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UPFRONT A Letter from the Editor


Setting a course correction for promising AM industry


N


Scrypt CEO Kenneth Church, one of the sources quoted in this issue’s cover story, spoke


excitedly with us about growing 3D printing from an industry that records sales of $3 billion a year to one that tallies 10s or 100s of billions a year. One way to get there is to move in on the printed circuit board field: Ad- ditive manufacturing (AM) can disrupt the printed circuit boards market be- cause AM produces less waste—which translates to competitiveness through cost savings. But AM faces obstacles against which future competition from the circuit board industry pales. The technological challenges with which AM is grappling today have ushered in a disturbing new paradigm. “For the first time in history, manu- facturing is more advanced than design,”


Smart Manufacturing Editorial Staff


EDITOR IN CHIEF Brett Brune


313-425-3253 bbrune@sme.org


Advanced Manufacturing Media Editorial Staff


EDITOR IN CHIEF


James D. Sawyer 313-425-3053


jsawyer@sme.org SENIOR EDITOR


Bill Koenig 313-425-3058


bkoenig@sme.org SENIOR EDITOR


James A. Lorincz 440-779-6946


jlorincz@sme.org


Columbia University Prof. Hod Lipson declares in this issue. “With AM, you can make almost any shape you can imag- ine. The challenge is the software design tools are not keeping pace. We can build anything but we can’t design it.” To address that unacceptable truth,


we rounded up many of those dem- onstrating the sort of audacious and monumental thinking that is needed to set a successful course correction. Four of these visionaries appear on


the cover of this issue: In addition to Church and Lipson, this august group includes Met-L-Flo President Carl Dekker and Adrian Lannin, a Microsoft group program manager. The experts whom we consulted


pointed to file format and design tool woes, providing details, perspectives and innovations we trust will help end AM’s design doldrums.


SENIOR EDITOR


Patrick Waurzyniak 313-425-3256


pwaurzyniak@sme.org DIGITAL EDITOR


Katelyn DaMour 313-425-3251


ASSISTANT EDITOR


Darlene M. Pietryka 313-425-3255


Smart Manufacturing is designed and produced by the SME Creative Department


Business Staff VICE PRESIDENT


ADVANCED MANUFACTURING MEDIA Dave O’Neil


313-425-3260 doneil@sme.org


PUBLISHER


Greg Sheremet 313-425-3261


gsheremet@sme.org PRODUCTION MANAGER


Kim Stebbins 313-425-3257


kstebbins@sme.org AUDIENCE MANAGER


Mary Venianakis 905-755-0783


mvenianakis@sme.org DIGITAL PRODUCT MANAGER


Marcus Abdullah 313-425-3262


mabdullah@sme.org ADDRESS CHANGES


Cheryl Matulonis 313-425-3264


cmatulonis@sme.org


Although reasonable efforts are taken to ensure the accuracy of its published material, SME is not responsible for statements published in this magazine. Readers are advised that SME shall not be liable to any person or company for losses or damages incurred as a result of accepting any invitation or offer contained in any advertisement published in Smart Manufacturing. Copyright © 2016 by SME. Photocopy information: Users registered with the Copyright Clearance Center, 21 Congress St., Salem, MA 01970, can purchase copies at $2.00 each referring to serial fee code 0361-0853/88/$2.00. All other photocopying without the permission of SME is


prohibited. Reprint information: For tearsheets, reprints, and bulk orders, write the Production Manager, kstebbins@sme.org. Available on microfilm/microfiche from University Microfilms International, 300 N. Zeeb Rd., Ann Arbor, MI 48106. Canada Post Publication Mail Sales Agreement No. 1436813


2


Solving AM’s troubles will open the door to billions of dollars in market growth and pave the way to further innovation. To get a foothold in printed


circuit boards, AM firms would need to master electrically functional structures. But who could resist taking a bite out of that $70 billion- a-year market? Then there’s personalized demand.


“There is $2.3 trillion in personalized medicine alone,” Church said. Also beckoning: High-volume cus-


tomization and new inventions. Church, for one, sees new per-


sonalized products and devices on the horizon—shoes, eyeglasses and computers.


“Fitbit is going to look like child’s


play compared to what’s coming,” he said.


Brett Brune Editor in Chief


Fall 2016


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