GE opens $39m additive manufacturing center in Pittsburgh

Posted on 6 Apr 2016 by Tim Brown

GE yesterday celebrated the grand opening of a new manufacturing facility that will drive the implementation of additive manufacturing across the company.

The Center for Additive Technology Advancement (CATA) – located near Pittsburgh in Findlay Township, Penn. – will be the flagship center for additive manufacturing, focused on developing and implementing industrial applications from which all GE businesses – and in turn GE customers – can benefit.

The new facility represents a $39 million investment over three years and will result in the creation of 50 high-tech engineering jobs initially, in disciplines ranging from mechanical and electrical to systems and software engineering. This is GE’s first multi-modal site in the U.S., designed as an innovation hub offering training and development in both design and applications.

In conjunction with the CATA opening, GE launched “The Future Workforce: Advanced Manufacturing’s Impact on the Economy,” a white paper detailing advanced manufacturing’s positive impact on jobs and in shaping the future of work. CATA’s job creation serves as a proof point for many of the paper’s findings, as advanced manufacturing accounts for 13 percent of all jobs in the U.S. and contributes $3.1 trillion to the economy. In addition, for every advanced manufacturing job created, 3.5 jobs are supported through the supply chain, and the average salary for a technologist in the industry is $95,000.

GE marked the occasion with a program attended by GE Chairman and CEO Jeff Immelt, GE Chief Productivity Officer Philippe Cochet, representatives from America Makes, government officials and customers.

“Today’s opening is strong evidence that GE is leading the digital transformation of industry, starting with a hub for the advancement of additive manufacturing techniques,” said GE Chief Productivity Officer Philippe Cochet. “The application of insights from digital connectivity in collaboration with intelligent devices will elevate the skills of our workforce, streamline productivity and enhance product development overall. This represents a new era of manufacturing.”

The new facility reflects GE’s belief that the intersection of technology and manufacturing – marrying hardware with software – will change the way we create, iterate and service products. In line with GE’s Brilliant Factory concept, CATA will combine lean manufacturing and optimal productivity with advanced software analytics to improve capabilities and usage of additive manufacturing across GE while advancing materials sciences and inspection technologies.

“With Pittsburgh’s developing tech sector, Pennsylvania is the perfect home for GE’s Additive Manufacturing Center,” said Governor Tom Wolf. “We welcome GE’s investment in the state with opening this new manufacturing facility and the promise of new jobs to the greater Pittsburgh region.”

“This additive manufacturing facility will create 50 important jobs for Pennsylvania, tapping into our highly trained workforce and existing pool of high-tech savvy talent,” said Congressman Tim Murphy (R-PA). “With this commitment from GE, we are advancing Pittsburgh’s capability to compete in the international marketplace and to make this state the epicenter of tomorrow’s manufacturing.”

“The Pittsburgh community represents the future of industry with its strong pool of talent and academia. GE is proud to partner with the community, and to call Pittsburgh home to one of our innovation hubs,” Cochet added.

Additive manufacturing / 3D printer market

Worldwide shipments of 3D Printers rose +19% in Q4’15 compared to a year ago, according to figures released today by CONTEXT, the IT market research company.  Of the total 73,012 units shipped in the final quarter of last year, 96% of these were Desktop/Personal printers, mostly priced below $5,000, representing a +22% year-on-year growth rate. Shipments of 3D printers in the Industrial/Professional segment declined -24% over the same period with 2,907 printers shipped.

Industry leader Stratasys retained its top market share position in Q4’15, shipping 48% of all 3D Printers in the Industrial/Professional segment in the period but sold 29% fewer printers in Q4’15 than a year ago.

Related Event:

Register for Additive 2016 taking place in Sheffield, UK – 21 April, 2016 – sponsored by Stratasys, Materialise, Hieta and 3TRPD.