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MatterHackers Awarded $5M contract to deliver Ultimaker AM Systems for US Military

FFF 3D Printer
Above: Ultimaker S5 desktop FFF 3D Printer/Image Credit: Ultimaker

MatterHackers, the largest US-based retailer of desktop additive manufacturing systems and materials, revealed that it has been awarded a $5M five-year IDIQ contract to deliver fully-deployable AM systems to US Navy and Marine bases across the United States and overseas. 

The Tier 1 additive manufacturing systems includes Ultimaker S5 3D printers, industrial-grade filament, supplemental IT and support, maintenance strategy, and on-the-ground training facilitated by longtime MatterHackers partner, Building Momentum. This is the largest military contract ever awarded for desktop 3D printers, and demonstrates the Navy’s commitment to widespread adoption of additive manufacturing. Up to 75 Tier 1 Additive Manufacturing Systems can be fielded through 2025. The first Delivery Order to be delivered by the end of 2021, was awarded simultaneously with the IDIQ contract.

Mr. Robert Kimble, the Naval Air Systems Command’s (NAVAIR’s) Naval Sustainment Group Director, whose portfolio includes Naval Aviation Additive Manufacturing, said “The IDIQ brings the much needed capability of printing parts at the point-of-need to our Warfighters.”  The deployment of the Ultimaker S5 desktop polymer system to the Fleet Readiness Centers, Marine Aviation Logistics Squadrons and their associated Expeditionary Units represents the first of NAVAIR’s three-tiered approach to putting Additive Manufacturing in the hands of the Fleet – the others tiers being deployment of Industrial Polymer and Metal part printing systems. 

Additive Manufacturing Systems
Above: Building Momentum provides immersive training programs even for military establishments/Image Source: Building Momentum

MatterHackers is well positioned for this competition given its extensive relationships with vendors in the industry, proven ability to coordinate complex logistics, existing GSA contract status and past performance with all branches of the military, including a previous contract award to deliver similar 3D printers and training to I MEF Additive Manufacturing Training Center at Camp Pendleton.

“MatterHackers’ commitment to NAVAIR is not to just deliver 3D printers to the field and Warfighters, but to provide continued training and personalized support to ensure that the systems are being used to their full capacity for critical applications. Especially with the variety of robust, engineering-grade materials available for the Ultimaker S5, the impact that these AM systems will have on the capabilities of our Warfighters to do their work around the world will be unprecedented.”

– Mara Hitner, Vice President of Strategic Partnerships for MatterHackers

The Ultimaker S5 had been identified as the ideal 3D printer for this effort based on its large-scale build volume, catalogue of compatible materials with NFC-chips for ease of use, IT-secure design options, and powerful Cura software, all at an unmatched price point. MatterHackers has been one of the largest Ultimaker resellers since 2015, and is uniquely prepared for and capable of delivering such a complex order utilizing their multiple shipping and logistics warehouses – one in York, PA and the other at their headquarters in Orange County, CA. 

“Ultimaker has become a leading 3D printing platform by earning the trust of some of the most demanding organizations in the world. Having our Ultimaker S5 3D printing platform selected to be part of the largest US military contract ever awarded for desktop 3D printers is particularly exciting. Serving this critical sector and addressing the unique requirements of US Navy and Marine bases across the United States and overseas advances 3D printing applications across all sectors of industry in years to come.”

– Jürgen von Hollen, CEO of Ultimaker

The final piece to make MatterHackers a one-stop-shop for NAVAIR was the longstanding relationship between MatterHackers and Building Momentum – an immersive training and interactive learning company that offers programs to empower people to become better problem solvers through technology. 3D printers are a standard tool used in their training programs.  Based in Alexandria, VA, Building Momentum will provide hands-on training for every base receiving a Tier 1 AM System, and provide continued follow-on training for printing advanced materials and problem solving throughout the five-year contract period, both in-person and virtually.

According to Thomas Sullivan, Chief Operating Officer at Building Momentum, “We are grateful for the opportunity to train NAVAIR’s team on these 3D printers, as we have seen firsthand what a huge impact they can have on affecting real change within the military, as well as corporations. Our Innovation Bootcamp training program has seen widespread success over the years, and 3D printing is a critical part of that program. We look forward to creating a relationship with NAVAIR and continuing our commitment to MatterHackers to the benefit of all parties.”

About MatterHackers: MatterHackers is the largest 3D printing retailer in the U.S., with a selection of 70+ desktop 3D printers and 2000+ materials available at MatterHackers.com, and at their showroom in Orange County, CA.  MatterHackers’ mission is to make 3D printing and digital fabrication easier and more accessible for everyone. 

About Building Momentum: Building Momentum’s immersive training and interactive learning programs empower people to become better problem solvers—from corporate leaders to active-duty service members in the field.


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