Is 3D Printing An Opportunity Or A Threat?

3d_Printing pros and consScientists and engineers are excited about 3D printing. It’s a breakthrough in the sense that it could be used to create costly things at a low cost, thus lowering the cost of manufacturing. The benefits should flow down to the end user because medical expenses or technical gadgets could become more affordable. However, live anything new, there are two sides to this too.

To begin with, 3D printing was being used by some engineers and technical experts since the 1980s. However, it has received hype only recently. The availability of 3D printers at cost-effective prices has allowed people to explore the benefits of this technology. Even US President Barack Obama spoke about it in one of his speeches. He said, “(3D printing) …has the potential to revolutionize the way we make almost anything.”

Reducing the complexity of medical science

With more viable and cost-effective 3D printing solutions coming to the market, it is expected that the benefits of this technology will spread to almost every field in the near future. Medical science and healthcare are expected to benefit significantly from this technology. Reports suggest that researchers are now  busy exploring the possibility of replacing complex human organs with 3D printed objects.

Some researchers at Princeton University have even printed a replica of the outer ear using silver nano particles, human cells and hydrogel. Therefore, it will not be wrong to expect that the new technology will bring some breakthrough changes in the medical stream.

Also known as additive manufacturing, 3D printing can also make a great difference to the lives of automotive engineers and industrial developers. They will be able to visualize the model or prototype of the product they manufacture, resulting in greater accuracy.


Also Read: The Most Fascinating 3D Printing Technologies:Fused Deposition vs Selective Laser Sintering 

Creative professionals are worried sick

Those who are working in the creative fields are worried about what 3D printing would do to their business. It is already being expected that the retail and sports sectors could also enjoy some significant changes if 3D printing becomes a more viable option in the coming times.

However, designers are worried that this technology could sound the death knell for creativity. Kayne West spoke about it on the show Keeping Up With The Kardashians,  “This is what I’m afraid of–because the Internet destroyed the music industry and now, this is what we’re afraid of right now with the textile industry.” He added, “There will come a time when people are making their shoes at home.”

Tell us what you think about this technology. Would it cause more harm than good? Would it be good to have a check on 3D printing practices?

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The Most Fascinating 3D Printing Technologies:Fused Deposition vs Selective Laser Sintering

Technology is changing faces day by day. As you are aware, 3D printing was not at everyone’s reach previously, but now more versatile and affordable printers have come up and this technology in now changing ways for many industries. MakerBot was the first real revolution in 3D printing technologies, putting forth several customized solutions.

 MakerBot Replicator 2 is the latest one in this arena, which helps you transform big objects to a miniscule size of about 410 cubic inches. It came to the market in year 2012 and was meant for the desktops of creators, engineers, or researchers. The prominent technologies now at use in 3D printing are;

 Fused deposition modeling – In this, the printers will be melting a filament of plastic and deposit it in layers to fill up the model. MakerBot uses this technology with two types of plastics as ABS and PLA.

Selective laser sintering – Laser is used to sinter a powdered metal by binding it together and creating a much solid structure. After each layer is sintered, the structure is getting dropped and the next layer is getting built on this base.

Stereolithography – In this, laser is used to cure resin and make a prototype of one layer at a time.

Not just in terms of industries, but 3D printing is bringing in a bit revolution in the medical research and healthcare sectors too. Being still at its infancy stage, this technology got a huge potential with more possibilities in future.

 … Read the rest

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