One of the largest and most up-to-date rapid manufacturing research centres in the world was officially opened at the Queens Building, De Montfort University, Leicester, on 12 July, 1999. At a cost of £4M, the centre has been established to carry out work on behalf of the members of the Rapid Manufacturing Consortium that the university has formed with leading European companies, including ABB Alstom Power, Caradon, Daimler-Chrysler, Ericson, Flymo, Lotus Engineering, Martin-Baker Aircraft, Perkins Engines, Siemens, TWR and Volvo Car.
In addition to dealing with the technology transfer of all aspects of rapid manufacturing, the centre, under the leadership of Professor Dickens, will be involved with the training of engineers from the consortium members. A series of seminars will be conducted each year and courses for Masters and PhD degrees will be arranged.
The centre is equipped with a wide range of machines and computer systems, embracing rapid prototyping machines, spark erosion and software. Its RP equipment includes SLA700 Stereolithography and Thermojet machines from 3D Systems, an Eosint N Extended metal sintering machine from EOS, and FDM 2000 fused deposition modelling machine from Stratasys. It also boasts 40 Unigraphics CADCAM workstations and an Agie CNC spark erosion machine as well as the services of Materialise and Ciba Specialty Chemicals.
For more information visit web site http://www.dmu.ac.uk.