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Grohe Introduces 3D Printing to Streamline Design, Development, Production

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Grohe, the world leader in supplying sanitary and water fittings, is planning to expand its production of fittings and incorporate 3D printing technology into its prototyping processes.

Looks like Grohe Water Technology AG has big plans for 2018 including expanding its production of fittings by using 3D printing in a new pilot project.

The German company revealed they will be using the technology at this year’s ISH trade show in Frankfurt am Main — an event for the combined topic of water and energy.

Grohe has the goal of accelerating product innovation by 20 percent. As well as this, it intends on improving efficiency at the new design center in Hemer, Germany. Therefore, new technologies are an important factor in design, development, and production.

The company’s plans for the next few months, as well as using 3D printing to expand the production of fittings, are to launch its latest ceramic line in March and work on new product innovations for 2019 ISH.

Creating Prototypes at Grohe with 3D Printing

The Grohe team have been using a Dimension 3D Printer from Stratasys. With 3D printing, they’ve already noticed a huge reduction in time and cost when creating prototypes.

According to a Stratasys application story, previously the company would rely on the company toolmakers or external suppliers. However, in the first four months of use, the 3D printer ran for over 380 hours.

Friedrich Imhoff, a Grohe product development manager explains some of the benefits of 3D printing. He says: “We reduced the time to develop a flushing system by 50 percent. Product samples could be produced at an early stage of the development process… The product can be presented within a short amount of time and our product managers are able to identify themselves with the product at a very early stage.”

Thanks to its use of technology, the company has received over 300 awards for design and innovation. Grohe is especially praised for its sustainability.

Interested in finding out more? Grohe CEO, Michael Rauterkus, is speaking about “Water as a resource in times of digitalization” at the World Market Leaders Summit today.

Source: Hotel Designs

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