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IMPERIAL, Pa. (AP) – General Electric plans to build a $32 million facility near Pittsburgh International Airport to develop three-dimensional printing and other high-tech manufacturing processes.

The company plans to employ 50 high-tech engineers at the Findlay Township facility, which will break ground in March and should be completed in September.

Three-dimensional, or 3-D, printing refers to a process in which digital images are fed into a machine which can “print” – or make – products that correspond to the image out of plastic, metals or other materials. General Electric is already using the process to create fuel nozzles for new jet engine models it is producing.

GE chose the location because Carnegie Mellon University, the University of Pittsburgh and Penn State University all have research programs devoted to 3-D printing and other advanced manufacturing technologies.

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