3D printing is a process that utilises computer-aided design, or CAD, in order to create objects layer by layer. 3D printing is usually used in the manufacturing and automotive industries where the tools and parts are made utilising 3D printers.
As the abilities of 3D printing continue to increase, so does its value. By 2029, the 3D printing industry is projected to reach a value of $84 billion. This growth means that we are bound to interact with products — and even homes and buildings — made with 3D printing.
From Hand-Made Prototypes To Rapid Prototyping
Before a time where there were such things as computer-aided design (CAD) and lasers as well as models and prototypes there were painstakingly carved from wood or stuck together from little pieces of card or plastic. These could take days or even weeks to make and usually cost a fortune.
Having changes or alterations made was difficult and time-consuming, particularly if an outside model-making company was being utilised, and that could discourage designers from making improvements or taking last-minute comments onboard: “It’s far too late!”
With the advent of better technology, an idea called rapid prototyping (RP) grew up in the 1980s as a solution to this challenge: it means producing models and prototypes using more automated methods, often in hours or days as opposed to the weeks that traditional prototyping used to takepreviously. 3D printing is a reasonable extension of this idea where product designers make their own rapid prototypes, in hours, utilising sophisticated machines similar to inkjet printers.
What Are 3D Printers?
In short, 3D printers utilise CAD to create 3D objects from a number of different of materials, such as molten plastic or powders. 3D printers can come in a wide range of shapes and sizes that range from equipment that can fit on a desk to make playing online blackjack real money games more comfortable to massive construction models utilised in the making of 3D-printed houses.
There are three main kinds of 3D printers and each utilisesa slightly different method:
- Stereolithographic, or SLA printers, which are equipped with a laser that forms liquid resin into plastic.
- Selective laser sintering, or SLS printers, are equipped with a laser which sinters particles of polymer powder into structure that is already solid.
- Fused deposition modelling, or FDM printers, are the most common types of 3D printers. These printers will release thermoplastic filaments that are melted via a hot nozzle in order to form a thing layer by layer.
3D printers aren’t like those weird and wonderful boxes in sci-fi shows. Rather, the printers — which act fairly similarly to traditional 2D inkjet printers — utilise a layering method to create the desired object. They work from the ground up and then pile on layer after layer until the object looks exactly like it was planned to.
Why Are 3D Printers Important For The Future?
The suppleness, accuracy and speed of 3D printers make them anencouraging tool for the future of manufacturing. Today, many 3D printers are utilised for what is called rapid prototyping. This speeds up the manufacturing process as it allows for quicker prototypes to be developed, ensuring products get to market far faster.