3D Printing Industry asked 100 additive manufacturing leaders to identify how 3D printing will develop during the next ten years. In our article last week, we took a look at the near term trends in 3D printing to watch for 2020. This new article draws on insights from additive manufacturing experts across the globe to understand where our industry is heading.
Will AM herald the disruption of manufacturing as we know it? While major change is likely to be slow, with this longer time horizon, it may be useful to consider the role of governments in supporting new industries.
During this month’s AM Focus Automotive, we are mapping out the most accurate and up to date scenario for automotive additive manufacturing in final part production. We present an analysis of the latest progress made by each major automaker group and some of the key activities—either publicly disclosed or confirmed by reliable sources. Here’s a look at BMW additive manufacturing. In the previous episodes, we looked at Volkswagen, General Motors, Daimler Benz and Ford. Still upcopming: PSA, FCA and JLR.
The fifth Innovation Food Conference — iFood 2019 — will be held at Anuga in Cologne, Germany, in October. Suitable for food retailers, technologists and manufacturers, the conference aims to jointly work out approaches for the development of efficient value chains for sustainable and attractive products.
Speakers at the iFood conference will discuss the ecological, social and economic dimensions of sustainability, addressing issues such as ethics, animal welfare, resource efficiency, consumer health and food authenticity.
Presentations about digitalisation will encompass many topics pertaining to the food industry. The conference will question what digitalisation offers to the food industry in terms of transparency and traceability, and the role of artificial intelligence within the food industry. Experts will provide insights into the economic impacts and opportunities of digitalisation, alongside discussing topics such as blockchain.
3D printing of food is turning from pipe dream into commercial reality, as nutrition supplements firm Nourish3d is about to prove.
While the idea of 3D printed food might still seem in the realms of a sci-fi novel, the technology s very much present and already being deployed by, in particular, baking industry professionals for cake or pastry decoration.
At present, the technology is limited and relatively expensive, with the lowest cost of a 3D printer being around $1,000 (£784). Using extrusion, current 3D printers can only handle paste or puree ingredients, such as chocolate, cream or batter. However, the technology is beginning to gain traction, with users understanding how it can help to meet changing demands from consumers.
elix Printers has launched the Pro 3, L and XL platforms for industrial production applications to meet the changing needs of the industry.
The shift of the manufacturing workflow to incorporate additive manufacturing in many industrial sectors has led 3D printingmanufacturer, Felix Printers, to develop products and features to serve the changing needs of industry, paying careful attention to detail and listening to customers. The Pro 3, L and XL platforms for industrial production applications were launched end 2018. According to Felix Printers, Pro 3 integrates seamlessly into industrial workflows, be it in the office, workshop, laboratory or factory environment. The 3D printer produces optimised print results repeatably. The L and XL platforms are for greatly increased build volumes of up to 144 litres. Pro L is said to be able to build parts of up to 300 x 400 x 400 mm (11.8 x 15.75 x 15.75 in.), while Pro XL has a build chamber of 600 x 400 x 600 mm (23.62 x 15.75 x 23.62 in.), Felix explains.
According to the company, the larger systems incorporate highly engineered print chambers, which incorporate an enclosed warm zone and a cold zone, to ensure quality and reliability. The warm zone supports consistent temperature control during the build, which is particularly important when printing materials with a high shrinkage factor, such as ABS, carbon fiber or nylon. In contrast, the cool zone is where the electronics are housed, which prevent overheating and subsequent machine/build failure.
A feature in the March 2016 company magazine for Kongsberg Gruppen – one of Norway’s oldest and largest companies – delves into the future of 3D printing within the multi- faceted technology manufacturer.
The article focusses on the in- house 3D printing by the R&D team at Kongsberg Maritime. Using the now defunct 3D Systems Cube Pro, Kongsberg fit and form prototypes. In the article, Alf Pettersen, Technical Manager at Kongsberg Aerostructures reveals a reluctance to invest in a more industrial solution.
“3D printing has come a long way in terms of medical devices and prototypes, but mass production is still a problem. This is because of challenges relating to repetition and quality. It is not good enough in so many areas, particularly in the aviation industry, where there are extremely strict requirements governing quality and the qualification of methods.”
After many years in stealth mode, California-based VELO3D emerged in August 2018 with the release of its end-to-end Sapphire metal 3D printer. The industry took notice. The system, based on the company’s Intelligent Fusion technology, gained significant attention for its promise of support-free 3D printing and production capabilities.
Since then, VELO3D has kept up momentum, showcasing applications for its metal AM system in various industries and working with influential players in the AM and aerospace industries, such as Stratasys Direct and Boom Supersonic.
We recently had an in depth conversation with VELO3D’s Chief Customer Officer Richard Nieset about the company’s unique 3D printing technology as well as how it aims to disrupt the metal AM and broader manufacturing markets with its capabilities. If there is one key thing to take away from the conversation, it is that VELO3D is delivering on its promises and is confident in its ability to transform and unlock AM applications, especially in the aerospace and industrial sectors.
Michael Hollenbeck will show how Metal 3D printing will encourage mass customisation, where the constrained volume in a satellite can be filled with a high-performance antenna that conforms to the space around it and provides lower loss and higher performance.
Michael Hollenbeck, Chief Technology Officer of Optisys, Inc. will speak at Satellite 2019 about Metal 3D printing and how it can help build the smallest and lightest functional antennas in the industry.The presentation will cover how Metal 3D printing will usher in an era of mass customisation, where the constrained volume remaining in a satellite can be filled with a unique high-performance antenna that conforms to the space around it and provides a lower loss, higher performance solution than any competing alternative.
Between enabling profound new designs and upending the traditional supply chain, the unlimited potential with metal 3D printing will transform the manufacturing landscape. Indeed, the transformation has already begun. But, getting metal AM into production is taking a lot longer than many media pundits predicted. It’s even progressing much slower than many “in-the-know” industry insiders expected.
Why is mass adoption so slow with metal 3D printing, especially in production? It really boils down to one word: economics. If the economics work, the application moves forward into production. If not, it’s dead on arrival. The numbers need to work because when it comes to production competitive manufacturing, technologies come into play. Customers start to say things like, “Well, if I make a couple of modifications to the design I can use CNC machining or metal injection molding and save a huge amount on the production cost.”
The technology will revolutionize manufacturing, but how? United Technologies, GE and Honeywell are taking different approaches.
Like the cotton gin and the modern assembly line, 3D printing is the kind of breakthrough advancement that holds the promise to revolutionize manufacturing. The technology lets companies input designs into a printer the size of a small garden shed and have it spit out fully formed, usable products or parts – often at a savings of time, manpower and money.
This potential isn’t lost on industrial giants like General Electric Co., Honeywell International Inc. and United Technologies Corp.: if you can make a part cheaper, faster or better, that’s worth something. So all three companies are investing in the technology and using it to rethink the way they run their businesses. But they’re doing so in different and interesting ways.