Since its inception, 3D printing has gained momentum as one of the most progressive and efficient technologies that hold immense promise. Numerous industries have already adopted this trend and are making the most of what it has to offer.
From health to aeronautics, 3D printing has turned out to be advantageous in a variety of ways. With increased accessibility, consumerization of the 3D printing technology has been witness to a rapid rise.
The possibilities of 3D printing are endless, so is its growth. In fact, the 3D printing industry has been estimated to be worth over $21 billion by 2020. The benefits of 3D printing are enormous. Let’s take a look at some of the advantages in details.
3D printing technology utilizes the method of additive manufacturing to create products using raw materials that aren’t expensive. In addition to that, 3D printing reduces labor cost as well.
For example, last year, Shanghai-based WinSun company built 10 houses in 24 hours through the 3D printing process. They also printed a five-story apartment and a villa complete with decorative items both, inside and out. The good news is, the labour cost for this process was reduced by 50 – 80% than that of traditional methods.
Apart from that, with 3D printing, products can be manufactured onsite. This eliminates the shipping cost of materials.
Unlike traditional manufacturing methods which produce a lot of waste, 3D printing is an environment-friendly method of creating objects from scratch. In traditional manufacturing processes, the waste produced cannot be utilized anymore. However, 3D printing reduces this waste to a bare minimum, thus making the process of manufacturing more efficient.
3D printing has become almost synonymous with customisation. The 3D printing technology allows customers to personalise the products that they order just the way they want. From jewelry to food, anything a client wants can be customised.
With such improved scope of customisation, newer, intricate and innovative designs have surfaced that are quite complex. The efficiency of this technology lies with the fact that an infinite number of such complicated objects can be printed with extreme precision and accuracy. As a result, this provides enough scope for the usage of a combination of a variety of raw materials. From metals to plastics, anything can be utilised for the creation of the objects.
The good news is, 3D printers can print almost anything. This means that the possibilities are endless. Close to anything you can imagine can be printed.
With the consumerisation of 3D printers, the accessibility of 3D has increased. People can now print the products they want right from the comfort of their homes. An average consumer can print everyday objects like utensils, home furnishings etc. exactly the way they want without having to leave their homes.
All that needs to be done is download the blueprint of the object and print it out. It is as simple as that. This gives consumers not only immediate access but also more control over the products.
3D printed prototypes are quite popular. With large production projects, it is important to identify any mistakes that may arise at a later stage. These mistakes can be easily identified with prototypes. Prototypes provide the chance of finding faults in the design process which can be rectified by 3D architects way before the construction process is initiated.
Apart from that, prototypes are effective ways to showcase the final product to clients. The ability to show a 360-degree view of how the finished product will look like makes it a compelling presentation technique.
Compared to traditional manufacturing methods, 3D printing is a lot faster. The 3D printing technology facilitates printing of entire products in a few hours, whereas conventional manufacturing methods may take up to months or more.
In fact, the first 3D printed car, Strati by Local Motors was printed in just 40 hours approximately, which is quite unbelievable.
With so many benefits of 3D printing, it has already created a niche for itself in various industries. It also offers the advantage of testing ideas quickly and efficiently in order to identify what works and what doesn’t. Newer and improved additions are being made to this technology to refine it further and make it more relevant for all industries.