“This is one small step for man, one giant leap for man(ufacturing) kind”- Neil Armstrong revised by Lisa J. Kleinhandler
While 3D printing has been around for longer than many people realize, the technology gained a lot of traction and publicity this past year. When companies the likes of Lockheed Martin, Alcoa, Hewlett-Packard, and GE are incorporating 3D printing into their businesses, it’s time to pay attention. 3D printing is the more common term for the technology known as additive manufacturing. America Makes, or the National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute, defines 3D Printing as the process of making something by adding material in successive layers. 3D printing is a constantly growing technology, expanding into all markets including aerospace, automotive, health, medicine, defense, and even food. “There are many different technologies for additive manufacturing. Each is suited to different product applications and requirements. Some of the technologies have been used for rapid prototyping for decades, but new developments are enabling their use for actual production.” To learn more about additive manufacturing from the National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute, follow this link.
2014 was a big year for 3D printing, marked with many advances and milestones. NASA, together with Made in Space, 3D printed the first object in space – a faceplate with both organizations’ names. Since then there have been over 20 objects 3D printed at the International Space Station, including a ratchet that can be seen below.
The first ever 3d printed car, called the Strati created by Local Motors, made its debut at IMTS in September 2014. This amazing piece of technology is set to change the automotive manufacturing industry by dramatically cutting down on the time and cost that is put into manufacturing a car. According to the Department of Energy, additive manufacturing is predicted to reduce the amount of energy used in production by more than 50%. In addition to all of the amazing objects being manufactured through 3D printing, perhaps the most important creation is a new job market.The cost efficiency of 3D printing technology is not only creating jobs, but it’s bringing them back and keeping them on U.S. soil. Charts and Graphs: This Technology Could Have The Biggest Impact On American Jobs Since Offshoring by Business Insider Production of Parts for Final Products is Now 34.7% of the Market for Additive Manufacturing from Wohlers Associates For more information on 3D Printing in 2014 and what to look for in 2015, please visit our reports page and follow us on Twitter @FastenerNews. Visit our 3D Printing/Additive Manufacturing Trade Shows page to find out what shows are happening this year. Hashtags: #3DPrinting #3DP #AdditiveManufacturing #manufacturing #USmfg #technology #AmericaMakes #jobs3D Printing / Additive Manufacturing, News