It is no secret that all branches of the United States military have been keeping a close eye on 3D printing technology. With the variety of uses across all industries, 3D printing has proven its versatility. Besides the ongoing research in a number of directions, such as 3D printing of replacement bones, battle armor, and vehicle parts, the Navy has already successfully tested ballistic missiles containing 3D printed components.
According to Business Insider, new interest is being shown in the field recently, as many patents on the original technology are expiring, thereby allowing for competition that will result in better quality products at a much lower cost. The first major patents expired in 2009 allowing new printers capable of using metal, wood, and fabric to become more available.
The US military is already investing heavily into research to print uniforms, synthetic skin and food, said ISH Technology analyst Alex Chausovsky.
Air New Zealand is getting set to explore the innovative possibilities of 3D printing.
The Auckland-based carrier announced last week that the process could be ideal for cutting manufacturing costs and controlling replacement stock.
For the moment Air New Zealand, in collaboration with the Auckland University of Technology, has settled on producing cocktail trays for its business class passengers.
The technology typically uses a digital process to produce a completely integrated part-combination object as a single finished product by creating ‘layers’ of material.
Though hobbyists, researchers and manufacturers are all quite optimistic about the 3D printing revolution in the near future, Gartner has proven itself to be one of the most reliable sources out there when it comes to market growth. Their previous prediction that 10% of people in the developed world will own 3D printed products by 2019 is therefore quite promising. But as Gartner’s Research Director Morgan Eldred just revealed at the Gartner Symposium/ITxpo in Dubai, industrial 3D printing is also on the rise. Especially oil and gas companies are set to profit from the technology, it is revealed, and Gartner predicts that ten percent of all O&G companies will partially rely on 3D printing manufacturing by 2019.
Gartner, of course, is the world’s leading information technology research and market advisory company, and are known for their detailed and often correct interpretations of market mechanisms. With 3D printing quickly becoming a crucial innovative technology, it has been the subject of several specialized reports already, of which Impact of 3D Printing for Oil and Gas Industry IT Leaders is the latest. At the Gartner Symposium/ITxpo in Dubai (1-3 March 2016), Morgan Eldred also discusses the opportunities and challenges this technology brings to the oil and gas sector – one of the largest industries in the world.
The first time intellectual property attorney John Hornick saw a 3D printer at work, he thought it was a joke. It wasn’t until a friend at Johns Hopkins University convinced him that the tech was the real deal that Hornick took a deep dive into how 3D printing machines could change the world.
Hornick’s findings are collected in the new book, 3D Printing Will Rock the World, and below he tells Inverse exactly how most people may own a 3D printer by 2025, no matter how implausible that seems now.
The company’s Blade, the world’s first 3D-printed supercar, has 1/3 the emissions of an electric car, requires 1/50 of the factory capital cost, and has twice the power-to-weight ratio of a Bugatti Veyron.
The former CEO and co-founder of Coda Automotive, Kevin Czinger, believes his new venture, Divergent 3D, has the ability to “revolutionize” auto manufacturing, by ‘dematerializing’ and democratizing the process, which could radically decrease not only the amount of pollution directly related to manufacturing, but also reduce the cost and amount of materials needed for each vehicle.
The application scope of 3-D printing technology is currently restricted to the production of extremely low volume parts and production tooling. This is mainly due to the high costs of the machinery and raw materials, slow printing speeds and reduced levels of software optimization. Therefore, with a drop in material and machine prices, advanced software integration and faster printing, 3-D printing could potentially revolutionize automotive production, supply chain and the aftermarket.
New analysis from Frost & Sullivan, Executive Analysis of 3-D Printing in the Automotive Industry  (http://frost.ly/018 [http://frost.ly/018]), finds that the technology will generate $4.3 billion from the automotive industry by 2025 and achieve deeper penetration in automotive production and the aftermarket. As a result, 3D printing could offer substantial savings to manufacturers, suppliers and even consumers.
The futuristic hype over 3D printing has outshined applications that are already transforming the manufacturing world. While the media speculates about 3D printed guns, organs and food, firms are using 3D printers to overcome a less ‘sexy’ challenge: replacement parts for aging production lines.
In a typical factory, unplanned downtime is extremely expensive. In a survey conducted by Nielsen Research, automotive executives reported that downtime cost an average of $22,000 per minute — some respondents put the figure as high $50,000 per minute. Not surprisingly, most manufacturers invest in predictive maintenance and aim to replace worn down parts before they cause a breakdown.
Industry is, of course, completely centered on supply and demand. And while there are many facets to manufacturing and business, few areas are as fast-paced or as fickle as the fashion industry. Our simple, and often (ironically) unattractive vanity promotes an entire economy based on greed and speed–as well as seeing who can replicate and wear Kate Middleton’s latest navy-blue dress fast enough.
Most often focusing on want rather than need, the ‘fast fashion’ industry encompasses the complete opposite of originality or creativity, as it’s about getting copies of quality and runway fashion into stores like H&M at breakneck speed. And up until recently not much care was given to the how of making these piles of clothes, but more so to the how fast. As the horrors of sweatshops have come to light in one sensationalized story after another, consumers–especially the younger ones–are becoming more discerning–and concerned. The millennial generation is making it more and more clear that they would rather look for alternatives instead of having the trendy clothes on their backs made by someone suffering overseas and being paid pennies, if anything at all.
Current advances in 3D printing are making it an integral part of manufacturing, including electronics manufacturing. It can cut down processes from weeks to days and costs from thousands to hundreds. The 3D printed option is not only more efficient and economical, but actually better in terms of performance, as well as carbon footprint.
“We make your factory run better” is the tagline for the maintenance services offered by ATS.