RapidPro 2017


RapidPro has acquired a prominent place in the exhibition landscape in recent years. In this years’ edition the organisers want to put special emphasis on the business case, because – whilst technologically a lot is possible – this is where the biggest challenges surface at the moment.

After a successful RapidPro 2016, RapidPro 2017 will again be organised in Veldhoven, The Netherlands. “This year we searched for best practices,” says Marcel Schneijdenberg from organizer Mikrocentrum. Graduated as an industrial designer at TU Delft and Eindhoven University of Technology, he is well aware of what is involved in the production of prototypes and small series. “Technically, a lot is possible. In fact, almost anything can be made. But who wants to be successful in  quickly bringing unique products to market, must value the whole rapid tooling palette, of which additive manufacturing is of course a part. And CNC milling, molding, vacuum forming and thermoforming should also not be forgotten. They each have their place in the manufacturing chain as well as their own requirements that must be taken into account in the design stage already.”

Over fifty lectures
By focusing on best practices, RapidPro wants to connect even better to the questions that serious manufacturing companies and professionals have. “This year we again divided RapidPro into a professional and an industrial part,” Marcel continues. “Industrial represents suppliers for the manufacturing industry, industrial 3D printers software vendors, service providers and research institutions. Desktop 3D printers, artists and designers are in the professional part, and there are lectures for each group. Daan Kersten for example, CEO of Additive Industries, will be present to talk about the development and production of the now famous MetalFab. And Scott Summit, former design director at 3D Systems, will tell the design story about ‘blue sky printing’. We also have a stage for the design engineers of BNO (Association of Dutch Designers). In addition, Wilco Verheij from Canon Production Solutions will give an insight in what Canon is doing at the moment, which is all I can say at the moment.”

When and where?
RapidPro Industrial and RapidPro Professional take place on 7–9 March 2017 at the NH Conference Centre Koningshof Veldhoven, The Netherlands.
For more information please contact Marcel Schneijdenberg, m.schneijdenberg@mikrocentrum.nl, +31 (0) 40-296 99 22, www.mikrocentrum.nl, or www.rapidpro.nl

There are high-level  lectures – in total more than fifty – and the less frequent user has also been taken into account: in the session ‘Additive Manufacturing for dummies’ all the basic considerations are explained. “And this year there is extra focus on certification and standardization. This remains to be a hot topic in the market, which we will tackle together with Siris,” Marcel concludes.

Exhibition space
Regarding the exhibition space: in the view of Mikrocentrum, the fact that everyone wants to participate shows that RapidPro has outgrown the region and is unique in its kind. Schneijdenberg “Important providers of 3D printers and additive manufacturing systems will be present. So in addition to the ‘usual suspects’ of recent years, we now also have companies such as Trumpf, Sisma and representatives from HP,” Marcel tells. “Moreover, more and more parties from the manufacturing chain of small series and prototypes are finding their way to RapidPro. Whether it’s ideas, designs, engineering, production, finishing, coatings, all technology will gather under one roof, including successful application stories.”