Press release Rapid.Tech 3D 2024

20th Rapid.Tech 3D: an opening packed with debuts

The 20th edition of Rapid.Tech 3D kicked off with an impressive keynote speech, high-calibre trade forums, innovative 3D printing applications and inspiring networking formats.

(Erfurt, 14 May 2024). The 20th edition of Rapid.Tech 3D kicked off with an impressive keynote speech, high-calibre trade forums, innovative 3D printing applications and inspiring networking formats. In its anniversary year, almost 100 exhibitors and 70 speakers from ten countries will present the latest AM developments and applications at the renowned, pioneering event for industrial 3D printing until 16 May 2024.


In the opening keynote, the Rapid.Tech 3D specialist conference put the topic of 3D printing in the semiconductor industry in the spotlight for the first time. Dr Radu Donose, Competence Lead Additive Manufacturing at Dutch company ASML, revealed that the manufacturer of lithography systems for chip production already mass-produces more than 200 machine parts from metal, plastic or ceramic using additive manufacturing techniques. Taking the example of a wafer carrier system weighing twelve kilograms, he illustrated some of the advantages that can be achieved: while conventional production requires 200 kilograms of raw material and 44 weeks of production time, additive manufacturing reduces this to 22 kilograms and 16 weeks. In general, AM helps to increase the performance of ASML’s machines. To ensure quality, the company has developed an internal standard for the entire value chain, which enables suppliers to produce parts on a consistently reliable basis.


First forum to focus on AM applications in mechanical engineering

The first-ever AM4industry forum, which featured contributions from Reintjes, DiManEx, toolcraft, Hermle, Siemens and Trumpf, among others, highlighted the industrial applications of AM offered by mechanical engineering in general. The Additive Manufacturing (AM) Working Group of the German mechanical and plant engineering association VDMA initiated and hosted the forum, in addition to acting as the conceptual sponsor for the trade event.

Other forums on the opening day of the trade fair focused on new AM developments in aerospace and science.


Preview of 3D-printed containment shroud for the process industry

Pump manufacturer KSB is presenting a preview in the exhibition hall. The company is at the event to introduce the AM community to the first mass-produced 3D-printed containment shroud for mag-drive pumps, which are in high demand in the process industry. The containment shroud is completely covered with vacuum channels, thus enabling the integration of a sensor system that detects potential leaks before they occur. This innovation will make its full debut in June at ACHEMA, the world forum for the process industries.

Technology group Schaeffler is presenting a new system for additive manufacturing with metallic multimaterials. This approach of processing different materials three-dimensionally in a single build space is already being used for toolmaking and in medical technology. The developers see further applications in areas such as energy technology and specific segments of the automotive industry.

Among the innovations on display at mechanical engineering company Metrom’s stand are a mobile processing centre for 3D-printed parts weighing just 45 kilograms and sustainable load carriers made from additively manufactured product-specific plastic inlays and wood.

The representatives from INDO-MIM have probably travelled the furthest to Erfurt. The Indian company is presenting its metal powder production services for 3D printing and AM parts production at Rapid.Tech 3D.


Diving even deeper into the latest AM topics with new formats

AM’s role of as a driver of innovation and growth in Germany and Europe was examined from various perspectives by participants in the afternoon panel discussion. Keynote speaker Dr Donose was joined by Christian Ochs from Siemens Mobility, Professor Johannes Henrich Schleifenbaum from RWTH Aachen University, Juri Munk from the German Aerospace Center (DLR), Thomas Kerk from Rheinmetall, and Christoph Hauck from toolcraft. A crucial point to emerge during the discussion – which was chaired by Dr Bernhard Langefeld from Roland Berger – was that Germany has a good AM foundation, but that the roll-out of commercial applications needs to be further accelerated.

Following the discussion, visitors were able to delve even deeper into current AM topics in new networking formats. At the Technical Deep Dives, ten selected exhibitors presented new developments and their use cases directly at their stands. The Deep Dives will be hosted again at the end of the last day of the event.

Another new feature is the AM Science Corner in the exhibition hall. The Poster Session expands the Science forum by presenting contributions that could not be included in the programme due to the limited number of slots. The authors were able to discuss their current research topics in additive manufacturing with trade visitors at the exhibitor party on the evening of 14 May.


Final of the 3D Pioneers Challenge

The 3D Pioneers Challenge is once again heading to Erfurt. The international competition for pioneering design and technological developments is hosting its final here for what is now the ninth time. Of the submissions – which came from 25 countries across five continents – 43 entries made the shortlist from which the winners of this year’s 3D Pioneers Challenge will be chosen. The awards will be presented to the winners on 15 May at the Rapid.Tech 3D gala evening.


AM pioneer Dr Brent Stucker to open the second day of the event

The second day of the event will begin with a high-calibre keynote in the form of a dialogue. AM pioneer Dr Brent Stucker from Wohlers Associates will examine previous challenges for AM in retrospective and highlight the importance of this key technology as a trailblazer for the future in a conversation with Rapid.Tech 3D advisory board chairman Professor Christian Seidel.

The second keynote speaker is Dr Jan Brummund from Dutch company InnoSyn. He will discuss additive manufacturing as a powerful tool for industrial chemical processes and introduce the Chemistry & Process Engineering forum. The forum will be hosted by DECHEMA, Germany’s expert network for chemical engineering and biotechnology.

Other forums on this day include Innovations in AM; Software, AI & Design; and Part 2 of the Science forum. The 3D Printing Conference will continue in the exhibition hall itself.

About Rapid.Tech 3D:

In just two decades, Rapid.Tech 3D – with the specialist conference as its centrepiece – has become one of Central Europe’s leading additive manufacturing trade events. This year’s event will be held from 14 to 16 May at Messe Erfurt.

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About Messe Erfurt GmbH:

Central Germany’s largest trade show and conference venue, Messe Erfurt has established itself as a forum for businesses, scientists, doctors, trade unions and many other institutions. Every year, it hosts more than 220 events, conventions, conferences, trade fairs, exhibitions, corporate events and concerts, attracting over 650,000 visitors.

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Trade Media Contact

Ina Reichel
- Freelance Journalist - 
Mob: +49 172 602 94 78