What Are The Detailed Advantages And Disadvantages Of 3D Printing? How To Develop The 3D Industry

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What Are The Detailed Advantages And Disadvantages Of 3D Printing? How To Develop The 3D Industry

3D printing industry

Detailed advantages and disadvantages of 3D printing

Detailed advantages of 3D printing

  1. Reduce the complexity of product manufacturing

Unlike traditional manufacturing that uses molds, turning and milling and other mechanical processing methods to shape and cut raw materials to finally produce products, 3D printing converts three-dimensional entities into several two-dimensional planes, and produces by processing materials and superimposing them layer by layer. , Which greatly reduces the complexity of manufacturing.

  1. Expand the scope of manufacturing

This digital manufacturing mode does not require complicated processes, large machine tools, or a lot of manpower. Parts of any shape can be generated directly from computer graphics data, so that manufacturing can be extended to a wider range and any shape can be manufactured.

  1. Shorten manufacturing time and improve efficiency

It usually takes several hours to several days to manufacture a model by traditional methods, depends on the size and complexity of the model, while the use of 3D printing technology can shorten the time to several hours. Of course, this is also determined by the performance of the printer and the model, also it depends on size and complexity.

  1. Reduce the process of product manufacturing

The net shape forming of the first piece is practiced, so that the amount of auxiliary processing in the later stage is greatly reduced, and the data leakage and time span of outsourcing processing are avoided. It is especially suitable for some high confidentiality industries, such as military industry and nuclear power.

  1. Promptproduction andmeet the individual needs of customers

3D printers can print on demand, and Prompt production reduces the company’s physical inventory. Companies can use 3D printers to create special or customized products to meet customer needs according to customer orders.

  1. Develop more colorful products

Traditional manufacturing techniques and craftsmen have limited product shapes, and the ability to make shapes is limited by the tools used. 3D printers can break through these limitations, open up a huge design space, and even make shapes that may only exist in nature.

  1. Improve the utilization efficiency of raw materials

Compared with traditional metal manufacturing technology, 3D printers produce fewer by-products when manufacturing metal. With the advancement of printing materials, “net shape” manufacturing may become a more environmentally friendly processing method.

  1. Improve the accuracy of the product

Scanning technology and 3D printing technology will jointly improve the resolution of the form conversion between the physical world and the digital world. We can scan, edit and copy physical objects, create accurate copies or optimize the original.

Detailed disadvantages of 3D printing

  1. 3D products are difficult to copy in batches

3D printing is unique in personalized and even small-scale production, but it cannot be achieved in mass production.

  1. The production process is relatively complicated

Especially for products with complex structures,  need to correct various structure information and collect printing equipment.

  1. Material breakthrough

3D printing can be applied to many scenarios, but the materials, printing process, and technology have no advantages compared with traditional manufacturing processes. These require better collaboration and advancement in the industry.

  1. Higher cost

Non-reproducibility is also one of the important reasons for the increase in cost. Technical standards and policy systems are not perfect, education and training systems are in urgent need of strengthening, and there is a lack of professional talents.

  1. Poor practicality

For some products, only shells or prototypes can be printed, and cannot have all the functions like prototypes made from CNC machining.

As a rapid prototyping machine, 3D printing is used to complete the lowest-level general-purpose part of various manufacturing projects. The result of this is that these machines can do many things, but very few do well. This is not a dilemma caused by special materials or too advanced and complicated controls. And what really restricts the innovation of 3D printing technology is the way we look at these technologies: we only regard it as a single component manufacturing, without systemicity.

3D printing product 1

Problems in the development of 3D printing industry

At present, scientific research institutions and enterprises engaged in the research and development of 3D printing technology are “small and fragmented, fighting each other”, and the industrialization of 3D printing still needs a long process. The industry as a whole lacks innovation, and R&D is concentrated on equipment, but materials and software cannot keep up with the formation of a complete set. The existence of shortcomings restricts the entire industry from advancing side by side and further development.

  1. The degree of industrial scale is not high

Most of the 3D printing technology still stays in the laboratories of universities and scientific research institutions, and the scale of enterprises is generally small; and the 3D printing technology is mainly concentrated in equipment manufacturing, and the material manufacturing and software design are not yet complete.

  1. The technological innovation system is not sound

Innovative resources are relatively fragmented, and public service platforms such as industry standards, inspection and testing, and R&D are lacking, and a technological innovation system that combines production, education, research and application has not been established.

  1. Industrial management urgently needs to be strengthened

The development of the 3D printing industry requires a complete supplier and service provider system and market service platform. It is necessary to establish relevant associations to manage, supervise and even make overall plans for industrial development.

  1. The education and training system urgently needs to be strengthened

In the teaching curriculum system of engineering disciplines such as machinery, materials, and information technology, there is a lack of compulsory links related to 3D printing. 3D printing remains at the level of extracurricular interest research of some students.

3D printing technology is not to replace and challenge traditional manufacturing technology, but to supplement and innovate existing production models, supply models, and business models through integration with traditional manufacturing. With the maturity of 3D printing technology and the improvement of software systems, seamless integration will be achieved in all aspects of the current production system such as design, production process control, post-processing, etc., to promote the integration of 3D printing into the existing production system and achieve large-scale applications.

3D printing product 2

Picture of Author: Mose Li

Author: Mose Li

Director of Project Engineering at 3Q Machining

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