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3D printing brings competitiveness to SMES – million euros in funding for Smart Machines and Manufacturing Centre


3D printing is part of the digital revolution and is transforming practices in the manufacturing sector. The Smart Machines and Manufacturing Centre SMACC, which is jointly owned by Tampere University of Technology (TUT) and VTT Technical Research Centre Ltd (VTT), is starting a project that will use 3D printing to boost the competitiveness of SMEs in particular. The project budget is a million euros and funding is being provided by the Council of the Tampere Region, TUT and VTT.   

Digital design and modelling, the use of various printing technologies, and community-based practices are the development focuses of the project. It will also involve the enhancement of SMACC's operations and create a basis for developing the sector's ecosystem. 

– The Tampere region is becoming a strong centre of expertise in 3D printing. This new project will combine the technology and business development perspectives. The rapid feed-through of research results for use by companies is also important" says Tiina Harala, a Senior Specialist from the Council of the Tampere Region.

The 'Välkky' project (Demanding digital manufacturing as a source of added value in the ecosystem) will kick off in October and last until the end of 2018.

Companies encouraged to develop

TUT and VTT's joint centre of expertise, SMACC, provides a wide range of expertise, rapid solutions and a broad collaboration network for SMEs in particular.

– SMACC's agile practices are also being used in this project. They create new kinds of opportunities for SMEs to use digitalisation to add value to their businesses, says Risto Kuivanen, Business Development Manager at VTT. 

All interested companies are invited to participate in the project. 

– For example, the project will involve workshops where TUT and VTT will share their expertise and the latest knowledge in the sector, says Professor Kari T. Koskinen of TUT. 

The project's start-up seminar will be held at 1 pm on Wednesday 12 October 2016 at TUT's Campus Arena in Tampere. You are welcome!

For further information, please contact:

Tampere University of Technology: Professor Kari T. Koskinen,, tel. +358 400 634 242

Council of the Tampere Region: Senior Specialist Tiina Harala,, tel. +358 50 594 4533