3D printing was originally a technology for creating prototypes, but this is changing rapidly. These days, many manufacturers produce entire products and end-use components through 3D printing or additive manufacturing. At Halo Technologies 3D Printing, we print anything from Yacht parts to 3d models of future buildings.
Still a little confused on what 3d printing is? Check out our What is 3D Printing article.
3D printing has found a number of uses in a wide range of fields and industries. From medical modeling and implantation to the aerospace component manufacturing industry. 3D printing has found uses in virtually all-major industries in several ways.
3D Printing in Manufacturing
Over the last few years, 3D printing has gained more exposure in the broader public. However, the technology has been in use for a couple of decades now. Manufacturing companies in particular have been using 3D printing for a long time in the design process for research purposes and prototyping.
There are numerous applications of 3D printing in several industries within the larger manufacturing industry. The use of 3D printers for such purposes is known as rapid prototyping, allowing companies to make models without putting out major costs. The applications of 3D printing have grown remarkably in recent years, and the technology has pervaded the aerospace and aviation industries, the automotive industry, and general industrial printing.
Aerospace and Aviation Industry
The growth in use of 3D printing techniques in the aviation and aerospace industries are derived from advances in the ability to use metal as an additive. Technological advancements in the metal additive manufacturing sector have enabled aerospace engineers to print components such as combustion chamber liners for spacecraft engines using selective laser melting. As of now, the first 3D printed jet engine parts have already been approved to fly by the FAA.
On-Demand Spacecraft Parts
Currently, the next space exploration vehicles contain over 50 3D printed parts, which are all made on earth. This drastically stretches the supply chain, but scientists are already investigating the potential of and viability of printing parts on-demand in space. Companies in the aerospace industry are currently conducting zero gravity tests to see how the technology can be applied on the international space station and enable astronauts to build parts and tools on the spot.
Complex Aircraft Parts
While components for smaller parts in aircraft engines are currently being developed, companies in the aviation industry are already experimenting with 3D printing in airplane wing design. One of the major airplane manufacturing companies is currently envisions the printing of an entire wing in the future. The use of three-dimensional printing is also expected to develop further in the development of testing prototypes. This demonstrates that the future capabilities of the technology for developing complex jet engine parts are immense.
The rapid pace for 3D printing in the medical industry is developing has specialists already utilizing 3D printing in more sophisticated ways. People across the planet are currently enjoying improved quality of medical care thanks to 3D prosthetics and implants. For more than 15 years now, biotechnology corporations and scholars have been tinkering with the potential of 3D printing in tissue engineering where body parts and organs can be created using inkjet techniques.
3D printing was traditionally used for creating prototypes, but this is changing rapidly and many manufacturers produce entire products through the technology. We will see this technology gain even more prominent use in a wide range of applications in the manufacturing, aerospace, medical, and aviation industries. Current research and development in the potential of 3D printing paints an amazingly bright future for applications of 3D printing.
At Halo Technologies, one of the premier 3D printing companies based in West Palm Beach, Florida, we are always exploring different ways of applying 3D printing to everyday challenges. Contact us about your next project and let our qualified team work with you.