as well as its functional capabilities and geometrical limits,
are known only at the end of the production phase. Therefore, it is important to
consider the AM production methods and to determine if the printed parts have to be
post-treated. AM can be integrated or combined with other processes to form longer
multistage process chains (Thompson et al. 2016a). Kim et al. (2015) proposed
a systems approach for data flow structuring and decomposition in several steps,
clarifying the need for data generation and transformation along the AM digital chain.
AM technologies produce physical objects from digital information. This requires
a digital dataflow to generate the instructions for the AM machines, followed by a
physical workflow to transform the raw material into the final part. As described by
Bernard et al. (2003), the process usually begins with a product idea, a set of 2D
images or a physical 3D object which is then developed as a digital model using solid
modelling, metrology or image reconstruction software. Next, the data is prepared
and adapted to define the manufacturing constraints and limits of the part in the
AM machine. Finally, the model is sliced or discretized to create instructions for the
machine. New software formats have been developed and standardized to support
AM data preparation and digital workflow. For example, the AMF format, which has
native support for colour, materials, lattices and constellations, has been standardized
and is intended to replace the purely geometrical and surface STL format. Education
must also be adapted to integrate new design practices based on AM criteria, and to
include more robust knowledge about material science and quality control for Design
for Additive Manufacturing (DfAM).

2 Design for Additive Manufacturing

Design for Additive Manufacturing (DfAM) is more than theory—it includes con-
cepts, practices and rules that are specific to each family of AM technology. The
term ‘Design for Additive Manufacturing’ has been used extensively in literature
(Doubrovski et al. 2012; Seepersad 2014; Vayre et al. 2012). DfAM is valid for
all processes and process chains that involve AM. However, in practice, the design
knowledge, tools, rules, processes and methodologies are different. AM processes
enable the manufacture of different types of features and impose different types
of constraints than other manufacturing processes. Therefore, AM requires differ-
ent process-specific design rules and tools than conventional fabrication techniques
(Gibson et al. 2010; Huang et al. 2015). AM provides opportunities, benefits and
freedoms at three levels, namely, the product level with multi-scale complexity, the
Functional, Technical and Economical Requirements Integration … 173

Fig. 1 Original seat

‘OT’Arts’ made of wood by
Stratoconception (source
Cirtes—Fabrication Additive
Dunod 2015)

part level with macro-scale complexity and the material level with micro-scale com-
plexity. Production and cost issues also need to be taken into account when designing
the product. The use of AM can provide design freedoms and opportunities at the
product level, including part consolidation, embedded parts and the direct production
of assemblies. For example, AM allows designers to consolidate the parts of an exist-
ing assembly into a single printable object. This eliminates the joining time and cost
and can also reduce inventory costs. It can also increase functionality and improve
performance. Most often, this also reduces the overall mass, increases the durability
and improves efficiency. AM allows objects such as small metal parts (bolts, nuts and
bushings), tubes for cooling channels and shape memory alloys for actuated hinges to
be embedded in printed parts. In addition, electrical components, conductive tracks,
motors, batteries and sensors can be embedded or created in situ to print complete
products and mechatronic devices. AM can also directly produce assemblies with
moving or movable parts, such as crank and slider mechanisms, gears or joints. It
can also produce discontinuous interlinked structures such as textiles. Incorporating
the material and geometric freedoms of AM into macro-scale parts can provide a
variety of aesthetic, functional, economic, emotional and ergonomic benefits. AM
technologies utilize a large range of materials including polymers, metals and ceram-
ics. Sheet lamination processes are compatible with paper, wood, cork, foam, metal
and rubber (Barlier and Bernard 2015) (Figs. 1 and 2).
Investment casting moulds and cores have been printed in sand and large structures
have been printed in clay and concrete (Fig. 3).
Material characteristics have to be closely linked to design rules and manufactur-
ing capabilities. Simulation-based approaches will need to be considered to provide
174 A. Bernard et al.

Fig. 2 Steel tooling for

gravity casting with
advanced conforming
cooling made by
Stratoconception (source
Cirtes—Fabrication Additive
Dunod 2015)

Fig. 3 Mould for casting

made by sand sintering
(source CTIF—Fabrication
Additive Dunod 2015)

information with decision-making when choosing the AM build parameters and con-
figuration (Fig. 4).
The use of AM enables the creation of complex internal features to increase
functionality and improve performance. For example, AM has been used to cre-
ate integrated air ducts and wiring conduits for industrial robots; 3D flexures for
integrated actuators and universal grippers; complex internal pathways for acoustic
damping devices; optimized fluid channels and internal micro vanes for ocular sur-
gical devices. However, one of the most widely studied applications is conformal
cooling. Conformal cooling channels follow the external geometry to provide more
effective and consistent heat transfer (Fig. 5).
Pelaingre et al. (2002) have proposed a new concept of thermal regulation based on
conformable thermal regulation surfaces instead of conformable cooling channels.
In particular, these conformable cooling surfaces have been implemented in plastic
injection tools and in aluminium diecasting tools (Pelaingre et al. 2004). Recent
studies have focused on new applications of conformal cooling such as hot sheet
metal forming (Mueller et al. 2013), strategies for increased performance such as
Functional, Technical and Economical Requirements Integration … 175

Fig. 4 Complete development phase of a part produced from the mould made by sand sintering
(source CTIF—Fabrication Additive Dunod 2015)

Fig. 5 Insert of mould with

thermal regulation (source
PEP—Fabrication Additive
Dunod 2015)

profiled conformal cooling channels (Altaf et al. 2013) and indirect and hybrid AM
for more efficient and cost-effective production such as using AM to produce wax
patterns for indirect tooling (Bernard et al. 2003). AM technologies can be used
to produce macrostructure topology optimized objects. Topology optimization is a
numerical approach that identifies where certain materials should be placed within the
three-dimensional part to achieve a desired functionality (e.g. stiffness) for a given
176 A. Bernard et al.

Fig. 6 On the left: initial part; on the right: optimized part (source Volume—Fabrication Additive
Dunod 2015)

set of loads and constraints while optimizing qualities such as minimal material
usage/weight or uniform stress distribution. Macrostructure topology optimization
assumes that the structure is composed of a single homogeneous material and that
material is either present or absent in each part of the design domain. Although
the optimization is often only in the structural domain, examples of multi-physics
topology optimization (e.g. with thermal and structural degrees of freedom) can be
found in the literature (Gao and Zhang 2010). Macrostructure topology optimization
is especially useful in aerospace and automotive industries where weight reduction
can lead to substantial energy savings over the usable life of the product (Fig. 6).
In addition, AM also allows designers to consider modifying and combining
materials for micro- and mesostructures to create new properties, forms and function-
ality. AM can create three-dimensional lattices and trusses with specific mechanical,
thermal, optical and biological properties (Yan et al. 2012). In structural engineering,
the orientation and diameter of the individual struts within a truss or lattice can
be optimized to improve the stress distribution, strength and manufacturability
(Teufelhart and Reinhart 2012). Various optimization methods exist for the design
of periodic mesoscale cellular structures. Topology optimization is often used, but
the designer has to consider issues of homogenization (the individual cell must be
much smaller than the design space in all directions) and periodicity (the material
inside the cell must be such that it corresponds to the material in the adjoining cell).
Manufacturing constraints, such as minimum wall thickness and minimum feature
size, must also be considered. Although uniform lattices are common, there is no
limit to the number of cell types and volume fractions that can be used. For example,
structures can be topology optimized using different cell types and volume fractions
Functional, Technical and Economical Requirements Integration … 177

(Brackett et al. 2011). Cellular lattices can also have spatial variations (Rumpf et al.
2013). Because AM simultaneously creates an object’s material and geometry, it can
be used to create custom alloys and composite materials. For example, it is possible to
create custom mixes of powders and/or binders, to alternate feedstock materials and
to embed fibres in order to create in situ composites, increase mechanical strength,
modify the thermal expansion coefficient and obtain electrically tuneable stiffness.
Similarly, it is possible to control the porosity, microstructure and material proper-
ties of metal, polymer and ceramic parts through the choice of materials, process
parameters and build orientation. AM processes with micro- or nanoscale resolution
can also create custom surfaces, textures and porosities. Multi-material AM can be
used to produce multi-material topology optimized structures, custom laminates and
composites. Some AM processes can vary the material percentage composition in
different parts of the model to create functionally graded objects (Bobbio et al. 2017).
When teaching design with respect to the main benefits of AM, one has to con-
sider that AM’s direct digital workflow and freeform geometry can be combined to
fabricate objects with almost any kind of complexity and any degree of customiza-
tion. This includes products that can be custom-fit to an existing person or object;
products that can be personalized based on individual or group preferences and mass-
customized products that can be produced with infinite variations. This is the case
when designing medical devices based on individual data. In the medical and dental
industries, AM is being used to produce a wide variety of personalized and bespoke
products including hearing aids; dental crowns, implants and dentures; biomedical
implants for hard and soft tissues; customized casts, splints and orthotics and prosthe-
ses. AM is also used to produce patient-specific models to facilitate surgical planning
and surgical guides to improve accuracy and efficiency. When considering product
design, and especially when using AM, mass customization can be one important
differentiating factor when providing products dedicated to individuals. For example,
AM has been used to produce custom-fit consumer products such as running shoes
and earbuds, personalized products such as—eyeglasses and bespoke objects such as
3D portraits created from photographs or 3D scans. Designers and artists have also
used AM to customize furniture and lighting fixtures to produce unique artefacts.

3 Constraints and Quality Considerations in Design for

Additive Manufacturing

While AM seems to have unlimited potential, it does not have unlimited capabil-
ities. Designers must take into account many types of constraints, including those
associated with CAD and the digitization of their ideas; the digital and physical dis-
cretization of the parts to be produced; the characteristics of AM processes and the
current capabilities of AM machines; the impact of AM processing on material prop-
erties and the requirements for processing materials using various AM techniques;
new challenges and requirements associated with metrology and quality control;
178 A. Bernard et al.

through-life requirements and considerations such as maintenance, repair and recy-

cling; and external factors including the regulatory environment. While many of these
constraints also apply to other types of manufacturing technologies, the bottom-up
nature of AM means they can have very different implications for designs, the design
process and the intermediate artefacts that are created to support production. When
considering the AM value chain, producing digital models for AM is challenging
because most commercially available CAD programs are parametric NURBS sys-
tems. These are well suited to modelling geometries associated with traditional man-
ufacturing processes (extrusions, revolves, lofts, etc.) but are often inadequate for
the more organic shapes and complex, multi-scale geometries associated with AM.
In addition, traditional CAD systems cannot generate multi-scale cellular and lat-
tice structures, model or denote colour, specify the material to use, indicate material
variation within an object, or specify tolerances. To overcome these limitations, AM
CAD systems require a new interface that can develop complex shapes and struc-
tures and a data structure that can store their properties. Researchers are working to
overcome CAD and digitalization constraints by developing new data formats that
can handle material related information. Multi-material capability has also been built
into the AMF format. However, there remain many challenges when designing for
heterogeneity taking into account the shape and material distribution to meet the func-
tionality, requirements, or constraints of the artefact. Issues include what granularity
to consider during the design phase, how to handle material variation analytically,
and whether the resulting design can be satisfactorily manufactured using a given
AM process. The coupling between the design, representation, analysis, optimization
and manufacture still needs to be resolved. This coupling effort is necessary because
manufacturing parameters have a substantial influence on the final result with respect
to all characteristics of the final object, in particular, the layer thickness, the man-
ufacturing direction and the support structures. Post-treatments are also influenced
by these AM process parameters and the global economic performance depends on
the value chain effectiveness and robustness (Thompson et al. 2016a). For example,
even if supports are needed for some processes, they can be minimized, and con-
sequently, manufacturing time, material consumption and finishing operations can
be optimized. These considerations should be taken into account when defining the
design and production strategy, otherwise, they may result in costly redesign later in
the product development process. The process-specific characteristics, machine spe-
cific constraints, choice of material(s) and in some cases the support strategy, place
limitations on the parts that can be built and define the qualities and characteristics
of the parts. These build parameters determine the warpage, shrinkage, accuracy and
precision of the part; the dimensional stability; the surface roughness; the minimum
feature size; the minimum spacing between features; the maximum aspect ratio of
a feature; and the unsupported and supported feature shapes and sizes that can be
produced. Given these constraints, designers must choose an AM process that can
produce the specified part in the specified material with the required quality, choose
a non-AM process or combination of AM and traditional processes that have the
required capabilities, or modify the design and its production strategy to compensate
for the constraints that are imposed by AM.
Functional, Technical and Economical Requirements Integration … 179

Because of all of these influential factors, teaching design in the field of AM

requires new design rules. A number of AM design guides have been published
to outline process and machine specific constraints and considerations. Materialize
published 19 design guides for a variety of materials (Materialise 2015). Each guide
provides a set of ‘design specifications’ that include minimum wall thickness, mini-
mum detail size, expected accuracy, maximum part size, clearance and if interlocking
or enclosed parts are possible. These are followed by a set of ‘basic rules, tips and
tricks’ that are material and process-specific. Stratasys published three guides that
address DMLS (Stratasys 2015a), FDM (Stratasys 2015b) and laser sintering (Strata-
sys 2015c). These are also process-specific with little overlap in content. Shapeways
published design guidelines for 16 materials (Shapeways 2016). Each guide includes
the minimum and maximum bounding box, minimum supported and unsupported
wall thickness and wire size, minimum embossed and engraved detail, minimum
escape holes for entrapped material, if enclosed and interlocking parts are possible, if
multiple parts per file is possible, the expected accuracy and the expected look and feel
of material. Additional material specific information such as design tips and informa-
tion about handling and care of the final parts is also included. 3D systems published
two design guides that focus on application-specific considerations for brass (3D
Systems 2015a) and plastic (3D Systems 2015b) SLS components that include fea-
tures such as internal channels, cages, assemblies, interlocking/woven parts, springs,
hinges, snap fits and threads. In the academic literature, Adam and Zimmer (2014)
presented a catalogue of design rules for laser sintering, laser melting and FDM
that address geometric constraints such as sharp edges, element transitions, unsup-
ported features and feature spacing. Additional process-specific design rules have
been proposed for Fused Deposition Modelling (FDM) (Teitelbaum 2009), Selective
Laser Melting (SLM) (Thomas 2009), Electron Beam Melting (EBM) (Vayre et al.
2013) and Wire Arc Additive Manufacturing (WAAM) (Mehnen et al. 2014). While
design rules and guidelines can provide a useful starting point, they do not provide
information about individual machines and local capabilities.

4 Cost Considerations in Design for Additive


When designing, it is important to be aware of the impact of design decisions and

choices with respect to different Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). The use of
functional analysis helps to define those KPIs and the corresponding expected level
of performance. Cost is one of these KPIs and when using AM, it is not always
easy to anticipate the direct cost and potential cost savings in the early stages of
design. Very often, key factors such as part complexity and quality are chosen to
explore basic models that could give some close approximations of the final cost. It
is very important to be very careful when approximating the cost of AM production
because it is often viewed as one of the biggest barriers to adoption in industry. AM
180 A. Bernard et al.

costs are usually divided into well-structured direct production costs (e.g. labour,
material and machine costs) and ill-structured costs (related to build failures, trans-
portation, inventory, etc.) (Thomas and Gilbert 2014). Early cost models focused
on the well-structured costs and were intended to compare AM processes to each
other or traditional manufacturing processes and to identify strategies for process
and product cost optimization.
Hopkinson and Dickens (2003) proposed one of the earliest generic AM cost
models. This model assumes that one product will be produced on the same machine
for the entire economic lifespan of the machine. It includes machine costs (purchase,
depreciation and maintenance), labour costs (operator, setup and post-processing)
and material costs (direct material costs and material cost for support structures).
Ruffo et al. (2006) expanded upon that work to create a more flexible and realis-
tic cost model that included different parts in a single build; indirect costs such as
administrative costs, part design and production overhead; and the cost of powder
material reuse and waste. More recently, Atzeni and Salmi (2012) developed a model
to estimate the cost of Direct Metal Laser Sintering (DMLS) metal parts. It included
machine costs (including interest and maintenance over a 5-year usable life), mate-
rial costs (volume multiplied by 1.1 to compensate for support and waste) and pre-
and post-processing costs such as labour. Many variations of these cost models exist
in the literature. Li (2006) included labour costs for pre- and post-processing, mate-
rial costs (part volume/0.7 to account for support and material waste), machine cost
per hour (purchase cost over annual utilization and years until return) and over-
head (rent, electricity, etc.). More recently, Grimm (2010) considered pre-printing
and post-processing time; capital costs (machines, facilities, etc.); annual operating
costs (service, maintenance, consumables, material disposal, etc.); and hourly costs
(assuming a 60% utilization rate). Baumers (2012) considered total indirect cost per
machine hour (machine costs, overhead, labour, utilization rates and usable equip-
ment lives), material cost and electricity costs. Gibson et al. (2010) included labour
costs (including setting up the build, post-processing and cleaning and resetting the
machine), machine purchase cost (allocated based on the part build time and machine
usable life), machine operation costs (including maintenance, utilities, floor space,
overhead, etc.) and material costs (based on part volume, multiplied by up to 1.5
to account for support and multiplied by up to 7 to account for material waste).
Lindeman et al. (2012) built on the work of Gibson et al. with an extensive model
to define machine costs. They introduced a part complexity factor to allow for the
increased time needed to design support structures and place complex parts in the
build environment. Rickenbacher et al. (2013) developed one of the most compre-
hensive models to date. Their model includes detailed cost estimates based on the full
SLM process chain and is suitable for jobs with different parts sizes, complexities
and quantities. One of the most critical issues is to determine the machine work-
ing time (build time) with respect to the specific characteristics of a given machine
(Zhang and Bernard 2013). The build time dictates how machine costs are allocated
to a given part. It is therefore essential for accurate AM cost estimations (di Angelo
and di Stefano 2011). Existing build time models (Zhang et al. 2015) can be grouped
into 3 categories: models dedicated to one process using a limit set of parameters;
Functional, Technical and Economical Requirements Integration … 181

generic build time models that use many parameters to estimate build times; and
parametric models that use neural networks to predict production times based on
historic data. Although the energy consumption of the AM processes is important
from life cycle and sustainability perspectives (Kellens et al. 2011), it plays a minor
role in cost comparisons today.

5 Conclusions

This chapter has presented the major design opportunities, constraints and costs
associated with DfAM. To achieve the full benefits of AM, designers must learn to
think differently while focusing on creating robust industrial solutions with added
value. Design theories, processes, methods, tools and techniques must be combined or
developed to address the inherent coupling between material, geometry and quality
in these systems. Specialized and application-specific tools must be developed to
support the design of cellular structures, metamaterials, heterogeneous artefacts and
biological scaffolds. It must be acknowledged that each build is a design artefact with
its own requirements and constraints and its own features (e.g. support structures,
part layout, etc.) to be designed and optimized. Thus, DfAM must extend beyond the
product to the production system and consider the entire value chain (Zhang et al.
With respect to this last remark, teaching should be practiced with a real systemic
vision of AM by considering the different influence factors that relate to the lifecycle
requirements of the parts. Indeed, in particular, AM will continue to redefine the roles
and relationships of the designer and the manufacturer for truly global rapid product
development (Bernard and Fischer 2002). In fact, with AM, teaching design becomes
teaching knowledge-based lifecycle design of the product based on the powerfulness
of additive manufacturing. To face such a goal, the developments of methods and
tools must be compiled and made available to support design activities and training
in educational institutions and in industry.


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184 A. Bernard et al.

Professor A. Bernard 58, graduated in 1982, Ph.D. in 1989, was associate-Professor, from 1990
to 1996 in Centrale Paris. From September 1996 to October 2001, he was Professor in CRAN,
Nancy I, in the ‘Integrated Design and Manufacturing’ team. Since October 2001, he has been
Professor at Centrale Nantes and Dean for Research from 2007 to 2012. He is a researcher in
LS2 N laboratory (UMR CNRS 6004) leading the ‘Systems Engineering –Products-Processes-
Performances’ team. His research topics are KM, PLM, information system modelling, interoper-
ability, enterprise modelling, systems performance assessment, virtual engineering, additive man-
ufacturing. He supervised more than 30 Ph.D. students. He published more than 150 papers in
refereed international journals and books. He is vice-President of AFPR (French Association on
Rapid prototyping and Additive Manufacturing), vice-chairman of WG5.1 of IFIP (Global Product
Development for the whole product lifecycle) and member of CIRP Council. He co-coordinated
and coauthored two books in French in the field of Additive manufacturing: Le prototypage rapide
(Hermès 1998); Fabrication additive (Dunod 2015). Actually, he is leading an Industry 4.0 project
at Centrale Nantes and is developing a learning factory with its digital twin.

Dr. Mary Kathryn Thompson is a professional author, independent scholar, freelance editor
and staff engineer at GE Additive. She earned her SB, SM and Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineering
from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), and has held faculty positions at the Korea
Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) and the Technical University of Den-
mark (DTU). Her research takes an integrated, interdisciplinary, multi-scale and often exploratory
approach to design, manufacturing and product development.

Giovanni Moroni is Full Professor in Manufacturing Technology and Systems since 2005 at
Politecnico di Milano, Mechanical Engineering Department, where he coordinates the Manufac-
turing and Production Systems research line and he is a member of the Scientific Committee of
the Department. At present he is Associate Member of CIRP—The International Academy for
Production Engineering); member of AITeM—the Italian Association for Manufacturing—and of
the Board of AFIL—Lombardy Region Intelligent Factory Association. Recently, he has been
a National High-end Foreign Experts at School of Mechanical Engineering, Tongji University,
Shanghai, P.R. of China (01/2015–12/2017). His main activities are related to geometrical product
specification and verification, knowledge-based process planning and digital manufacturing.

Dr. T. Vaneker 49, is assistant professor at the University of Twente, the Netherlands and is the
ad-interim head of the Manufacturing Systems research group. He co-founded TEAM, the Twente
center of Excellence for Additive Manufacturing. Furthermore, he is the program director of the
PDEng program on robotics. His research interest focuses on additive manufacturing and indus-
trial automation and robotics. From an educational point of view, he is involved in the develop-
ment and execution of the design programs within Mechanical Engineering and Industrial design

Dr. Eujin Pei is the Director for the Product Design and Product Design Engineering programmes
at Brunel University London. His research focuses on Design for Additive Manufacturing and
Applications for Functionally Graded Additive Manufacturing. He is the Convenor for the Inter-
national Standards Organisation Technical Committee ISO/TC261/WG4 and Chairs’ meetings
related to Data Transfer and Design for Additive Manufacture. He is Chair for the British Stan-
dards Institute BSI/AMT/8 for Additive Manufacturing. Eujin is also a Chartered Engineer (CEng)
and a Chartered Technological Product Designer (CTPD). He is active in various industry and
knowledge transfer projects in the UK and across EU. Eujin is also the Managing Editor for the
Progress in Additive Manufacturing Journal published by SpringerNature.

Claude Barlier Pr HDR, graduated as agrégé from ENS Cachan and with a Doctoral degree from
ENSAM Paris. Claude Barlier specializes in Additive Manufacturing and in the Digital Product
Development field. He was Professor of the Mines-Telecom Institute, until 2016. In the 1980s, his
Functional, Technical and Economical Requirements Integration … 185

research led to the patented additive manufacturing process Stratoconception® and the patented
machining monitoring system Actarus®. In 1991, based on his patented work, he created, and
since then heads CIRTES SA in Saint-Dié-des-Vosges, a Contractual Research Company, which
is a leader in Additive Manufacturing (rapid prototyping and tooling) and in advanced machin-
ing. In 2000, he initiated with Mines Nancy and Mines Albi, the GIP-InSIC Engineering School,
Higher Institute of Engineering Design of which he was the director from its creation until Decem-
ber 2015. In 2010, with 20 associated industrial and financial partners, he created a national level
innovation platform INORI SAS, which he has since then chaired. He is the founder of VirtuReal®
based in Saint-Dié-des-Vosges, an European centre of excellence for research to industrialization.
C. Barlier is the author of numerous patents and publications, several reference works and soft-
ware in mechanics at Editions Dunod, Casteilla and Foucher. He coordinated the collective work
‘Conception en Mécanique Industrielle’, from the collection ‘Les Référentiels Dunod’ published
by DUNOD. He is also coauthor with Alain Bernard of the reference book on Additive Manufac-
turing, published by DUNOD in September 2015.

External Resources: École centrale de Nantes is a French engineering university established in

1919 and ranked within the top engineering schools in France. https://www.ec-nantes.fr.
Additive Manufacturing Systems for
Medical Applications: Case Studies

Henrique Amorim Almeida, Ana Filipa Costa, Carina Ramos, Carlos Torres,
Mauricio Minondo, Paulo J. Bártolo, Amanda Nunes, Daniel Kemmoku
and Jorge Vicente Lopes da Silva

1 Introduction

Additive manufacturing is a bioinspired layer-by-layer fabrication technique that

emerged in the mid of 1980s, and since then is growing very fast. Currently, additive
manufacturing is being used in several fields such as aerospace, aeronautics, con-
sumer goods, construction and medicine (Verhoef et al. 2018). It is a key technology
for the implementation of smart, efficient and minimal waste strategies for mass
personalization. The use of additive manufacturing in the medical field is expanding
very fast due to the ability to produce complex, low weight and personalized medical
devices in a wide range of biocompatible, degradable and nondegradable materi-
als such as polymers, metals, ceramics and composites (Tibbitt et al. 2015). It also
allows printing biological materials such as cells. In this field, additive manufactur-
ing is being used to produce passive devices for repairing and restore applications
and active devices for repairing, restoring, and regeneration (Ligon et al. 2017). This
chapter introduces the main additive manufacturing techniques being used in the
medical field, discusses main process steps and presents several case studies includ-
ing the development of a hand-wrist-forearm orthosis, personalized insoles and bone
composite scaffolds for regenerative medicine.

H. A. Almeida (B) · A. F. Costa

School of Technology and Management, Polytechnic Institute of Leiria, Leiria, Portugal
e-mail: henrique.almeida@ipleiria.pt
C. Ramos
3D EVER—HP Certified Reseller, Marinha Grande, Portugal
C. Torres · M. Minondo · P. J. Bártolo
School of Mechanical, Aerospace and Civil Engineering, Manchester Biomanufacturing Centre,
The University of Manchester, Manchester, UK
A. Nunes · D. Kemmoku · J. V. L. da Silva
3D Technologies Research Group, Renato Archer Information Technology Center, Campinas,

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019 187

E. Pei et al. (eds.), Additive Manufacturing—Developments in Training
and Education, https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-76084-1_13
188 H. A. Almeida et al.

2 Overview of Additive Manufacturing Systems

in Biomedical Applications

Additive manufacturing is defined as the process of joining materials in order to make

objects from 3D digital models in a layer-by-layer way, as opposed to either sub-
tractive or shape forming manufacturing technologies (Chua and Leong 2014). The
main features of additive manufacturing are its ability to produce parts of virtually
any shape and high complexity in one process step, with less material and energy,
reducing assembly requirements by consolidating parts into a single component. It
disrupts the traditional supply chain, allowing for goods to be produced closer to the
point of use at the time of need and dramatically shrinking the time between design
creation and prototyping (Gibson et al. 2015). It is also the ideal technology to cre-
ate lightweight structures without requiring expensive tooling. It is also possible to
process a wide range of materials such as polymers, ceramics, metals, composites
and biological materials (e.g. cells and growth factors). Multi-material objects, geo-
metric or material functionally gradient structures can also be produced at multiple
scales. Main limitations of additive manufacturing processes are related to the slow
build rates, production costs resulting from the slow build rate and material costs
(metal powder and photopolymers), component anisotropy, poor surface finish and
dimensional accuracy. Additive manufacturing processes for medical applications
comprise the following techniques (Almeida and Correia 2016; Gibson et al. 2015):
• Vat Photopolymerization—an additive manufacturing process in which a liquid
photopolymer in a vat is selectively cured by light-activated polymerization.
• Powder bed Fusion—an additive manufacturing process in which thermal energy
selectively fuses regions of a powder bed.
• Material Extrusion—an additive manufacturing process in which material is selec-
tively dispensed through a nozzle.
• Binder Jetting—an additive manufacturing process in which a liquid bonding agent
is selectively deposited to join powder materials.
• Material Jetting—an additive manufacturing process in which droplets of build
material are selectively deposited.
The information chain applied to additive manufacturing processes for medical
applications comprises the following steps as illustrated in Fig. 1:
More specifically, Fig. 2 provides a general overview of the necessary steps to pro-
duce passive/non-biological and active/biological structures for medical applications
using additive manufacturing. The first step is the generation of the corresponding
computer solid model through one of the currently available medical imaging tech-
niques, such as computed tomography (CT) or magnetic resonance imaging. These
imaging methods produce continuous volumetric data (voxel-based data), that pro-
vides the input data for the digital model generation (Almeida and Bártolo 2013). If
the external geometric body data is necessary, common 3D scanning systems may be
used. Depending on the type of product, two different routes can be considered. The
fabrication of passive products usually requires the use of nondegradable materials
Additive Manufacturing Systems for Medical … 189

3D Modelling

Imaging Data

3D Data Physical
3D Model STL File SLI File
Origin Model

Fig. 1 Flowchart of digital information to produce physical models

and the fabrication process follows the steps commonly used to produce any kind
of products using additive manufacturing. Active products usually require the use of
cells. They can be directly printed embedded in hydrogels or seeded on biodegradable
3D structures. In most cases, constructs are pre-cultured before implantation.

2.1 Vat Photopolymerization Processes

Vat photopolymerization has been used by the Texas Cardiac Arrhythmia Institute
to produce accurate patients’ hearts models based on CT data for surgery planning.
This technique is also being extensively used for dental applications (Fig. 3), hearing
aids and lattice structures and biodegradable scaffolds for tissue engineering.

2.2 Powder Bed Fusion

Powder bed fusion processes have been explored by Ekso Bionics (Northern Cali-
fornia, USA) to produce customized, lightweight parts for a bionic suit for a patient
confined to a wheelchair as a result of an accident (Fig. 4). This additive manufac-
turing technique has been also used to produce personalized medical devices such as
ankle/foot orthosis with improved material and design characteristics preventing, for
example, excessive sweating (Fig. 5) and lightweight orthopaedic titanium implants
and dental cobalt implants (Fig. 6). The EBM technique has been used to produce a
wide range of implants such as sculpt plates and acetabular cups (Fig. 7) and knee
implants with density gradients representing the high-end trabecular region (approx.
0.8 g/cm3 ) and the low-end cortical bone region (approx. 1.5 g/cm3 ) (Murr et al.
190 H. A. Almeida et al.

Fig. 2 Process flowchart for

the production of
passive/non-biological and
active/biological structures
for medical applications
using additive manufacturing
Additive Manufacturing Systems for Medical … 191

Fig. 3 Dental applications of vat photopolymerisation (EnvisionTEC 2017)

Fig. 4 Ekso Bionics suit

(3D Systems 2017)

2.3 Material Extrusion

For tissue engineering applications and to process biological materials, new systems
have been developed. An example is the BioScaffolder from Gesim, a biomanufac-
192 H. A. Almeida et al.

Fig. 5 Ankle/foot polymer orthosis (EOS 2017)

Fig. 6 a Orthopaedic titanium implants b Dental cobalt implants (EOS GmbH 2017)

turing extrusion-based system able to process synthetic polymers, polymer/ceramics

and soft materials such as hydrogels including biomolecular signals such as growth
factors (Fig. 8) (Gesim 2017).
Another example is the 3D-Bioplotter from EnvisionTEC capable of producing
a wide range of soft and hard scaffolds using single or multiple materials (Fig. 9)
(EnvisionTEC 2017).
Additive Manufacturing Systems for Medical … 193

Fig. 7 a Custom sculpt implant b Acetabular cups with integrated lattice structures for improved
osseointegration (Arcam EBM 2017)

Fig. 8 a BioScaffolder 3.1 system b medical-grade PCL scaffold to reconstruct the shape and
volume of a female breast after mastectomy c human cells printed onto an alginate/hydrogel scaffold
(Gesim 2017)

Fig. 9 a Fourth generation 3D Bioplotter manufacturer series b with a schematic of the building
platform (EnvisionTEC 2017)

Extrusion processes have been extensively used in the medical field, for example,
to develop a more realistic airway trainer (Fig. 10a), for the fabrication of customized
moulds for the pressing of a thin titanium sheet that will act as an orbital floor
implant (Fig. 10b), for the fabrication of bone bio-models for in-depth assessment
and pre-surgical rehearsal resulting in a smoother operation process in which implants
194 H. A. Almeida et al.

Fig. 10 a Technician assembling a prototype airway trainer. b Patient’s missing orbital floor (left)
versus original shape before impact (right) and the customized mould for titanium sheet pressing. c
Corrective osteotomy (realignment of bone from deformity) to complex bone fractures. d Custom
orthopaedic exoskeleton

are more accurately fitted to the curvature of the patient’s bone (Fig. 10c) and the
fabrication of exoskeletons (Figs. 10d) (Stratasys 2017).

2.4 Inkjet Printing Processes

Inkjet printing has been used to produce vascular tissue samples and other types of
tissue constructs for bone, cartilage and nerve regeneration (Cyfuse 2017; Itoh et al.
2015). Other examples include middle ear prostheses and realistic anatomic models
(Fig. 11).

3 Case Studies of Additive Manufacturing in Healthcare

Additive manufacturing is considered a groundbreaking technology mainly because

of its potential to be used in areas like healthcare. Figure 12 shows many possibilities
of additive manufacturing to be used in the healthcare ranging from specific devices
to research protocols. One key element is the integration of CT scanner dataset to
the additive manufacturing machines by means of medical image processing tool
associated to CAD and CAE tools to directly or indirectly produce such solutions.
Additive Manufacturing Systems for Medical … 195

Fig. 11 Realistic anatomic presentations models of the a hand and the b head illustrating all existing
tissues (Stratasys Polyjet 2017)

Fig. 12 The use of additive manufacturing to improve healthcare solutions

Next sections will provide some real case studies of using additive manufacturing as
new healthcare technologies.
196 H. A. Almeida et al.

Fig. 13 3D digital scanning procedure

3.1 Hand-Wrist-Forearm Orthosis

An orthosis is an external component applied to the body in order to facilitate the

execution of a task, to compensate for any deformities, reinforcing treatment of dis-
ease or even prevent diseases in the trunk and limbs. There is a great diversity of
orthoses for the trunk, with different characteristics and different purposes which can
be classified into Cervical Orthoses; Cervical Thoracic Orthoses; Cervico-Thoraco-
Lumbo-Sacral Orthoses; Thoraco-Lumbo-Sacral Orthoses; Lumbo-Sacral Orthoses;
Sacroiliac Orthoses and Hand-Wrist-Forearm Orthoses (Matos et al. 2017). Com-
mercially available orthoses are not personalized and all have a negative aesthetical
impact during the time prescribed to use. Combining digital scanning and addi-
tive manufacturing systems into the production of this particular family of products
increases both the functionality of the products as well as its aesthetics and appealing
design towards the customers. For a better understanding of the steps involved in a
medical application, a case study of a hand-wrist-forearm orthosis is presented. The
case study will follow the process flowchart presented in Fig. 2. The first main step
consists in obtaining the CAD data of the outer shape of the patient’s hand-wrist-
forearm in order to design the orthosis. In this case, a 3D digital scanning system
(GOM ATOS CORE) with a scanning volume of 300 cm3 , was used as illustrated in
Fig. 13. The scanned data is then processed (removal of noise data, filtering geomet-
ric data, filling of gaps and wholes, point cloud matching) to create a corresponding
CAD model. Figure 14 shows the completed hand-wrist-forearm CAD model (light
grey) with an initial solid design of the orthosis (dark grey).
Finally, the optimized design was produced in polyamide (PA 12) using the inkjet
HP Jet Fusion 3D 4200 Printing system. In this case, the CAD model is manipulated
using the machine building manager software (SmartStream 3D Build Manager) and
positioned in the printing platform in three different positions, namely laying down,
lateral and upright (Fig. 15) in order to determine building time. In the laying down
position, the two halves of the orthosis occupy 1.78% of the building chamber that
corresponds to a maximum building height of 63.05 mm and a building time of 3 h
Additive Manufacturing Systems for Medical … 197

Fig. 14 Hand-wrist-forearm CAD model (light grey) and orthosis (dark grey)

Fig. 15 a Laying down, b lateral and c upright position of the orthosis parts for production

59 min 10 s. In the lateral position, both parts occupy 1.3% of the building chamber
that corresponds to a maximum building height of 86.54 mm and a building time of
4 h 54 min 09 s. Finally, in the upright position, the two halves of the orthosis occupy
0.36% of the building chamber that corresponds to a maximum building height of
310.02 mm and a building time of 13 h 37 min 30 s. As the staircase effect was not
significant in any of the trees considered orientations, the laying down position was
selected due to the lowest building time. After printing, the models were submitted
to a series of post-processing steps, namely, excess powder removal, and then air
jetting for the removal of the unprocessed powder on the part (Figs. 16 and 17) and
finally tested (Fig. 18).

3.2 Finger Orthosis

Another case of orthosis production using additive manufacturing is a device to attach

on fingers to keep them opened by means of strings. The patient is a pianist and con-
ductor, one of the most important world interpreters of Bach compositions. Due to
198 H. A. Almeida et al.

Fig. 16 a Building chamber removal from printer b building chamber insertion into the processing
station c vacuum to remove of the excess powder and d parts with excess powder

Fig. 17 a Air jetting chamber for excess powder removal and b final parts of the orthosis

Fig. 18 Patient testing the orthosis

the advanced age and genetic predisposition, the patient suffers from a neurological
disease that makes it difficult to control opening some fingers, and consequently not
permitting a good piano performance. Together with his physiotherapist, engineers
developed an experimental device that could not occupy space between fingers guar-
antying free relative movements. Figure 19 shows the process utilized to produce the
experimental orthotic device. His hand was digitized opened using a laser scanner
(Creaform HandScan 3D) and generating a 3D mesh. The 3D model of the hand
Additive Manufacturing Systems for Medical … 199

Fig. 19 Personalized finger orthotic device for a patient with neurological disease that affects finger
opening. a scanning the patient’s hand b CAD Design based on 3D model of the hand c orthotic
parts printed in Cr–Co metal additive manufacturing, after structural optimization using FEM d
orthotic device assembled e orthotic device mounted on the Polyamide model of the hand, and f
device mounted on a real hand (not the patient’s hand)

was used for the device design and Finite Element Method (FEM) simulation, con-
sidering metal material printed in a Selective Laser Melting machine (ConcepLaser
MLab 100). The 3D model of the hand was also printed in a Selective Laser Sintering
machine (3D Systems HiQ) using Polyamide 12 for fitting tests before sending it
to the patient for evaluation. The FEM simulation permitted to design thinner struc-
tures of about 0.5 mm. Three versions of the device were produced and tested by the
patient, always with physiotherapist assistance. All versions took into account some
premises like the good stiffness properties of the metal material used (Co–Cr), com-
plex geometries and monolithic structures with relative movement, obtained using
additive manufacturing advantages. The design took into account usability, easy to
wear, and facility to calibrate the forces of the strings to keep fingers opened with
the right forces to permit open–close movement under patient control.

3.3 Mandibular Reconstruction Using Autologous Bone and

Cutting Guides

Figure 20 shows a patient with a severe anomaly in the low jaw in need of recon-
struction and the doctor’s decision was to use an autologous bone harvested from
tibia to remodel the mandible in a more anatomic shape with possibility to fix dental
implants after healing in the future. A series of CT scan images were taken from the
200 H. A. Almeida et al.

Fig. 20 A surgical planning for mandible reconstruction with autologous bone a STL file of the
patient’s maxilla and mandible obtained from image processing on CT dataset b mirroring mandible
to start virtual reconstruction c virtual reconstruction of mandible using tibia’s bone d and e virtual
model of tibia and cutting guides designed to optimize harvesting time and amount of bone and f
virtual planning and anatomical models of the maxilla, mandible and tibia printed in Polyamide 12
(3D Systems—HiQ)

head of patient and tibia. The CT images were segmented and a STL file generated
using specific open-source software (CTI Renato Archer—InVesalius) for medical
image processing, both from mandible and tibia. The patient mandible was mirrored
in STL manipulator software (Materialize—Magics) in order to reconstruct missing
regions of the mandible bone. The tibia’s bone was measured to complete the missing
bones of reconstructed mandible and cutting guides were designed to cut the tibia
in many small parts for the mandible graft. The whole process focused on reducing
surgery time and costs, besides risks for the patient with less morbidity due to the
second surgery for bone harvesting in the tibia. All virtual models of the anatomies,
guides and virtual planning were printed in Polyamide 12 to be sterilized and used
in intra surgery. The guides were used for precise bone cutting.

3.4 Customized Cranial Prostheses

Cranioplasty is a very common procedure to repair cranial defects due to many kinds
of accidents that can lead to a cranial bone loss, many times due to a cranial decom-
Additive Manufacturing Systems for Medical … 201

Fig. 21 Customized cranial plates produced in PMMA a Mould produced in additive manufactur-
ing in Polyamide 12 b Spreading the PMMA mix inside the mould c closing the mould d opening
the mould to reveal the customized cranial plate after cooling down the PMMA e fitting tests in a
skull biomodel, and f placing PMMA cranial plate in the patient

pression to relief intracranial pressure. Materials and surgical techniques are still in
development and the use of medical imaging associated with additive manufacturing
can bring great potential to solve elegantly this problem. A patient with need for
cranioplasty presents drawbacks not only socially because of his/her appearance but
also the psychological ones. Biological materials like autografts and xenograft from
many different regions of the body are still in use but can cause higher morbidity.
Synthetic materials as metal alloys, polymers, and ceramics are also options. In the
polymer’s domain, the Poly(methyl methacrylate) (PMMA) is a thermosetting mate-
rial that has been used for bone repair and devices for bone attachment for more
than 60 years and is also known as bone cement. PMMA is an ordinary product in
the medical market, very easy to manipulate and shape, can incorporate drugs, and
cost-effective. One of the most important drawbacks of PMMA is its exothermic
polymerization reaction when the two components are mixed before hardening, that
can cause burns to the patient’s tissue. Figure 21 presents a cranial reconstruction
technique that uses medical imaging, CAD design and additive manufacturing to
produce moulds for customized cranial plates production. This kind of device can be
sterilized and brought to the surgery. During surgery, a mix of the two components of
PMMA is produced and moulded. After moulding the cranial plate, it can be fit tested
in the patient’s skull biomodel for eventual adjustments and implanted in patient with
a high degree of customization without the drawbacks abovementioned. Different
from metal alloy plates for cranioplasty, the PMMA can be calculated to behave like
bone in the case of a second, rare but possible accident. In this case, the rest of the
bone will not be impacted due to the energy dissipation breaking the PMMA and not
the bone itself.
202 H. A. Almeida et al.

Fig. 22 a Foot plantar regions and sensor positions outline; b Insole design

3.5 Personalized Insoles

Insoles have been widely investigated in order to reduce the impact forces in the plan-
tar pressure of the feet, as a method to treat medical diseases such as diabetic foot
or knee osteoarthritis and to provide comfort to the end user. Currently, customized
insoles are produced using labour intensive manual manufacturing processes char-
acterized by high production times and costs, making its use restricted to critical
patients and specific applications. Additive manufacturing plays a key role in the
development of a novel strategy to develop customized made insoles. This strategy
allows designing zonal regions in the insole with different stiffness regions defined
according to the information obtained from a pressure distribution analysis of the
Plantar pedal pressures and specific forces were determined in an individual who
had no known history of foot problems and no pathological gate. Two different tests
were employed. First, a pressure distribution mapping during both static pose and
walking was performed with the individual barefoot. Second, force sensors were
used to determine specific forces and nine different points in the foot (Fig. 22a) with
the individual using casual shoes. The measurements were taken on both feet.
From the first test, a pressure distribution map was obtained from the static analysis
(Fig. 23) and a force versus time variation was obtained from the dynamic analysis
(Fig. 24a). From the second tests, force variation with time was obtained from a
number of steps taken and the obtained data analysed to produce mean results for the
analysis. For the insole design, both individual’s feet were scanned using commercial
handy scan 3D Exsys Scan System. The insole was divided into nine parts (Fig. 22b),
allowing to modify each part’s mechanical characteristics by changing material or
fabrication parameters. In the case reported here, only silicon is considered. Insoles
were produced using the EnvisionTEC 3D Bioplotter system. The produced insole
was then tested by the patient and a second force versus time variation was obtained
from the dynamic analysis (Fig. 24b). As illustrated in Fig. 24, the patient produced
much less force versus time variation during the gait analysis of the left foot. The
Additive Manufacturing Systems for Medical … 203

Fig. 23 a Static pressure distribution mapping example; b Left plantar pressure distribution map-
ping from walking analysis without insole (left) and with the produced insole (right)

force values reduced from pick values of 227.17 lb and 268.73 lb to 90.16 lb and
93.41 lb. A reduction of 39.69% and 34.76%, respectively was achieved.

3.6 Bone Composite Scaffolds for Regenerative Medicine

Scaffolds are 3D porous structures that provide the right environment for cell attach-
ment, proliferation and differentiation. They must be biocompatible, biodegradable,
with adequate mechanical performance that depends on the target tissue. A wide
range of both organic and inorganic materials and composites have been explored
for the fabrication of scaffolds for different tissues such as bone, cartilage, skin, nerve
and muscle. The development of these scaffolds requires the following:
• The design of the scaffold using a CAD system;
• Material and fabrication process selection;
• Generation of G-Code instructions for scaffold fabrication;
• Characterisation: morphological; mechanical; degradation and biological (in vitro
cell studies and in vivo studies.
This case study corresponds to a composite scaffold for bone regeneration. The
scaffold was made using polycaprolactone/carbon nanotube (PCL/CNT) blends con-
taining different amounts of carbon nanotubes. Blends were prepared using a melt
blending process. Scaffolds were produced using an extrusion-based screw-assisted
system (3D Discovery, Regenhu) (Fig. 25) considering a 0o/90o lay-down pattern
(Fig. 26) to obtain pores with a regular square geometry, maintain a constant filament
distance of 730 µm. All the scaffolds were produced using a screw rotation velocity
of 22rev/m, a feed rate or deposition velocity of 22 mm/s and a layer thickness of
204 H. A. Almeida et al.

Fig. 24 a Force versus time curve for left foot walking analysis without insole; b Force versus time
curve for left foot walking analysis with produced insole

0.22 mm. The needle diameter used was 0.33 mm with an air pressure of 6 bar and
a processing temperature of 90 °C.
Carbon nanotubes are considered in order to improve mechanical properties and
to induce some electrical characteristics to the polymeric scaffolds allowing their
use for cell electrical stimulation. Scaffolds were morphologically accessed using
scanning electron microscopy, mechanical tested under compression and biologi-
cally characterized. Produced scaffolds present uniform pore distribution and well-
defined internal geometry. Adipose-derived human mesenchymal stem cells were
used (Fig. 27). Cell attachment/proliferation was accessed using the Alarmar blue
assay and cell differentiation accessed using the Alkaline Phosphatase (ALP) assay.

4 Conclusions

Additive manufacturing is a growing technology and has become part of mankind’s

daily life, namely, at a technological, economic and social level. It is a main topic of
Additive Manufacturing Systems for Medical … 205

Fig. 25 3D discovery system from RegenHU

Fig. 26 a PCL and b PCL/CNT scaffolds

university lectures worldwide and it is applied by every industrial sector; in particular,

it has been promoted in the medical field where its impact has increased and more
and more systems are being acquired and developed for healthcare applications. Due
to its capability to produce complex geometric parts directly from medical imaging
data using biocompatible materials, additive manufacturing is a key technology for
the fabrication of external (e.g. exoskeletons, or orthoses) and internal (permanent
or temporary tissue implants) medical devices.
206 H. A. Almeida et al.

Fig. 27 Cell attachment and cell spreading on PCL scaffold with 0.2% CNT

This chapter presents an overview of additive manufacturing systems and how they
have been used in the medical field for the production of medical devices. The main
additive manufacturing techniques used are presented, main process steps detailed
and several case studies such as the development of a hand-wrist-forearm and fin-
ger orthosis, mandibular reconstruction, cranial prostheses, personalized insoles and
bone composite scaffolds for tissue engineering. In spite of the potential of addi-
tive manufacturing in the medical field, there are still many challenges to overcome.
Some of these challenges include the need to produce functionality gradient struc-
tures; the need for more sophisticated systems (e.g. hybrid systems) able to create
structures mimicking the biological ones (e.g. highly hierarchical and multi-material
structures); novel in situ bioprinting strategies; and the improvement of mechani-
cal properties in the fatigue behaviour. Standards are also required for the future
developments of the field.
Additive Manufacturing Systems for Medical … 207


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Gibson, I., Rosen, D., & Stucker, B. (2015). Additive Manufacturing Technologies—3D printing,
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(ISBN: 978-1-138-71374-1).
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(2010). Next-generation biomedical implants using additive manufacturing of complex, cellular
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effect of additive manufacturing on global energy demand: An assessment using a bottom-up
approach. Energy Policy, 112, 349–360.

Henrique Almeida is an Associate Professor of the Mechanical Engineering Department

where he currently lectures Additive Manufacturing, Biofabrication, Mechanical Technology,
Ergonomics, Anthropometrics and Biomechanics Design. He has a Ph.D. in Mechanical Engineer-
ing from the University of Aveiro. Member of the Editorial Board of ‘Progress in Additive Man-
ufacturing’ from Springer and ‘Rapid Prototyping Journal’ from Emerald and Review Editorial
Board Member of several journals from Frontiers, namely ‘Biomechanics’, ‘Pediatric Otolaryn-
gology’ and ‘Computer-Aided and Digital Manufacturing Technologies’. He has been engaged in
several national and international projects funded by different funding agencies.

Ana Filipa Costa is an M.Sc. student of Product Design Engineering. She graduated in Biome-
chanics from the School of Technology and Management of the Polytechnic Institute of Leiria
208 H. A. Almeida et al.

where she developed a research project based on 3D printing of a hand-wrist-arm orthosis. Cur-
rently works in a company of additive manufacturing and engineering solutions.

Carina Ramos is the CEO of 3D EVER, as a Master in Engineering in Design and Product Devel-
opment from the School of Technology and Management of the Polytechnic Institute of Leiria and
has professional experience in powder bed additive manufacturing processes of both metal and
plastic powders.

Carlos Torres is a researcher in the Manchester Biomanufacturing Centre from the School of
Mechanical, Aerospace and Civil Engineering from The University of Manchester, UK. He grad-
uated in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Manchester and works in the design of
medical devices and scaffolds for tissue engineering applications.

Mauricio Minondo is a researcher in the Manchester Biomanufacturing Centre from the School
of Mechanical, Aerospace and Civil Engineering from The University of Manchester, UK. He
graduated in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Manchester and works in the design
of medical devices and scaffolds for tissue engineering applications.

Paulo Bártolo is Chair Professor on Advanced Manufacturing at the School of Mechanical,

Aerospace and Civil Engineering (MACE), University of Manchester (UK); Visiting Professor at
Nanyang University (Singapore); Professor of Biomaterials (Cathedra UNESCO) at the Univer-
sity of Habana (Cuba); Collaborator Professor of both the Advanced Manufacturing Group at the
Tecnológico de Monterrey (Mexico) and CIAUD (The Research Centre for Architecture, Urban-
ism and Design) a Centre of Excellence of the Portuguese Foundation for Science and Technol-
ogy based at the University of Lisbon (Portugal). At the School of MACE, he is the Head of the
Manufacturing Group, Director of the Medical Engineering Research Centre (MERC) and Group
Output Champion. At the University of Manchester is also member of the Management Board of
the EPSRC & MRC Centre for Doctoral Training (CDT) in Regenerative Medicine; member of
the Steering Committee of the ‘Nanotechnology in Medicine’ Network (NanoMed); responsible
for the definition of the Industry 4.0 Roadmap mapping all related activities within the different
Faculties and identifying challenges and opportunities; and coordinates the manufacturing activi-
ties at the £10 m Thomas Ashton Institute of Risk and Regulatory Research.

Amanda Nunes is a researcher in the Three-Dimensional Technologies Research Group—NT3D

in the R&D Program of 3D Technologies for Healthcare—ProMED and quality management
activities of the group. She graduated in Mathematics from the University of Passo Fundo. She
works in bioengineering using modelling and segmentation graphic tools integrated with additive
manufacturing technologies for complex surgical planning and medical devices development.

Daniel Kemmoku is researcher in the Three-Dimensional Technologies Research Group—NT3D

for 12 years since he graduated in mechanical engineering from the State University of Campinas.
His activities are mainly focused in bioengineering research using anatomical modelling and com-
puter simulations for medical and dental applications. Kemmoku has an MBA from University of
Girona in Spain.

Jorge Silva is a senior research at CTI Renato Archer where he started his research activities in
1988 in robotics and automation. He coordinated and participated in many R and D projects with
companies, national and international funding agencies. In 1997, he created the Three-dimensional
Research Group—NT3D at CTI Renato Archer as a pioneer in additive manufacturing activities
in Brazil, and since then is a coordinator. He holds a PhD in Chemical engineering, M.Sc. and
B.Sc. in electrical engineering.
Additive Manufacturing Systems for Medical … 209

External Resources: School of Technology and Management is currently the largest higher edu-
cation institution in the district of Leiria. It provides undergraduate and master’s degree, in the
areas of engineering, technology, management, public administration and science. In addition to
the aforementioned training courses, ESTG also promotes continuous training, service provision,
scientific research and technology transfer, in both national and international levels. https://www.
The 3D EVER is a Certified Reseller of HP in Portugal, dedicated to representing their 3D
printing technology named Multi Jet Fusion. This technology enables to print plastic parts in
voxel-by-voxel fashion with printing agents. http://3d-ever.pt/en/inicial.
The Manchester Biomanufacturing Centre is a world leading research centre in the field of
biomanufacturing. It integrates a group of multidisciplinary researchers and state-of-the-art equip-
ment. The research program focus, among other topics, on computer-aided design and manufactur-
ing of medical devices, biomaterials, design and fabrication of tissue scaffolds, tissue constructs
and drug delivery systems, cell printing and organ printing. http://www.mace.manchester.ac.uk/
Renato Archer Information Technology Center–CTI, is one of the many R&D institutions from
the Brazilian Science, Technology, Innovations and communications Ministry–MCTIC. CTI is
located in Campinas, Brazil, the most advanced technological and research region of Latin Amer-
ica. The Three-Dimensional Technologies Research Group–NT3D was established in 1997 and
since then is reference in the area of additive manufacturing, working closely with companies
and hundreds of hospitals and universities in interdisciplinary researches. One of the most known
research results of NT3D is the software InVesalius that is being used in 150 countries as an open-
source platform for medial imaging. https://www.cti.gov.br/en.
Professional Training of AM at the
European Level

Eurico G. Assunçao, Elvira Raquel Silva and Eujin Pei

1 Introduction

The mobility of professionals specializing in welding technology was established

long before the European Union advocated the need for international recognition of
professional qualifications. This need for international recognition of qualifications
by employers and local authorities was the starting point for designing the training and
qualification systems initiated by the European Federation for Welding, Joining and
Cutting (EWF) intended to qualify professionals in welding technology from blue-
to white-collared workers. Today, with a fast-growing interest and implementation
of Additive Manufacturing (AM), there is a high demand and a clear opportunity to
deliver a training programme for workers in AM through a European and International
qualification system, similar to existing EWF schemes that are closely aligned with
industry requirements. By doing so, it is expected to increase the uptake of national
diplomas that are recognized, and at the same time, to prepare the AM workforce
with the necessary skills at both European and International levels. The ‘ADMIRE’
(ADMIRE 2017) and ‘CLLAIM’ (CLLAIM 2017) projects that were funded by
the Erasmus + framework, was set up to attain this goal by creating a European
Qualification System for Metal Additive Manufacturing, being the first to create EU
qualification standards for AM Engineers and the latter one for EU AM operators,
designers and inspectors.

E. G. Assunçao (B) · E. R. Silva

European Federation for Welding, Joining and Cutting, Av. Prof Cavaco Silva, 33, TagusPark,
2740-120 Porto Salvo, Portugal
e-mail: egassuncao@ewf.be
E. Pei
Institute of Materials and Manufacturing, Brunel University London, Uxbridge UB8 3PH, UK

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019 211

E. Pei et al. (eds.), Additive Manufacturing—Developments in Training
and Education, https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-76084-1_14
212 E. G. Assunçao et al.

Fig. 1 Barriers of implementing AM (N  900 companies) (Ernst and Young 2016)

2 Demand for Personnel Training in Additive


Education and employment are intrinsically tied to each other, and this statement is
more prevalent in AM; here, there is a lack of qualified personnel, as evident from
the EY 3D Printing report from April 2016, in which the lack of qualified experts
was identified as the second highest barrier on the implementation of AM, and the
first barrier being high costs associated with AM. This is one out of many reports and
studies that have been conducted over the previous years that highlight the paramount
need to fill the gap between the AM market and Vocational and Educational Training
(VET) at a European level. Refer to Fig. 1 (Ernst and Young 2016).
Despite these constraints, the growth of AM technology continues to increase and
the scale of potential applications have become wider, adding onto the pressures of
an unpredictable future workforce. As a consequence, the delivery of timely and fit
for purpose training is a need, as recommended in the Strategic Research Agenda
released in 2014 by the Additive Manufacturing Platform (AM-Platform 2018). The
recommendations include the following:
• Developing training programmes for industry practitioners certified by profes-
sional bodies;
• Catering for events based on specific industrial case studies, technology transfer
support and supply chain assistance;
• Developing AM specific training modules encompassing design, modelling,
processes, materials and applications.

3 Tackling AM Training at a European Level

The European landscape in terms of training and qualification for AM personnel

is fragmented in which small and separates blocks of training are being delivered
across countries in different directions. There is an absence of a comprehensive and
Professional Training of AM at the European Level 213

all-encompassing curricula for education, training and the provision of schemes to

retrain and requalify the existing workforce in AM. The EWF is developing a Euro-
pean harmonized system for VET/Professional Training that would encompass qual-
ifications ranging from an upper secondary level to a Postgraduate degree (Masters)
level. The development of the European harmonized system is done in collaboration
with current European funded projects CLLAIM and ADMIRE. Some of the tools
included in the training are as follows: (i) the European Qualifications Framework
(EQF 2018), which is structured into levels (from 1 to 8) encompassing specific
descriptors for each level, known as Learning Outcomes; (ii) the European Credit
System for Vocational Education and Training (ECVET 2018) and the European
Skills, Competences, Qualifications and Occupations (ESCO 2018). The gaps are
required to be analysed in detail to ensure that the developed European Qualification
answers the industry requirements for each stage of the AM value chain, starting with
the AM Designer and Specialist for the Numerical Modelling and Design and Mate-
rials; followed by the Specialist and Operator for the Processing stage, and finally,
by Inspector for the Non-Destructive Testing and the Testing phases. Initially, to
bridge the gap between job offers and job seekers in the professions related with
AM, it became crucial to identify the skills needs in Europe. To have an overview
on the relevance of technical skills gaps/topics for each professional profile (Oper-
ator, Inspector/Quality Assurance Supervisor, Designer, Supervisor and Engineer)
identified in a market research conducted by EWF.
The technical skills gaps/topics marked in light blue (0–30%) are considered
slightly relevant, whilst the ones in blue (31–75%) are considered relevant and those
in dark blue (76–100%) are considered very relevant. Looking at the top row (‘Oper-
ator’), it is suggested that the topics ‘AM Processes’, ‘Post-Processing’ and ‘Pre-
Processing and Material Handling’ are relevant and ‘Health, Safety and Environment
(HS&E)’ is very relevant for development of the Operator’s professional qualification
standards. Based on those skill needs, the design of a EU sector-specific curricula
which is competence-based would be written according to the expected learning
Outcomes (LOs) of the EQF. The recognition and certification of the respective LOs
establish the formal, non-formal and informal learning pathways so that more flexi-
ble routes to learning are addressed, as well as, improving the entry and progress of
the labour market (European Commission 2014; Flourentzouen 2012). The recogni-
tion of non-formal and informal learning often referred to as ‘Recognition of Prior
Learning’ (RPL). The European harmonized scheme for Recognition of Prior Learn-
ing (RPL) and work-based recognition at the workplace would be designed such that
it could enable lifelong learning and to disclosure flexible pathways/routes for the
learners, especially for mature students. Some of the advantages of prior learning
include giving formal recognition to the knowledge and skills that people already
possess as a route to new employment; increasing the number of people with formal
qualifications; and reducing training time by avoiding repetition of what candidates
already know.
The RPL of both formal and informal learning is also supported by implement-
ing ECVET principles by means of credits. This is carried out to ensure that the
implementation is at a European level and at the same time, national and regional
214 E. G. Assunçao et al.

Fig. 2 Technical skills gaps/topics in metal AM identified by EWF in a market research

implementation through private training, education organizations and also public

organizations. Another important aspect is to facilitate the mobility of workers in the
European labour market, in which the CLLAIM project is contributing to this by ref-
erencing qualifications in EQF, and by setting up a framework for the creation of an
‘International Qualifications’ system for AM. The creation of a competency matrix
for the qualification of levels according to the LOs detailed with the core knowl-
edge, skills and competencies are expected to contribute to the ESCO classification,
allowing the characterization and creation of new occupations and qualifications.
Within AM, some profiles that have a higher priority such as those in Fig. 2 and
the ones mentioned in the European Economic and Social Committee report on AM
include machine operators who are able to deal with the process-specific software
(Fornea and Van Laere 2015), personnel involved in curricula and training in AM
for activities such as engineering design, software, materials processing, materials
supply, post-processing, heat treatment, non-destructive testing and final finishing
(Vallés 2015), and AM professionals and specialists such as design technicians and
manufacturing inspectors (CECIMO 2015).
At the moment, the market is absent of any formal recognized qualification on
metal AM in Europe. The majority of training cover aspects of AM in general and do
not really explore topics in depth. The CLLAIM project, however, is at the forefront
of curricular provision for AM based on the EWF System, which is a European
qualification body supported by a quality assurance system, allowing the qualification
and training process of personnel to be done in a harmonized way across Europe.
The way the harmonization and implementation of the EU AM Qualification System
are achieved pictured in Fig. 3.
The EU recognition is guaranteed by applying the same rules for quality assur-
ance in each country, by overseeing the quality of the courses and making use of the
necessary EU tools. At the same time, national recognition is achieved by engag-
ing relevant AM stakeholders, including national accreditation organizations. For the
implementation and provision of training at local level, the partners shall be approved
beforehand to deliver the AM training courses. The contents of the European AM
System would be maintained up to date, as the local providers of training would
be closely engaged with industry, students and trainees. The new requirements cap-
Professional Training of AM at the European Level 215

Fig. 3 AM qualification system implementation

tured by the local providers across countries would be, then, reflected in the learning
outcomes descriptors. The learning outcomes are structured according to modular
Learning Units, comprising of specific learning descriptors (KSC—knowledge, skills
and competences). Another part will rely on a VET harmonized scheme for assess-
ment and recognition of prior learning/work-based learning recognition within the
scope of AM.

4 Conclusions

The European Skills Panorama (2014) described ‘Europe is a world leader in devel-
oping advanced manufacturing techniques. Advanced manufacturing is the use of
cutting-edge skills or technologies to generate efficiencies and improvements to pro-
duction processes. These techniques include the use of advanced robotics and 3D
printing’. Therefore, one of the biggest challenges in tackling AM skill needs and
shortages is related to the higher speed of technology development when compared
with the speed of education/training provision. To tackle this, a systemic and sound
methodological approach for skills monitoring and a deployment system of educa-
tion and training to be delivered on time, involving all relevant stakeholders shall
include the following:
• Sector Skills Strategy at a European Level by developing and engaging stakehold-
ers covering all sectors, technologies and the entire value chain; supported by a
European Qualification System in AM;
• A forecast methodology for assessing current and future needs to ensure that the
demands of the industry are recorded and addressed;
• A methodology to design and revise professional profiles and developing skills
that will enable upskilling/reskilling of professionals. This is critical to accelerate
the implementation of AM in the industry;
• The creation of business–education–research partnerships to ensure that all key
stakeholders are involved in the identification and creation of necessary skills.
216 E. G. Assunçao et al.

The digitization of the manufacturing sector heralds the beginning of the Fourth
Industrial Revolution. One of the key pillars is the use of AM that will change
qualifications at three levels—manufacturing technologies, control systems and dig-
ital technologies. As trends such as the Internet of Things and connected machines
become pervasive, we need to ensure that our workforce is ready to embrace this
challenge and to drive the industry forward by having reskilled, retrained and newly
qualified personnel. Also, to be taken into account is the changing nature of work
and the emergence of new roles that have the potential to benefit existing workers by
enabling them to work beyond what would be expected given the physical require-
ments of the job such as through Artificial Intelligence and Robotic Assistance.
Companies, universities, training institutions and governments must work together
to address these new changes by aligning formal and informal qualifications, boosting
a modular delivery and embracing lifelong learning in all of its dimensions.

Acknowledgements The ADMIRE project has been funded with support from the European Com-
mission. This publication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held
responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein. No. 575938-
EPP-1-UK-EPPKA2-KA. The CLLAIM project has been funded with support from the European
Commission. This publication reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot
be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein. No.


ADMIRE. (2017). European master degree in metal additive manufacturing (A.M.). Retrieved
March 27, 2018, from http://admireproject.eu.
AM Platform. (2018). European technology platform in additive manufacturing. Retrieved March
27, 2018, from http://www.rm-platform.com.
CECIMO. (2015). Additive manufacturing on its way to industrialisation—A game changer?
Retrieved March 27, 2018, from http://www.cecimo.eu/site/fileadmin/Magazine/CECIMO_
CLLAIM. (2017) European AM qualification body and European harmonized qualification system.
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ECVET. (2018). The European credit system for vocational education and training (ECVET).
Retrieved March 27, 2018, from https://ec.europa.eu/education/policy/vocational-policy/ecvet_
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Ernst & Young. (2016). EY GLobal 3D Printing Report, 2016. Retrieved March 27, 2018, from ey-
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Vallés, J. L. (2015). Additive manufacturing in FP7 and horizon 2020—Report from the EC work-
shop on additive manufacturing held on 18 June 2014. Retrieved March 27, 2018, from http://

Eurico Assunçao is the Deputy Director at EWF, trained as a Mechanical Engineer specialized in
materials joining with a passion for welding and Additive Manufacturing. He specializes in laser
processing methods for the industry.

Elvira Raquel Silva is an experienced Project Manager working at EWF. She completed her
degree from Instituto de Educação, Universidade do Minho (Portugal).

Dr. Eujin Pei is the Director for the Product Design and Product Design Engineering programmes
at Brunel University London. His research focuses on Design for Additive Manufacturing and
Applications for Functionally Graded Additive Manufacturing. He is the Convenor for the Inter-
national Standards Organisation Technical Committee ISO/TC261/WG4 and Chairs’ meetings
related to Data Transfer and Design for Additive Manufacture. He is Chair for the British Stan-
dards Institute BSI/AMT/8 for Additive Manufacturing. Eujin is also a Chartered Engineer (CEng)
and a Chartered Technological Product Designer (CTPD). He is active in various industry and
knowledge transfer projects in the UK and across EU. Eujin is also the Managing Editor for the
Progress in Additive Manufacturing Journal published by SpringerNature.

External Resources: The European Federation for Welding, Joining and Cutting (EWF) manages
the International System for Training, Qualification and Certification of both welding personnel
and companies using welding, in Quality, Environment, Health and Safety. EWF was founded in
1992 and has 28 European member countries and 2 Observer Members from outside Europe, rep-
resented by their national welding societies. https://www.ewf.be.
Future Challenges in Functionally
Graded Additive Manufacturing

Eujin Pei and Giselle Hsiang Loh

1 Introduction

Additive Manufacturing (AM) has seen rapid growth since the 1980s and today’s
systems are in some cases, capable of multi-material printing and serving applica-
tions that span across several industries. Taking a step further, Functionally Graded
Additive Manufacturing (FGAM) is a layer-by-layer fabrication technique that
involves gradationally varying the material organisation within a component to meet
an intended function. It is a material-centric fabrication process that establishes a
radical shift from contour modelling to performance modelling, enabling the control
of the density and directionality of material deposition; or to combine various mate-
rials together to produce a single and seamless monolithic structure (Oxman 2011).
The functionality of the component can be achieved through material organisation
and allocation at a microstructure level to meet the intended performance. The
distribution of the material for FGAM parts can be characterised into three types
(Momeni et al. 2017)—(a) variable densification within a homogeneous composi-
tion; (b) heterogeneous composition through simultaneously combining two or more
materials by gradual transition and (c) using a combination of variable densification
within a heterogeneous composition (Fig. 1). Homogeneous FGAM compositions
strategically modulate the spatial microstructure or morphology of lattice structures
from a bulk material into a porous core, resulting in an excellent strength-to-weight
ratio that enables structures to be light yet still strong. Heterogeneous FGAM
compositions seek to improve the interfacial bond between two or more dissimilar
or incompatible materials by having a smooth microstructural transition or gradient
across the substances to avoid delamination or cracks caused by surface tension.
Heterogeneous FGAM can provide site-specific properties tailored or strategically
located around those parts (Vaezi et al. 2013).

E. Pei (B) · G. H. Loh

Institute of Materials and Manufacturing, Brunel University London, Uxbridge UB8 3PH, UK
e-mail: eujin.pei@brunel.ac.uk

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019 219

E. Pei et al. (eds.), Additive Manufacturing—Developments in Training
and Education, https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-76084-1_15
220 E. Pei and G. H. Loh

Fig. 1 Combination of density and compositional gradation within a heterogeneous material

Fig. 2 Types of gradients

(Muller et al. 2012; 2014)

Design for FGAM (DFGAM) requires a multidisciplinary understanding about

the functional performance of the component and to be able to correctly identify
the suitable materials, selecting appropriate AM manufacturing methods for produc-
tion, specifying the type of material distribution, the dimension of the gradient, etc.
FGAM components have a high priority towards the description material properties.
The control and assignment of the material gradient across individual voxel of the
component are significant as it specifies the overall behaviour and functionality of the
component. The gradient classification can be uniform or arranged through special
patterns such as those illustrated in Fig. 2 (Muller et al. 2012; 2014).

2 Fabrication Processes and Data Exchange Formats for

Functionally Graded Additive Manufacturing

A number of AM technologies are capable of producing FGAM parts including mate-

rial extrusion, directed energy deposition, powder bed fusion, sheet lamination and
material jetting. Material extrusion processes utilise metals, thermoplastics, com-
posites or ceramic material in a filament or paste form that are usually dispensed
through a nozzle or an extruder. For powder bed fusion, feedstock material such as
polyamides, atomized metal powder or ceramic powder is deposited and selectively
fused using a heat source from a high-powered laser. Directed energy deposition uses
Future Challenges in Functionally Graded Additive Manufacturing 221

laser energy that is absorbed by the metal powder causing the material to melt. For
sheet lamination, layers of material such as plastic film, metallic sheet or ceramic
tape are bonded together, and then selectively cut in each layer to create a three-
dimensional part. Last, material jetting involves the curing of photopolymers where
droplets of material are selectively deposited on top of each other layer by layer.
While other emerging AM strategies may be suitable for producing FGAM parts,
it is also important to consider the type of data exchange format that is machine-
readable to transfer the information describing the component such as geometry,
material and colour.
The most common data exchange format used by AM systems is usually a triangu-
lar facet model represented by polygonal meshes in the form of an STL file format.
However, the STL format only contains the surface geometry description without
any material and property information. As a result, other emerging data formats have
been proposed, @@including Additive Manufacturing Format (AMF), Fabricatable
Voxel (FAV), Simple Voxels (SVX) and 3D Manufacturing Format (3MF) that may
be potentially suitable for the production of FGAM parts to describe the geometry,
material and micro-scale physical properties. AMF is an XML-based format capable
of storing colour, materials, lattices, duplicates and constellations of the volumes
that make up the object and it provides a suitable platform for FGAM including the
material specification for mixed and graded materials as well as its porosity. The FAV
format uses voxels to represent digital information with attributed values, including
colour and material information. Similarly, SVX is a voxel transmittal format com-
posed of a series of image slices and a manifest.xml file that contains information
on material allocation, density, RGB colour or other customised data. Last, 3MF is
a relatively newer XML-based open format that has been developed and published
by the 3MF Consortium to allow CAD applications to send 3D models to the AM
The FGAM process from design to manufacturing has been described by Cotteleer
and Joyce (2014) and Muller et al. (2012) where the first step is the design stage in
which the mechanical function of the part is defined by specifying the geometry, scale
and other features. In some instances, the design phase includes the optimisation of
the lattice or cellular structures using Topology Optimization or Finite Element Anal-
ysis (FEA) to produce an enhanced computer-generated model (Zhang et al. 2016).
Next, material data that concerns the material composition and the functional char-
acteristics of the part are considered. Representing the material together with the
geometric information is an important aspect of FGAM. Digital simulation is often
used to represent the material and to formulate a matching epistemology for the
material selection, gradient discretization, volume of support and other calculations
to minimise errors such as residual stress, etc. (Grigoriadis 2016). At this stage, an
appropriate data exchange format such as AMF may be used to save the digital data
before a manufacturing strategy is determined where mathematical data is used to
define the slicing orientation together with appropriate process control parameters
(Muller et al. 2012). Very often, Numerical Control (NC) programming is used to
generate the build paths and process parameters using, but not limited to G-code
language (Muller et al. 2014; Kulkarni et al. 2000). The G-code file is sent to the
222 E. Pei and G. H. Loh

AM machine for the production sequence to commence (Muller et al. 2012). After
the production is complete, the post-processing stage ensures that quality aspects
such as the desired surface characteristics, part accuracy, aesthetics and mechanical
properties of the FGAM component meet its functional and geometrical specifica-
tions. Next, the use of conventional AM post-processing methods may be used, such
as tumbling, machining, hand-finishing, micromachining, chemical post-processing
and electroplating (Khumbar and Mullay 2016). Last, quality assurance and part
validation processes are carried out, including metrology, non-destructive testing,
stress analysis or microscopic imaging to validate the final product and resultant part

3 Challenges for the Production of Functionally Graded

Additive Manufactured Parts

Several scholars have highlighted that insufficient understanding and application of

Design for AM (DfAM) has limited the overall penetration of AM in industry, hold-
ing back the use of AM for the production of end-use parts and preventing designers
from fully benefitting from this technology (Thompson et al. 2016; Doubrovski et al.
2012; Gausemeier et al. 2011). There have been a number of AM design guides
published by manufacturers to outline process and machine-related constraints such
as design guides from Materialise (2015) related to a variety of materials, guides for
DMLS, FDM and laser sintering from Stratasys (2018), guides for feature-specific
and material-specific information from Shapeways (2016) and application-specific
considerations for AM from 3D Systems Inc. (2015). Leist and Zhou (2016) proposed
a Design for 4D Printing (DF4DP) as an application-driven process that incorporates
a product development pathway to achieve the goals set by the initial requirements.
It involves a CAD/CAM/CAE process based on material and design requirements
from a manufacturing perspective using a compatibility map that determines the opti-
mal material combination for task-specific applications to achieve the best results.
However, within the scope of FGAM, there are very few established guidelines to
support designers, engineers or manufacturers. Design rules and methods of know-
ing the required mix of properties, the arrangement of phases and compatibility of
materials need to be established to avoid undesirable results. There is a need to
have greater guidance on the use of novel substances such as adaptive metamateri-
als that can adjust the stiffness based on changes in geometry while keeping their
mass constant (Bodaghi et al. 2016). Knowledge of an FGAM ‘processing-structure-
property’ relationship can be gained through shared databases or as a catalogue of
material performance (Mahamood et al. 2012). Most commercial AM systems still
operate predominantly on a basic geometric description and use single materials.
As FGAM parts may contain complex internal structures and require precise distri-
bution of materials at a microstructure level, the mode of delivery and accuracy of
deposition, blending and switching materials have to improve (Vaezi et al. 2013). It
Future Challenges in Functionally Graded Additive Manufacturing 223

is crucial to understand the differences between the predicted and actual components
resulting from FGAM as the distribution of chemical components and its material
properties of the manufactured component may deviate from the actual production
material due to the variability in the interaction of different materials at different
operating conditions (Zhang et al. 2016). As newer functional materials of complex
compositions emerge, significant advances have to be realised to meet the micro-
and nano-fabrication technologies (Leist and Zhou 2016). However, there are sev-
eral limitations to current AM processes. For example, printers with inkjet nozzles
can only print materials with certain viscosities and at specific curing temperatures
(Zhou et al. 2013). FGAM offers the opportunity to create geometries such as new
complex features, tailored cells and gradient structures. Therefore, precise tailor-
ing of ‘state-of-the-art’ materials to perform functions as intended by programmable
design in complex architectures is one of the greatest challenges for production (Leist
and Zhou 2016). Reliability of FGAM parts is another important factor and it can be
achieved through continuous in situ monitoring during the build process to enable
more predictable outcomes when dealing with complex distribution of materials (Bir-
man and Byrd 2007). Future studies should also focus on the improvement of the
lifespan of produced parts. Material characterization is a key challenge for FGAM
processes as a weak understanding of operational variables may result in the part
quality and surface finishing standard varying differently between batches or type
of machines (Tofial et al. 2017). When generating graded materials, the changing
properties brought about by modifications to the microstructure have to be carefully
measured and quantified. A framework is needed to optimise the material gradient
and the arrangement of the transition phases or to provide recommendations for mix-
ing materials with variable and non-uniform properties (Tamas-Williams and Todd
2016). As our understanding of modelling and selection of materials for FGAM is
still limited, it is difficult for designers or engineers without a background in material
science or chemistry to fully utilise the potential of FGAM. Very few commercial
software exists to simulate the design of the gradient such as Autodesk Monolith,
which is a voxel-based modelling engine for multi-material AM or using the Grab-
CAD Voxel Print programme from Stratasys. The design of FGAM parts would
require an entirely new approach of Computer-Aided-Engineering (CAE) that can
specify, model and manage huge amounts of complex material information. Current
literature advocates a greater utilisation of mathematics to design the material distri-
bution and structure to achieve the desired change in shape, property or functionality.
New design programs and software need to be developed in order to embed and rep-
resent information about the materials to make the construction and component more
accurate (Leist and Zhou 2016). Theoretical and numerical models are also needed
to establish the connections between the material elements (Momeni et al. 2017).
In addition, completely new approaches to slicing, analysing and FGAM fabrication
are needed to precisely control the density, directionality and allocation of material
substances throughout the model (Duann 2014).
224 E. Pei and G. H. Loh

4 Future Directions for Functionally Graded Additive


In line with Huang et al. (2015), taking full advantage of AM will require educating
the current workforce, recruiting a new generation of students, developing proper
design tools and implementing appropriate changes in long-standing procedures,
including verification and validation. The industry still does not have a comprehen-
sive ‘materials-product-manufacturing’ guidelines and standards for best practices
to fully exploit and enable the true potential of FGAM on a commercial or economic
scale. A greater knowledge and understanding would help reduce the number of trial-
and-error experiments. As this technology matures, a multidisciplinary approach is
needed to train the next generation of AM experts in the field. In this section, a list
of recommendations for future directions for FGAM have been compiled using the
following two main sources of information: (1) the ‘Standardization Roadmap for
Additive Manufacturing’ from America Makes and ANSI Additive Manufacturing
Standardization Collaborative (AMSC) that was established in 2016 to coordinate
and accelerate the development of industry-wide AM standards and specifications
according to stakeholder needs, assessing gaps and making recommendations for
priority areas for additional standardisation or research and (2) the ‘Additive Manu-
facturing Roadmap: Gaps and Actions on Market Driven Value Chains’ from the
framework of a European-funded FoFAM project Industrial and Regional Valoriza-
tion of Factories of the Future Additive Manufacturing in which the roadmap offers
a strategy for building fundamental knowledge and actions necessary to accelerate
the design, application and implementation of AM. Although the recommendations
from both documents represent today’s state of AM, some aspects can still be referred
and are relevant to the context of FGAM.
• Design Guidelines for Functionally Graded Additive Manufacturing
Guidelines are needed to support designers, engineers and manufacturers to highlight
the process capabilities, limitations and requirements for FGAM. Currently within
ASTM F42 and ISO TC261, the design guideline for ‘Additive Manufacturing—De-
sign—Part 1: Standard Guideline for Laser-based powder bed fusion of metals’
(ISO/ASTM DIS 52911-1:2017); ‘Additive Manufacturing—Design—Part 2: Stan-
dard Guideline for Laser-based powder bed fusion of polymers’ (ISO/ASTM DIS
52911-2:2017); and ‘Additive Manufacturing—Design—Part 3: Standard Guideline
for Electron-based powder bed fusion of metals’ (ISO/ASTM NP 52911-3) are being
developed. FGAM or other AM processes still do not have specifications under
development, although the Joint ISO/TC261-ASTM F42 Group JG67 is working
on the design of Functionally Graded Additive Manufactured parts to produce an
ISO/ASTM NP TR 52912 technical report.
• Computer-Aided Simulation for Functionally Graded Additive Manufactur-
AM simulation tools are an important aspect of the FGAM process to enable stake-
holders to understand and mitigate manufacturing issues such as process dependent
Future Challenges in Functionally Graded Additive Manufacturing 225

deformation and resulting material behaviour. While a few simulation tools are avail-
able, a standard for an FGAM benchmark for parts to validate the simulation would
benefit end users. Topology optimization methodologies should be included during
the design phase to move from feature-based design to performance-based design.
Holistic modelling approaches for multi-physics, multiscale modelling are needed
to predict the graded microstructures to measure and account for strength, fatigue
and service life of FGAM parts.
• Characterisation and Specification of Functionally Graded Additive Manu-
Standard methods of specifying FGAM parts to meet the expected performance cur-
rently does not exist. Characterization of FGAM parts requires an understanding of
the composition, structure and properties using analytical techniques through spec-
troscopic, microscopic and macroscopic means. New test methods may be needed
to fully understand the chemical composition, physical morphology, microstructure,
mechanical, thermal and other properties relevant for FGAM parts.
• Materials for Functionally Graded Additive Manufacturing
Functionally graded materials have a variable composition or structure to achieve
properties such as stiffness, density, thermal conductivity, etc. Dedicated topics on
materials and chemistry for developing new FGAM materials are needed, and shared
databases should be established to provide a catalogue of materials and their perfor-
mance, including the composition, functions and applications to assist stakeholders
to select the ideal substance and the composition based on functional, topological and
geometrical requirements. It is also important to establish test methods to validate
the quality of raw materials (feedstock) for before manufacturing.
• Geometrical Referencing for Functionally Graded Additive Manufacturing
New requirements are needed to specify the data, assign coordinate systems, part
orientation, support material and build location. ASTM F42 has developed an exper-
imental protocol using a geometry characterization (WK55297) for standard AM pro-
cesses but not for FGAM. Internal and complex features such as meshes and lattices
will require more specialised methods of dimensional analysis, geometric dimension-
ing and tolerance for FGAM. Conventional coordinate measuring machines (CMM)
may not be applicable and other forms of metrology such as ultrasonic methods will
be required.
• New Machine Concepts for Functionally Graded Additive Manufacturing
New methods of manufacturing for FGAM should be developed to enable the use
of multi-material and graded materials. There is a need to optimise the tool paths
and deposition to precisely control the material structure and minimise build imper-
fections or distortion. The manufacturing systems will need to be compatible with
FGAM feedstock materials.
226 E. Pei and G. H. Loh

• In-Process Monitoring for Functionally Graded Additive Manufacturing

Standardised models or documentation are needed for in-process monitoring and
analytics for the production of FGAM parts. Process monitoring data should capture
manufacturing imperfections and errors that occur during the build sequence. The
information will help operators minimise downstream defects and increase repro-
ducibility and process reliability.
• Post-Processing of Functionally Graded Additive Manufactured Parts
As FGAM parts are produced in a non-conventional way, post-processing methods
should be considered in which they will not alter the microstructures of FGAM parts.
Conventional approaches of using heat treatment or the use of chemicals may apply
to standard AM components but may not be suitable for FGAM parts. In addition,
new approaches of recycling the feedstock material also need to be developed to
improve production and resource efficiencies.
• Verification and Validation of Functionally Graded Additive Manufactured
Quality management standards can be used to ensure that FGAM components meet
the intended structural integrity or durability. It is necessary to investigate the con-
sequence of defects and identify critical aspects that could lead to premature part
failure. This may include the provision of test guidelines for structural, thermal,
physical and chemical performance; assessing the variations in material properties
and microstructure and how the type of post-processing may affect the integrity of
the FGAM part. Established methods to certify FGAM parts should be developed to
encourage mainstream adoption.

5 Conclusion

Functionally Graded Additive Manufacturing (FGAM) is an emerging technology

that offers a huge potential for new industrial applications. However, we are cur-
rently constrained by a lack of comprehensive ‘materials-product-manufacturing’
knowledge and guidelines and standards for best practices still do not exist. This
chapter provides an overview of the state-of-the-art understanding of this technol-
ogy and its current limitations. Recommendations for future directions including
further research on design, manufacturing and validation guidelines are needed to
encourage mainstream adoption of FGAM technologies.
Future Challenges in Functionally Graded Additive Manufacturing 227


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Dr. Eujin Pei is the Director for the Product Design and Product Design Engineering programmes
at Brunel University London. His research focuses on Design for Additive Manufacturing and
Applications for Functionally Graded Additive Manufacturing. He is the Convenor for the Inter-
national Standards Organisation Technical Committee ISO/TC261/WG4 and Chairs’ meetings
related to Data Transfer and Design for Additive Manufacture. He is Chair for the British Stan-
dards Institute BSI/AMT/8 for Additive Manufacturing. Eujin is also a Chartered Engineer (CEng)
and a Chartered Technological Product Designer (CTPD). He is active in various industry and
knowledge transfer projects in the UK and across EU. Eujin is also the Managing Editor for the
Progress in Additive Manufacturing Journal published by SpringerNature.

Giselle Loh is a Teaching Assistant and a Doctoral candidate at Brunel University London. Her
work focuses on the use of Functionally Graded Additive Manufacturing and 4D Printing for
Smart Textiles. She has a background in Product Design with a Master’s degree in Fashion and

External Resources: British Standards Institute is the National Standards Body of the United King-
dom, produces technical standards on a wide range of products and services, supplies certification
and standards-related services to businesses. http://www.bsigroup.com.
British Standards Institute AMT/8 is responsible for standards to support innovative
advancements within additive manufacturing processes relevant to UK industry. https://
Brunel University London Institute of Materials and Manufacturing aims to improve the per-
formance of materials and structures, including their design, manufacturing, integrity and use,
through a combined theoretical approach. https://www.brunel.ac.uk/research/Institutes/Institute-
Useful Information

ISO/TC261 is the International Standardization body in the field of Additive

Manufacturing (AM) concerning their processes, terms and definitions, process
chains (Hard- and Software), test procedures, quality parameters, supply agree-
ments and all kinds of fundamentals.

ASTM Technical Committee F42 on Additive manufacturing was formed in 2009.

F42 members meet twice a year, usually in January and July, with about 100
members attending 2 days of technical meetings. The Committee, with a current
membership of approximately 400, has six technical subcommittees; all standards
developed by F42 are published in the Annual Book of ASTM Standards, Volume

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019 229

E. Pei et al. (eds.), Additive Manufacturing—Developments in Training
and Education, https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-319-76084-1