Issue: May 2017


GKN Sinter Metals launches ecommerce platform for additive manufacturing



GKN Sinter Metals takes the next big stride in digitization with the launch of its new ecommerce platform InstAMetal

by Jon Knox

GKN Sinter Metals takes the next big stride in digitization with the launch of its new ecommerce platform. InstAMetal is a revolutionary quoting and design experience for Metal Additive Manufacturing (AM) that brings the speed and simplicity of online ordering to engineering prototypes. It will enable customers to order prototypes made by Metal AM, also known as 3D printing, easily and efficiently online simply by uploading a 3D model. Orders can be placed 24/7 anywhere around the globe and generate instant quoting. GKN is launching the beta testing phase of InstAMetal at the RAPID + TCT taking place from May 8-11 in Pittsburgh, PA, USA.

As the world’s largest producer of precision powder metal products, GKN Sinter Metals is well positioned to accelerate the industrialization of Metal AM products by enabling their order at the push of a button. This offers unlimited prototyping capabilities for the development cycles of the automotive sector. Dr. Peter Oberparleiter, CEO GKN Powder Metallurgy, explains: “Our aim is to make the ordering of metal AM prototypes as easy as placing an order on Amazon for our customers. The ordering process is simple and intuitive. Customers upload 3D models of a product directly to the new online platform, so we make AM accessible for everybody!”

The order process offers the following significant advantages:

  • Support: Various tools will be introduced to help the customer with a feasibility analysis of the parts to be produced.
  • Availability: The availability of contact persons or different time zones is no longer an issue. The order process can be initiated around the clock from anywhere in the world. 
  • Instant quoting: Customers get their quote immediately at the push of a button. This simplifies the calculation for more unusual prototypes and makes production easier to plan.
  • Speed: Fast completion of a feasibility analysis and immediate price information significantly reduce the order and process times.

Following the positive feedback from visitors to the AMUG in Chicago where InstAMetal was debuted in March, GKN is now inviting customers to register as beta testers. After testing the platform at their workplace, their input and feedback will help the company as it finalizes and optimizes InstAMetal for its market launch in the fall. GKN developed the platform software together with 3YOURMIND, a leader in innovative 3D printing software solutions. The partners will launch the beta testing phase of InstAMetal together at the RAPID + TCT, North America’s preeminent event for discovery, innovation and networking in 3D manufacturing. 3YOURMIND develops industrial 3D printing software platforms for Industry 4.0 workflows. Their on-demand production marketplace enables GKN to provide a streamlined online portal for its global customer base. Their automated tools ensure that all 3D components are optimized for the specific GKN metal processes. GKN Powder Metallurgy and GKN Aerospace share an exhibition space to present their latest advancements at the trade show in Pittsburgh.

With its new platform, GKN Sinter Metals is also reaching new customers, making Metal AM more accessible and further advancing its industrialization. Personal, individual consulting with customers will remain a core competency of the company, emphasizes Dr. Oberparleiter: “We want to use the time we gain through the more efficient ordering process and the shorter time spans to interact with our customers – for dialogue, developing joint strategies and also for individual consulting on complex topics. The time is much better invested in these areas for both our customers and GKN.”

Play a part in advancing this revolutionary Metal AM online ordering experience and register as a GKN Sinter Metals InstAMetal platform beta tester here: www.instametal.info.

About GKN Sinter Metals

GKN Sinter Metals is the world’s largest producer of precision powder metal products. With a focus on superior delivery, quality and total solutions, the company offers extensive technical expertise in design, testing and various process technologies. GKN Sinter Metals offers a full range of complex shapes and high strength products for automotive, industrial and consumer markets worldwide. The company’s global footprint spans more than 13 countries across five continents. GKN Sinter Metals is in close proximity to its customers with more than 30 global locations and more than 6,000 employees.

About GKN plc

GKN plc is a global engineering group. It has four divisions; GKN Aerospace, GKN Driveline, GKN Powder Metallurgy and GKN Land Systems, which operate in the aerospace, automotive and land systems markets. Over 56,100 people work in GKN companies and joint ventures in more than 30 countries. GKN is listed on the London Stock Exchange (LSE: GKN) and recorded sales of £7.7 billion in the year to 31 December 2015. 

 

 



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