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Ricoh opens Center of Excellence on Centennial Campus

Two students work in the CAMAL lab on NC State's Centennial Campus.

Ricoh, a leading global provider of integrated digital services and print and imaging solutions, has opened its Center of Excellence on NC State’s Centennial Campus. Proximity to leading talent and research are cited as drivers for choosing the location. NC State is home to one of the nation’s top programs in additive manufacturing and ranks No. 12 for industrial engineering.

“Ricoh’s new office on Centennial and the partnership with NC State will help manufacturers accelerate innovation and product development,” said Gary Turner, managing director of additive manufacturing at Ricoh. “As the applications for additive manufacturing grow, 3D printing will drive efficiencies for a range of industries.”

Ricoh has already teamed up with NC State’s Center for Additive Manufacturing and Logistics (CAMAL). On campus, researchers are working together to solve supply chain challenges through 3D printing. The company also has established a workforce development program for undergraduate and graduate students. Building on concepts learned in the classroom, paid interns gain a practical understanding of business applications.

This partnership enables opportunities for enhanced teaching and learning, as well as real-time insights into industry needs.

“We are proud to welcome Ricoh as the latest industry partner to join NC State’s Centennial Campus,” said Chancellor Randy Woodson. “This partnership enables opportunities for enhanced teaching and learning, as well as real-time insights into industry needs.”

Joint projects with NC State aim to improve additive manufacturing processes and technologies. Collaborations will address when, where and how to most effectively use 3D printing in the supply chain process. One recent example is the development of a software tool to analyze supply chain data and optimize logistics for 3D printing.

Through the new workforce development program, students will be engaged in how Ricoh deploys 3D printing — including machine operations, material sciences, design and development, software systems and the finer details of manufacturing. The partnership will help identify skills gaps and develop certifications to grow the additive manufacturing workforce in industries including healthcare, aerospace and automotive.

Located in the Keystone Science Center, Ricoh will initially invest $1.8 million in the Centennial Campus office. The company also plans to partner with NC State’s College of Design, Analytical Instrumentation Facility and Constructed Facilities Lab, in addition to engaging with several other colleges and centers. The partnership is being led and managed by NC State’s Office of Partnerships.

Headquartered in Tokyo, Ricoh was founded 85 years ago and today hosts global operations reaching customers in 200 countries.

This post was originally published in NC State News.