Aalto University and VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland Ltd have recently launched a research project focusing on digital spare parts in collaboration with 13 companies. The project studies new operating and earnings models, current and future technological potential, and builds preconditions for a functional network.
The purpose of the project is to promote the transition from traditional production chains of spare parts to a dynamic network model that generates added value by means of digitisation. The spare parts and any relevant information would be transferred and stored in digital format. The spare parts would be manufactured using 3D printing according to need, usually close to the end user’s premises.
The project aims at creating opportunities for Finnish companies to lead the way in setting up an international network of digital spare parts: “We expect the project to create new international business opportunities,” says Tomi Kalpio, who is one of the main owners and founders of 3DTech Oy. The company has already carried out trials to manufacture 3Dprinted spare parts.
The two-year project launched at the beginning of 2016 is funded by Tekes and the participating research organisations and companies: 3D Online Factory Ltd, 3DTech Oy, AM Finland Oy, Hetitec Oy, Kone Corporation, Laserle Oy, Materflow Oy, Multiprint 3D Oy, Patria Aviation Oy, Raute Corporation, Rolls-Royce Oy Ab, Sacotec Components Oy and Wärtsilä Finland Oy.