Swiss and S.Korean partners sought for a bilateral project submission.      South Korea iconSwitzerland icon

Partner Search:
Title: Integration of Additive Manufacturing Technologies as Application for Serial Production (Rapid Manufacturing) in Global Production Networks

Detailed Description:
The proposed research project will be in the domain of global production networks (GPN) managing different sites worldwide. More precise, we want to have a closer look on the strategy and configuration of GPNs under the consideration of additive manufacturing as a new production technology for serial production purposes. The application of additive manufacturing technologies for serial production, also called rapid manufacturing or direct manufacturing, has huge benefits for manufacturing companies. Some major benefits for the production network are the production of integrated functions and the drastic decrease of assembly steps which reduces supply chain issues and reduces manual labour. For example, GE was able to reduce the assembly of the Catalyst turboprop engine from 855 separate parts to only 12. Another major advantage is the possibility to switch production volumes more flexible, because less specialized production processes are needed. Additionally, the supply chain risk can be reduced using rapid manufacturing. This becomes especially relevant considering that 1/3 of today´s global trade is intra company trade.
Putting these benefits into a bigger picture, rapid manufacturing can strengthen the resistance of the production network by overcoming unpredictable risks such as trade ware, pandemics and environmental concerns.
However, as with all Industry 4.0 and digitalization technologies companies struggle to implement them in a coordinated and optimal approach. This project aims to elaborate and evaluate potential application areas for rapid manufacturing within the production network. Our aim is to provide you with a global AM strategy including the analysis of intra-company material flow, customer flexibility demand, allocation of AM technologies and a capability building approach. The Innosuisse (Swiss Innovation Agency) and KIAT (Korean Institute for Advancement of Technology) project is going to be a joint project consisting of Swiss and Korean industrial companies and an AM specialist vendor.

The project will consist of four different work packages.
In a first step the Swiss university will develop a strategic framework to include rapid manufacturing within the GPN. Additionally, we will consider findings from previous projects to enrich current approaches for the management of GPN.
The second step is the analysis of the implementation partners’ current production network using our renown approach and expertise in optimizing GPNs to develop a manufacturing strategy. Here we want to identify critical products and spots in the network, where the usage of rapid manufacturing can increase the resilience. The aim is the definition of different potential scenarios for the design of the network.
The third step involves a simulation of the different scenarios in order to determine at which location and with which products rapid manufacturing can contribute best to the resilience of the GPN. The results of this step will be developed using the specific knowledge and expertise of rapid manufacturing from the commercialization partner.
In a fourth step the initial framework will be revised with the findings from the simulation and an implementation roadmap will be defined.

This project should benefit research and industry. As a result, we are open for feedback from companies and their ideas how the project could be enriched. Please let us know your thoughts.

Type and role of partner sought:

The specific area of activity of the partner and the tasks to be performed by the partner sought:

1. Switzerland:
We are looking for commercialization and implementation partners.
The commercialization partner should offer consultancy for companies who want to implement rapid manufacturing. Optimally the commercialization partner has a profound knowledge regarding additive manufacturing machines and is, if possible, an additive machine manufacturer. The commercialization partner will profit from the results of the project and can use the findings to find better suited solutions for their customers.

Additionally, we are looking for implementation companies with a global production network (GPN), who are eager to profit from the potential benefits rapid manufacturing has to offer. We want to jointly develop a strategy for the company to implement rapid manufacturing in the best way possible within the GPN. The company can be at an early stage only with plans to consider rapid manufacturing or be at a later stage with additive manufacturing machines already installed.

2. South Korea:
For the South Korean part, we are looking for an implementation partner with the same preconditions as the Swiss implementation partner.

Comment: We are looking for two different types of partners. For the implementation partner it doesn´t necessarily depend on the number of employees. Important is the fact to have several production sites worldwide and the will to implement additive manufacturing technologies for serial production purposes!
However, for the commercialization partner the number of employees is irrelevant as long as they have expertise and a consultancy branch for additive manufacturing.

Contact person in Switzerland:
Kathrin Rüegg, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
+41 (0)58 461 89 85