In order to help scale up use of 3D printing, The Singapore government have formed a National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Cluster (NAMIC) to support the country’s 3D printing infrastructure.
The new cluster was launched by Mr S Iswaran, Minister in the Prime Minister’s Office and Second Minister for Trade and Industry and Home Affairs. The NAMIC scheme will be led by the Nanyang Technological University (NTU), through its innovation and enterprise arm, NTUitive, in partnership with the National University of Singapore (NUS) and Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD).
The initiative is one of the four key technology areas identified for development under the SG$200 million (US$141.6 million) Innovation Cluster Programme announced by Prime Minister Mr Minister Lee Hsien Loong in October 2013. The programme is led by SPRING Singapore and National Research Foundation (NRF). “Namic will translate related upstream research in Singapore’s public research entities and institutes of higher learning into downstream commercial applications, lowering the barriers for companies to incorporate additive manufacturing technologies into their core business,” said Mr Iswaran.
The new cluster will comprise of three additive manufacturing translation and capability development research centres. They are: NTU’s Singapore Centre for 3D Printing, NUS’s 3D Printing initiative for medical technologies and SUTD’s Digital Manufacturing and Design Centre. “This is a key national initiative that brings together all the local research institutes to jointly advance the field of additive manufacturing and promote its adoption in our local enterprises,” said Professor Lam Khin Yong, NTU’s Chief of Staff and Vice President (Research).
The centres will offer research expertise and translate research knowledge into commercial applications for industry. It will establish a joint fund to support these translational projects between research institutes and the industry members. In addition it will also give access to incubators for start-ups and spin-offs and help companies accelerate the adoption of 3D printing technology into their businesses.