New Rieger organ at the Helsinki Music Centre features 3D printed pipes

The 260 meters worth of 3D printed sounding pipes and wind lines were crafted from wood-based UPM Formi 3D biocomposite

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The striking facade pipes of the new Rieger organ at the Helsinki Music Centre are the first of their kind – crafted from Finnish, wood-based UPM Formi 3D biocomposite. The organ features 3D printed sounding pipes and wind lines totalling 260 meters. With 124 sound registers divided among several different sets of pipes, it is the largest in Finland and Scandinavia, and is the largest modern organ placed in a concert hall worldwide.

Helsinki Music Centre’s organ is a result of international collaboration, with the biocomposite material produced by UPM in Finland being shipped to Burgos, Spain, for 3D printing. Subsequently, the printed pipes were transported to organ builder Rieger Orgelbau, in Austria. The organ was initially handcrafted by Rieger Orgelbau, disassembled, shipped in parts to Helsinki, and then reconstructed in the Music Centre’s concert hall.

The unique design of the facade pipes necessitated finding suitable material and a reliable, flexible, and cost-effective manufacturing method. The fine cellulose fibers in the biocomposite facilitate large-scale 3D printing, and the material’s minimal shrinkage, rapid cooling, and self-sustaining properties enable the efficient production of complex elements.

New Rieger organ at the Helsinki Music Centre features 3D printed pipes crafted from wood-based UPM Formi 3D biocomposite.
The Helsinki Music Centre.

3D printing generates minimal waste, and the wood-based biocomposite, which inherently possesses acoustic qualities commonly used in, for example, speaker enclosures, is 100% recyclable.

“The organ sounds magnificent. It’s wonderful to open the concert hall to the public and enjoy both the music and the visual experience that our new organ and performers will provide starting from January,” said Kaisa Näreranta, Executive Director of the Helsinki Music Centre Foundation and Project Manager of the Organ project.

The Helsinki Music Centre Foundation initiated a naming campaign for the organ pipes – raising funds for organ music, and producing organ programs, and events. UPM contributed to the campaign through its Biofore Share and Care program.

“At UPM, we have a long tradition of supporting the arts, and we wanted to participate in the Helsinki Music Centre Foundation’s donation campaign. We have named all the fantastic facade pipes of the organ,” said Hanna Maula, Vice President of Communication and Brand at UPM.

The new Rieger organ will be inaugurated on New Year’s Day 2024. The opening concert on the same day will feature Olivier Latry, a concert organist who contributed to the design team of the organ.

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746 composites AM companies individually surveyed and studied. Core composites AM market generated over $785 million in 2023. Market expected to grow to $7.8 billion by 2033 at 25.8% CAGR. This new...

Edward Wakefield

Edward is a freelance writer and additive manufacturing enthusiast looking to make AM more accessible and understandable.

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