The aims of iBUS project were presented in the Valley of Toys in Spain last September, 30th. The event, which was held at the facilities of AIJU, one of the partners, had around 40 participants, whose profiles are displayed in Figure 1.
Figure 1 Working profiles of the attendants
Three partners of the project were invited to give a speech: LeFabShop, ManOPT and the University of Limerick. The event consisted of four main blocks considering all the stages of product development: advanced materials, design and customisation factors, advanced manufacturing processes and new business models. In this last block, the iBUS project was presented jointly with Entellexi modelling systems (Figure 2). LeFabShop’s presentation was included within the Design block.
Figure 2 Snapshot of the presentation of the iBUS Project
After all the presentations, the event ended with a round table in which all the doubts were shared, as well as the vision of future of the attendants by block.
iBUS speakers were also asked. In their answer, LeFabShop highlighted the possibilities that Additive Manufacturing (AM) has to be implemented in commercial applications. Notwithstanding, in order to achieve this major penetration, technologically speaking, we must keep on researching to broaden the range of materials and improve their sturdiness, the speed and the productivity of current equipment . He also highlighted that when a product is being developed, it is not appropriate to think about replacing a conventional manufacturing system with an additive one in itself. It must be conceived from the beginning considering the limitations of design, the manufacturing equipment, the communication with the customer or the manufacturer, the business model, etc.
On this regard, AIJU would like to highlight the importance that safety issues have in such a product as the one aimed within the iBUS project (one of the most restringing in the world) and the way in which other AM defendants have dismissed this important aspect.
Entellexi and the University of Limerick were asked on the role that AM Industry 4.0 will have on new business models. Entellexi highlighted the way in which ICT connect manufacturing plants and the potential of those technologies to make bespoken products and/or products/pieces adapted to customers’ requirements. In this sense, the role of AM is of great importance. In parallel, this can highly contribute to a range of new possibilities for the industry on both products and innovation business models, as well as the supply chains, such as the ones proposed in the iBUS project. In this model, consumers can become designers using tools as the cloud platforms; the manufacturing process can change its paradigm from mass production to just-in-time manufacturing under demand pulled by end-users, repairing components, e-manufacturing, digital warehouses, etc. thus simplifying the stream value chain. New models of AM services as 3D printing shops, creators of standard 3D content or under demand, link services, etc. are also arising.
The dissemination actions made to present the event had a great reach. It is estimated that the press release issued with the title “AIJU to hold an international event on the main challenges the creative industry faces” reached 8.561 people in Spain and 131.650 in Europe and at an international Level. The Europe Enterprise Network (EEN) sent it 4 times to their data base, composed of 1.000 receivers. Also AIJU’s data based was used: the information was sent three times to more than 5.900 receivers, from which 2.100 read the information.