SoloPoint Insights

5 Ways 3D Printing Is Changing Manufacturing

Design World Online, a great website for engineering news, recently featured a presentation made by Columbia University Professor Hod Lipson on how 3D Printing can impact and change manufacturing as we know it. Here are some of the reasons Leslie Langnau, Design World Editor, highlighted from Professor Lipson’s presentation:

1. No assembly required
3D printing enables designers to develop and build whole assemblies, such as a clock with all the gears already put into it, or a bearing with the balls already inside, or, very soon, parts with the electronics printed in. This capability reduces the need for a manufacturing assembly line, or at least eliminates many of the assembly stations, which saves cost.

2. Reduce or eliminate lead time
You can hold your design in your hands within hours, instead of days or weeks. Then you can alter and change it, and iterate the design as many times as you want until it’s perfect.

3. Design constraints are only limited by your imagination
Parts within parts. Parts with various geometry holes in them, or parts with amazing geometry shapes. You can make things that were impossible just a few years ago. Throw out convention! Challenge your imagination.

4. Compact, portable technology
Some 3D printers are as large as machining centers. But many are about the size of a large piece of a luggage. If you have a power source, you can build your designs nearly anywhere.

5. An increasing array of material choices
More vendors are offering thousands of colors in their build materials. In addition, vendors are exploring with textures and durometers. You can create blends of materials into meta materials. These meta materials will have properties not possible with traditional metals or plastics. This is just the beginning.

With 3D Printing becoming more prolific in the world of manufacturing, SoloPoint Solutions continues to monitor its growth and how it can potentially affect the engineering job market. To learn of our mechanical, manufacturing and electrical engineering job openings, call us today at (408)246-5945 or at (714)708-3639.

To read more on this article, visit Design World Online.