The capabilities of 3-D printing hardware are evolving rapidly. These machines the begin by printing simple plastic items can now handle a range of materials from titanium to organic materials like human cartilage. Not only does this technology allow for a spectrum of materials but allow for production of fully functional components including LED’s and other electronics. The ability to create complex items with mechanical and electronic components will make 3-D printers a viable alternative to standard manufacturing.
The technology is rapidly improving and costs are decreasing. Larger and more complex components, increased precision , and higher speeds is just the tip of this iceberg ready to sink the manufacturing economy. In my opinion it is not a matter of if 3-D printers will become a staple in every house but when. Just like how the personal computer invaded in the 1990’s, 3-D printers will rock the foundation of business.
Expect 3-D printing to:
- Change the design, production and logistics of products
- Influence manufacturing strategies
- Become highly profitable
- Change business models to maximize product design revenue
- Quickly and continuously improve capabilities
- Make many manufacturing facilities obsolete
3-D printers still have many markets to profit from before entering our homes. From a historical perspective, 3-D printing has a clear path through corporate America. Just as computers made their way from research to business, 3-D printing will replace many conventional manufacturing processes. They will eliminate the need for specialized machinery, they will reduce development time, and reduce the waste of raw materials. Research suggests that 3-D printing, also known as additive manufacturing could reach $1/2 Trillion by 2025.
Here is short video that briefly speaks on unique materials and how in combination with 3-D printing will change the manufacturing landscape