Open Access

Table 9

Key activities in 4 stages.

Stage Activities
Stage 1 Assessment: Strategic analysis of distributed (local) recycling, supply and manufacturing
HB register and shows their interest to do HBM in AM and receive support from government or enterprises to start their HBM in specific AM products. SME explores the feasibility of adding new AM business at minimum investment. The business mainly covers AM printers, AM materials, and AM maintenance and AM services for HB and LE.
LE considers adding new AM process even they are not seeking radical alterations in either supply chains or products, but explore AM material sources for specific products, and set up new MRF, or add branch MRF side, to serve SME and HB in a radius of 100km surrounding.
Stage 2 Distribution: a distribution topology of AM community at 100km MRF surrounding is setup HBM starts to setup their printers and filaments based on their products selection. Government and authorities are suggested to launch loan or minimum financial support to HBM to setup HBM without any financial concern. HBM starts to receive minimum training in AM printings.
SME analyzes company's key strength and decide the AM business strategy and start to add or open new AM business. SME takes advantage of scale economics offered by AM as a potential enabler of supply chain transformation for the specific products.
Stage 3 Standardization: AM society, led by LE and SME, establish cloud platform for common practices. HB starts to work closely within their AM community by exchanging message and information sharing. Each HBM share same information through their cloud platform, so each HBM work with a SME to secure AM materials, printing services, adaptor and software in an efficient way.
SME promote their AM business for a wider coverage that focus on the standardization of AM technologies. As all SME and LE share same cloud platform and use same standard, SME ensures “service on demands”, standardized AM technologies and software are established. SME may also take the key role to support HBM in navigating the AM ecosystem and exploit resulting business opportunities [37].
LE lead AM community, the SME and HBM, to seek best practices in their community which covers the emerging technologies for AM source materials, best-fit materials and printing technologies for specific products, and any collaboration for innovative activities.
Stage 4 Establishment: Business as usual (BAU) is established, both quantity and quality are resolved. HBM maximizes their productivity by bringing-in their families into AM community to increase volume of same AM pattern. Meanwhile, as the standard process and software has been established, HBM operates AM business by BAU and fully contributes AM scalability.
SME fully support HBM in a long-running business. Together with LE, SME enables virtualization in a distributed (local) recycling, supply and manufacturing environment. SME continue to provide most update information and software at cloud platform to serve their HBM clients.
LE continues to lead the AM development. Together with SME, LE serves AM community by providing periodical forums. LE considers forming joint venture with SME to transform AM into mainstream, and use CM as backup solutions to support unexpected volume issue.

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