Jacques Babaud

AM, or additive manufacturing: this groundbreaking technology is often mentioned but rarely explained.

Yet additive manufacturing is becoming a key part of industrial processes. It allows its users to imagine and manufacture components with the sole limit of human imagination. Manufacturing giant Michelin, one of its early adopters, believes that Japan is one of the key areas for its usage. It has set up an AM platform in the industrial basin of Gunma prefecture. Jacques Babaud explains the technology, Michelin’s involvement, and its relevance for Japan’s industry.  

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  • Listening time: 18 minutes

Musique : ©Aftermath de Dylan Sitts

With the kind support of Michelin Nihon Tire

Michelin contributes to the future of monozukuri in Japan through metal 3D printing

Japan is still at an early stage of adoption of metal 3D printing or metal Additive Manufacturing (AM). Education of a new generation of talented engineers will facilitate the spread of this disruptive innovation. People development through Application is part of the mission of the “Gunma AM Platform” (GAM) consortium.

Michelin has been using metal 3D printing technology for tire mold manufacturing for 10+ years. Michelin established in 2016 the “AddUp” joint venture producing 3D metal printers one side, and operating those printers to print parts for final customer on the other. In Japan, many potential users need a deeper understanding of the technology—notably its possibilities and limitations— before making the leap from conventional production means. The public-private-academic consortium “GAM” wants to contribute to this revolution.



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