3D Printer HardwareDefenseMetal Additive ManufacturingUK

SPEE3D launches Expeditionary Manufacturing Unit (EMU)

Combining the XSPEE3D with its SPEE3Dcell post-processing and testing unit in two 20-foot shipping containers

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SPEE3D, a leading metal additive manufacturing company, has launched its Expeditionary Manufacturing Unit (EMU), a complete on-site mobile AM solution. EMU combines SPEE3D’s expeditionary metal 3D printer, XSPEE3D, with its SPEE3Dcell post-processing and testing unit in two 20-foot shipping containers, which together can produce cast-equivalent metal parts in record time close to the point of need.

Participating in the European Defence Agency’s AM Village 2024 Workshop in Tournai, Belgium, SPEE3D will demonstrate its deployable technology alongside the British Army to militaries from over 25 EU and NATO countries.

SPEE3D’s EMU enables the replacement of metal parts in hours instead of days or weeks – minimizing the cost of disruption and downtime. Unlike other AM solutions, the EMU does not require dangerous and expensive lasers or inert gasses. Additionally, no extensive prior expertise with AM technology is required.

“The launch of our Expeditionary Manufacturing Unit addresses the current state of the global supply chain, which is fragile and increasingly under pressure,” said Byron Kennedy, CEO of SPEE3D. “Part of the issue for defense and other heavy industries is getting critical equipment up and running quickly to avoid costly production delays. EMU will enable the British Army and others to take control, giving them the ability to print and post-process parts very quickly from anywhere.”

SPEE3D launches Expeditionary Manufacturing Unit (EMU) - combining the XSPEE3D with its SPEE3Dcell post-processing and testing unit.
SPEE3D’s XSPEE3D.

The system includes two 20-foot containers with twist locks, a ruggedized, mobile metal 3D printer that can produce high-density metal parts in a wide range of materials, and a fully-equipped post-processing shop – including a heat treatment furnace, CNC three-axis mill, tooling, and testing equipment. As a truly expeditionary product, EMU can be transported on a single platform (truck trailer/ship/plane).

“Through its continual program of modernization, the British Army embraces new innovative manufacturing solutions to keep it at the forefront of emerging technology and at a tactical advantage over its potential adversaries,” said a UK Army spokesperson. “Our collaboration with SPEE3D has produced the world’s first fully field deployable 3D cold metal printing capability, heralding a step change in deployable engineering capabilities for our forces deployed overseas.”

SPEE3D works extensively with defense around the world, including the Japanese, US, UK, and Australian defense forces. Last fall, a team was in Poland training Ukrainian military personnel on the technology. In the future, the company will be working with the UAE Military of Defense.

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Edward Wakefield

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

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