Society of Manufacturing Engineers Announces RAPID 2012 Conference and Exposition Lineup

Experts to Address 3D Imaging, 3D Printing and Additive Manufacturing Technologies and Issues Related to Business and the Economy

DEARBORN, Mich., January 30, 2012 - The Society of Manufacturing Engineers (SME) today announced the speaker line-up for the RAPID 2012 Conference and Exposition to be held in Atlanta, May 22-25. Keynote presentations, conference sessions, technical briefings, workshops, tours, 3D printing art gallery and 3D printing fashion show are among the highlights of the additive manufacturing industry's premier event.

Keynote speakers for the event include Paul Doe, chief designer at Prodrive Rally Programs and Terry Wohlers, president of Wohlers Associates. Doe's presentation will provide an overview of Prodrive's development of the MINI John Cooper Works World Rally Car and Wohlers will address additive manufacturing during his State of the Industry report.

"RAPID has become the most important meeting place in North America for those involved with additive manufacturing," said industry analyst Terry Wohlers. "SME has created another world-class program, and I'm thrilled to be a part of it. Having it in Atlanta for the first time will attract new customer prospects from this region of the U.S. and this is important to the growth of the industry."

RAPID is regarded as North America's most comprehensive display of rapid manufacturing equipment, software and service providers. The conference and event provides numerous opportunities to network with members of the SME Rapid Technologies & Additive Manufacturing (RTAM) community and study advanced uses of emerging technologies. This year marks the inaugural 3D Print Fashion Show and the third annual Contemporary Art Gallery and will present new and innovative uses of additive manufacturing.

The event also features additive manufacturing and 3D imaging technology briefings, and workshops led by industry experts who will educate and inform attendees on advanced manufacturing topics, including:
  • Fundamentals of Rapid Technologies and Additive Manufacturing
  • Fundamentals of Reverse Engineering and 3D Data Capture
  • Metal Parts Using Additive Technologies
Attendees are also invited to tour an Atlanta-area foundry and manufacturing facility, as well as a technical college and product development firm. The 2012 "All-American" tour schedule includes visits to the following sites:
  • Newell/Rubbermaid
    Visit the rapid prototyping lab, prototype assembly room and shop area of a global marketer of consumer and commercial products where Objet, Z Corporation, Stratasys and EOS 3D printers are in action.
  • Slingshot Product Development Group
    Learn how rapid prototyping, 3D scanning and artisan sculpting are applied to the product development cycle to reduce costs and time to market while improving repeatability.
  • Georgia Institute of Technology
    See how polyjetting, stereolithography and laser sintering technologies are used in the Manufacturing Research Center and the School of Mechanical Engineering.
  • Inferno Art Foundry
    See collaboration, cutting edge technologies and techniques at work in the casting process.
"RAPID has earned a reputation as the "go-to" event for manufacturing knowledge, education and business development opportunities," said Gary Mikola, SME business development manager. "The RAPID 2012 event schedule is designed to connect attendees and exhibitors with technologies and resources needed for businesses looking to remain competitive in a global marketplace and challenging economy."

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About RAPID:
RAPID is North America's definitive additive manufacturing conference and exposition. The event brings buyers, sellers and end-users of design, prototyping, tooling and direct manufacturing technologies together in an environment that facilitates networking and business interaction. Attendees can evaluate the latest materials and machinery, compare processes, talk to industry experts and make valuable contacts. Exhibitors can meet new customers, discuss projects face-to-face and generate sales. For more information, please visit

About SME:
The Society of Manufacturing Engineers ( SME) is the premier source for manufacturing knowledge, education and networking. Through its many programs, events, activities and online training division, Tooling U, SME connects manufacturing practitioners to each other, to the latest technologies and to the most up-to-date manufacturing processes. SME has members around the world and is supported by a network of chapters and technical communities. A 501(c) 3 organization, SME is a leader in manufacturing workforce development issues, working with industry, academic and government partners to support the current and future skilled workforce.

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