Why Brightlands Materials Center should be in the news!


My local Dutch newspaper didn’t report a single word about the new Brightlands Materials Center. Perhaps because Brightlands is tucked away in the far South of The Netherlands, or maybe because the press release wasn’t deemed worthy enough. However, I am certain that this news will be of real and lasting interest to the 3D Printing and Additive Manufacturing communities. I’ll explain why in a moment, but first a little background.

The Brightlands Materials Center was opened by the TNO (the Netherlands Organisation for Applied Scientific Research) and the Province of Limburg in order to (and I quote): “further untap the potential of polymeric materials at Brightlands Chemelot Campus in Sittard-Geleen.”

To this end, a variety of partners have pledged to invest EUR 45 million in the new center over a period of five years, which will hopefully “bring top scientists and industry professionals together to develop sustainable, breakthrough materials and application technologies that will change the market.”

So why is this rather dry press release important to readers of 3DFab+Print? Well, take a look at some of the partners and what they are funding:

Initiative #1: DSM, as one of the leading materials science companies in the world with a strong foothold in the region, will join the 3D printing program of the Brightlands Materials Center and is committed to further develop a successful materials center by building on DSM’s extensive materials knowledge and expertise.

Initiative #2: Together with the newly established institute Chemelot InSciTe, the Brightlands Materials Center will further explore and exploit the opportunities in biomedical 3D-printing applications.

Initiative #3: MERLN, in conjunction with Maastricht University and Maastricht University Medical Center+, intends to substantially contribute to the success of the joint Program on Additive Manufacturing both by allocating knowledge and human resources like PhDs in the field of regenerative medicine.

As I understand it, the Additive Manufacturing program will start with sixteen PhDs and three scientists to explore the materials challenges in industrial and biomedical 3D-printing applications.

I’m sure you’ll agree this is very exciting stuff which is definitely newsworthy and something the media should have covered. As an editor I for one am keenly looking forward to seeing the on-going results of this venture.