3D printing and the addictive manufacturing is known as the process of creating three-dimensional objects. Various types of materials are being used in the process of building layers of materials by computer control system and these materials could be of plastic, metal, concrete, etc. Addictive manufacturing is being used to produce various types of prototypes as this is fastest growing sector. Using 3D printing technology, various big sectors such as energy, machinery development, health, etc. have developed their designs. Under this report, 3D printing’s usage in the manufacturing industries as well as in the other industries will be discussed. In the next phase of the report, importance of the addictive and 3D printing technology will be discussed and along with this, its impact over the traditional manufacturing will also be discussed.
Addictive Manufacturing (AM)
Manufacturing is the crucial element of the world and it has great impact over the industrial revolution and due to this in the traditional period of time, world enjoyed the great success in the industrial sector. The manufacturing is the terms derived from France language and it means as made by hand. After adaptation of the advanced technologies in the manufacturing process, method of forming, molding, etc. have become an easy and p
roductive task. Using this technology for manufacturing process, subtraction of the materials is being done from various work pieces. This process is also known as the subtracting method of manufacturing (Bijker, et. al., 2012).
Various layers are being added in the 3D printing process to form an object. Apart from performing the activities of molding and cutting to produce a product, cross-sectional layer is being used in the 3D printing process. Addictive manufacturing and the 3D printing are linked towards each other. In the process of 3D printing, model is being created for a particular object and it is done by the help of computer through scanning the object. Then the function of multi-layer operation starts. Afterwards, the design is being sent to the Addictive Machine for developing the model of the particular design (Campbell, et. al., 2011).
High or Low volume production
The suitability of the 3D printing technology is considered as the low volume production. AM machines were first built up to produce the designs of the models created by 3D printing technology. Furthermore, it has been used for high volume as well as by industries for genuine production. Low and medium level business enterprises use 3D printing technology in order to design and develop adequate type of designs as it also allows flexibility, ease in assembling process, etc. Apart from this, it is the major source through which small manufacturer could turn their production activities at low cost (Conner, et. al., 2014).
Injection molding was the biggest process used in the traditional times at huge level for the purpose of manufacturing. With the introduction of the 3D technology in the manufacturing industry, small level enterprises have got the ease in their manufacturing process as this is the best resource through which small volume products can be produced at low prices and it has created a big impact over the manufacturing industry. While in the traditional times, low rates could be available only when manufacturer opts for high volume production and this is the main situation arises in the plastic products. While, in terms of low production, injecting molding becomes the most expensive process. The process of 3D printing is friendly towards the environment as no such heavy machineries are being used in the production activities. Combination of the 3D printing technology as well as of the Addictive Machinery, are quite effective and efficient as 3D printing saves the wastages while AM technology decreases the energy usage as well as it leads to the reduction in the energy cost for the companies (Curran, 2016).
While reviewing the industries at global level, it was observed that 3D printing’s usage is found in various big industries in order to produce small volume products. For instance, Formula-one car’s special parts are being produced using AM technology through which it enhances the performance of the formula-one cars. Along with the automobile industry, technology is also being used in the aerospace industry and there this is used to produce environmental control system duct on F-18 in the aircrafts. This technology has spread its wings in the industries and it has also been used for producing braces for people in the custom orthodontics sector. For the purpose of producing customised braces for the people, 3D printing technology can also be used (Gebler, Uiterkamp & Visser, 2014).
Valuable Situations for 3D Printing
3D Printing technology is the technique which is adopted by most of the companies in order to ease their working procedures, to enhance the productivity, to decrease the energy cost as well as to decrease the waste production. In recent times, this technology is being used for consumer applications for producing hearing aid machines. More than ten million people are using this technology and involvement of 3D printing technology is 90% in the production of hearing aid machines. This technology could also be used in the formation of the prosthetic arms and legs. This is quite crucial process because the person who does not have a leg or an arm since the birth or has lost in accidents, using this technology, that person would be able to use the artificial arm of leg at cheaper cost (Gross, et. al., 2014).
Apart from this, there are certain benefits regarding this technology which states that organizations could produce complex products using this technology which is quite impossible otherwise 3D printing technology. For instance, internal cooling channels could only be produced with the help of AM technology and production of these devices is not possible through any other technology. With the help of this technology, complex production activities becomes quite easy as well as operating this technology is not a major task and any person with adequate guidance and training can be able to operate it fully. Apart from this, corporations have achieved those results which are not possible in the manual process of the working. The technology of AM is so impressive and it is operated through computer assistance in order to meet the standards developed by the organization (Leigh, et. al., 2012).
Forecast for 3D Printing Technology
Combination of 3D printing technology and the AM has brought the biggest revolution in the manufacturing industry. This has eliminated the usage of labourers for the process of complex production activities and the same results are being expected in the future years. And it can be reviewed from the past performance of these technologies in the manufacturing industries. As per the cover story of Economist in 2011, if this technology will be used in future years for the production activities and regular amendments have been made in the technology, it would decrease the cost of the production at the lowest level. This will enhance the benefits for consumers as they will get the products at lowest prices as well as the revenues, demand and the profitability for the organizations will also be enhanced (Mellor, Hao & Zhang, 2014).
According to the article “The Guardian” by Dredge (2014), 3D printing technology has provided a unique method to the industries in terms of the production activities. This technology does not require special treatment, training, etc. hence; it results in the easiest technology which can boosts up the performances of the corporations. This technology does not require adequate handling, maintenance, etc. Most of the corporations across the globe have shifted their working procedures on the 3D printing technology in order to meet with the customer’s expectations as well as for enhancing the revenues for the organization (Mironov, et. al., 2008).
Impact of 3D printing technology
3D printing and the AM technology has influenced the traditional techniques of manufacturing procedures as well as it has replaced various traditional techniques of production. Using additive manufacturing process helps the organization to produce the products as per the consumer’s expectations which also results in the formation of the positive image for the organization in the consumer’s mind-sets. Various big industries such as automobile, aerospace, etc. are using these technologies in order to produce those goods which are quite impossible with other techniques (Petrick & Simpson, 2013).
Indian and Chinese markets are still using obsolete techniques in their industries which could be replaced by the 3D printing technology. This will help these two markets for decreasing their cost of the production as well as the imports and the outsourcing cost will also be saved because this technology is capable enough to produce all types of products. This technology is environmental friendly as well as its impact over the production activities will be quite high. With the effect of the adaptation of these technologies, number of factories will be reduced as this technology is capable enough to produce unique products at one place.
Recommendations and Conclusion:
Reviewing the above techniques of production and for enhancing the productivity of the industries with the help of modern technology, it can be recommended that this technology should be promoted in an appropriate manner so that more awareness regarding the technology could be spread amongst the industries. As this technology has the capability to mould the production activities in an ease manner and with reduction of wastes as well as energy cost of the production. Promotional campaign should be used in order to promote this technology in the industries across the globe.
From the aforesaid discussion, it can be concluded that 3D printing technology as well as the addictive manufacturing process are capable enough to produce adequate types of products at low rates and with low extraction of pollution. In order to meet with the expectations, additive manufacturing process, and usage of the technology in high and low volume production capabilities, crucial situations and the role of AM in the future of manufacturing process were discussed for enhancing the production activities. Furthermore, impact of the 3D printing technology was also discussed for evaluating the adequate amount of results.
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