3D Printing Business – How Will 3D Printing Benefit Business and Where is 3D Printing Going?
Big businesses benefit as well, of course, from the improved efficiency of being able to print physical objects in complex shapes that would be considerably more expensive using traditional techniques.
“Because you can make things that were previously impossible — ducts for wiring and cables, for example — that makes engineering much more efficient,” Shapeways’ Weijmarhausen says. He points to the example of aircraft manufacturers such as Airbus, which has capitalized on the technology to make stronger, stiffer and cheaper parts for its aircraft.
As the efficiency of these techniques evolves, so does the bottom line for companies and consumers. Industry leaders see a future in which 3D printers become even more affordable, to the point where they will be accessible to anyone. “Mainstream adoption, like in homes, is where everybody believes we will get to,” Solidscape’s Esposito says. “Nobody knows when or how quickly it will be adopted but there are so many ways the technology will be used.”
The next big development in the 3D printing world being adoption of the machines in schools rather than homes. MakerBot has developed some curricula for teachers to integrate the technology in the classroom, to familiarize the next generation with the process.
“Imagine you’re 10 or 11 and have a machine that can make you anything; how does that change the scope of innovation in the U.S.?””It’s a great time to be alive, a great time to be somebody who’s creative.”