As predicted, hot off the (literal) heels of HP’s unveiling of their HP Jet Fusion 3D Printing Solution this morning, the first of many companies have stepped forward in support of incorporating Multi Jet Fusion technology into product development processes and low production runs.
First up to the plate is none other than Nike – consistently ranked the most innovative company in the world. Interestingly enough, the company is building an entirely new facility – AKA The Advanced Product Creation Center – devoted to 3D printing and digital fabrication at their Beaverton, Oregon World Headquarters. The partnership with HP seals the deal for what just might be the sportswear giant’s next move for scaling into on-demand manufacturing.
According to Nike, the partnership with HP builds off of over three years of 3D printing innovations using Selective Laser Sintering (SLS) – the exact process that MJF has proved to excel over. With the new HP partnership, Nike is hoping to speed up their prototyping pace from days to hours and perhaps even take advantage of the low-production capabilities that the new HP machines offer.
Says Tom Clarke, President of Nike Innovation:
“At Nike we innovate for the world’s best athletes. We’ve been using 3D printing to create new performance innovations for footwear for the past several years. Now we are excited to partner with HP to accelerate and scale our existing capabilities as we continue to explore new ways to manufacture performance products to help athletes reach their full potential.”
One of the most recent projects created by the company includes a custom track spike for sprinter Allyson Felix that was only able to be produced through additive manufacturing processes – further instilling the company’s goal of figuring out how to scale 3D printing to deliver custom-tailored products.