3D printing industry has grown immensely over the past few years. However, just like other emerging industries, there are challenges that this industry needs to overcome. If the 3D printing industry can get through these obstacles, it will become even more popular. Pricewaterhouse Coopers has recently carried out a study and released a report which shows three major challenges that the businesses face with this technology. Let us have a look at these three problems.
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- Print Speed
3D printer manufacturers are faced with a common problem- that of the speed of printing. As per PwC, efficiency can be improved significantly by combining design innovations with high quality components and using them during the manufacturing process.
Most of the 3D printers that are used, function in the Cartesian plane, where the movement gets restricted to the vertical and horizontal direction. The time necessary for printing objects is increased and chances of an error also increases. This problem can be solved with delta planes, where the materials are spread over a broader area and the speed is improved. By increasing the number of printheads that are used in the printers, the speed problem can also be solved.
- Material Mixing
3D printing entails the use of different types of materials like wood, plastic, etc. to create various types of objects. However, till now, it is difficult to find a printer which can mix these different materials to 3D print a single object.
According to PwC, in the future, inkjet 3D printers will be used the most for material mixing. The printer is used for different technologies of 3D printing like Selective Laser Sintering. In this technology several materials within a particular range can be distributed as a powdered “base”.
- Finished Products
As per an executive at Autodesk, some of the 3D printers have around 70 percent failure rate. As a result, the most popular uses for 3D printing are limited to prototyping finished products. The lead time for overall manufacturing might be reduced with the technology, but in the lifecycle of a product, rapid prototyping plays a very small part.
By focusing more on the development of electronic circuitry, this problem might be solved.
So, if the 3D printer manufacturers are able to overcome these problems, the 3D printing industry is bound to become more popular in the coming years.
What do you think?
Do you think 3D printing industry will flourish by overcoming these obstacles? Do you think there might be other areas which could cause a problem for this industry? Share your thoughts in the comments below.
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