Singapore-based aircraft MRO provider SIA Engineering Company Limited (SIAEC) has signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with 3D-printing and additive-manufacturing specialist Stratasys Ltd. to establish a strategic partnership specialising in additive manufacturing.
The new partnership aims to accelerate adoption of 3D-printed production parts for commercial aviation, by combining Stratasys' expertise in additive manufacturing—which includes experience in aerospace-industry additive manufacturing—with SIAEC's MRO services to provide airline customers with parts for scheduled maintenance and for on-demand requirements.
Under the MOU, the parties will look at creating a joint venture, which when established would be majority-owned by SIAEC.
The two companies intend to establish an Additive Manufacturing Service Centre in Singapore, to provide design, engineering, certification support and parts production for SIAEC's network of partners and customers.
Stratasys—which boasts two corporate headquarters, one in Eden Prairie, Minnesota and the other in Rehovot in Israel—will provide the required additive-manufacturing industry expertise and drive the development of aerospace applications, together with SIAEC.
“This strategic partnership marks an important milestone for additive manufacturing in the aviation industry,” says Ilan Levin, CEO of Stratasys.
“As we have shown with our existing relationships with leading aerospace manufacturers, including Airbus and Boeing, we are committed to advancing the use of additive manufacturing for high-requirement aerospace applications,” adds Levin. “By working closely with SIAEC, we are extending that focus to solve the unique challenges of the MRO segment and further drive adoption.”
Png Kim Chiang, chief executive officer of SIAEC, comments, “We are delighted to partner with Stratasys, a leader in its field, in our pursuit of innovation and the adoption of the latest additive manufacturing technologies. Our collaboration will strengthen SIAEC's comprehensive suite of MRO solutions and enhance our support to customers, especially in the region.”
SIAEC has a client base of more than 80 international carriers and aerospace-equipment manufacturers. It provides line-maintenance services at 36 airports in a number of countries, as well as airframe and component services for various widely used commercial-aircraft types.
In addition to MRO services, SIAEC also offers a comprehensive and integrated suite of fleet-management services.
To date, SIAEC also has established 24 joint ventures with original equipment manufacturers and strategic partners in Singapore, Australia, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Philippines, Taiwan, the USA and Vietnam, to increase the depth and breadth of its service offerings.
SIAEC has approvals from 27 national aviation regulatory authorities to provide MRO services for commercial aircraft.
Stratasys Ltd. has been in business for more than 25 years and today it employs more than 2,700 people and holds 1,200 granted or pending additive-manufacturing patents. Stratasys has received more than 30 technology and leadership awards.
The company's subsidiaries include MakerBot and Solidscape. Stratasys’ product line includes 3D printers for prototyping and production; a wide range of 3D-printing materials; and parts-on-demand manufacturing, through Stratasys Direct Manufacturing.
Additionally, Stratasys offers strategic consulting and professional services.
Its additive-manufacturing network resources include the Thingiverse and GrabCAD communities, which make available more than 2 million 3D-printable files for free designs.