Materialise and Siemens PLM: Innovators you can count on

By Danny Santoro

Watch this brief video of Andreas Saar, VP of Additive Manufacturing, Siemens PLM Software, discussing Additive Manufacturing with Stefaan Motte, VP of Software, Materialise, during the Formnext Conference 2016.The video appears below the transcript.

Motte: Siemens is a company that we know very well. Welcome to Formnext. For us it is a very interesting and exciting addition.  You see that additive is buzzing everywhere — A lot of possibilities, a lot of influence on the business, on product innovation, and on production.  We also know as experts in the field that it is not as easy as just buying a machine, hitting the “print” button, and being done with it. Of course, the choice of the technology is very important. Can you share your experience and your thoughts about how important it is to get the right software to get the job done?

Saar:  I think the software side plays a major role because the digital process necessary to really drive additive manufacturing is essential to make a good product. And, we need to convince the community who uses and designs parts, what it means to do an additive design to manufacturing process. That is why it’s important that this technology really be viewed as a consistent end to end process.

Motte:  Now that additive manufacturing is getting real and is getting introduced into mainstream manufacturing, having that digital flow all the way from design to production to post processing is key. How does Siemens PLM plan to realize exactly that?

Saar: Siemens started thinking a while ago what that means to our customers and means in the overall process of designing products, and simulating products, and producing them.  The additive process amazingly touches all the areas of a product lifecycle process, and that is why it is so interesting.  But, on the other side, it is also the challenge. And, for Siemens and for our customers, we see automation, to deliver an end to end process which allows our customers to design additive, make sure it is right the first time, simulate processes and print it at the end.

Motte: Can you tell us more about Siemens explorations together with Materialise on this front?

Saar:  Yes, of course. We are in the business of PLM for a long time.  You are in the business of additive –understanding the experience from the material, from process very well.  And, it is natural that we say we cannot do everything by ourselves. We cannot gain this experience within a year or a short time.  That is why partnering together with leaders in the market who have this experience, and put this technology together, is the best way forward.

Motte: Quality is at the heart of everything Siemens is doing, so it is also at the heart of this initiative. Is there any particular challenge that we need to address in order to accelerate the adoption of additive manufacturing in the whole mainstream manufacturing?

Saar: For us, the main reason we are collaborating here is, we understand very well how complex trusting the printing process is and that is where Materialise has huge experience. When we can bring some mature technology into our NX process, but on the other side you also have experience on what it means on the modeling side. That has to come into the mainstream design to simulation process. Bringing mature technology into an existing environment makes it work.  And that’s how we can convince the community of designers and people who are at the forefront of making that happen, into the process of additive.

Motte: For a visionary company like Siemens, how will additive manufacturing change manufacturing?

Saar: I think it will change everything.  Additive manufacturing is a game changer. It is the next revolution.  It lets you reimagine your products, reimagine your designs, reimagine your tooling, the factory, the processes, and provides a totally new business model to everything. So from my perspective and Siemens perspective, additive has a major opportunity to change everything that we do.  And, it is a game changer.

Motte: I couldn’t agree more. Thank you for having this talk.  I’m looking forward to our continued collaboration, shaping this industry, and changing this revolution together.

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This article first appeared on the Siemens Digital Industries Software blog at