The words 3D printing brings up a wide range of images, ranging from DIY boxes and plastic figures to the miracle machines that print new organs to extend the life of patients. We usually do not see things lying in the middle, like small printers lying around the house and real life objects that are made a bit better or cooler, all thanks to technological innovations.
However, these changes will come soon. Nowadays, we are seeing small 3D printers that are smaller than the breadbox, silent and extremely handy, printers that offer 24*7 support.
In the year 2015, we saw advancements made in the speed, quality and the abilities of the 3D printers. Though they have not yet come mainstream, it is inevitable that new technologies in 3D printing will allow producing products from prescription drugs to foods to new homes.
The year 2016 looks quite promising for the 3D printing industry. Let us take a look at the things we can remain on the lookout for in 2016.
More companies today are diving into 3D printing, attracting huge sales pitch. Several companies are in the process of developing or have already developed their own 3D printers. Multi Jet Fusion printers, supposed to print objects in different colours and much faster than the printers that are presently available in the market, are presently on its way.
Developing new products are quite a serious undertaking. They require resources in money and time, that often looms prohibitively over the creative process. The engineers and the designers need to consider not just the things they would like to achieve but also if their tools will be able to achieve them. 3D technology aids in getting rid of such tooling considerations to help products as well as minds perform like never before.
With the aid of 3D printing technology, it is now possible to complete an entire building within little time. Moreover, the flaws also get detected quite early in the process, thereby increasing the speed of the workflow.
Speed is the key here. The fast 3D printers refer to the machines that become a component of the manufacturing process rather than the machines that the designers and the engineers use for building or testing new parts. This is something that companies, both old as well as new can recognise. The manufacturers today know that speed is an integral component, pointing out "The faster they get, the more people will use them, which helps grow the market."
The look as well as the sound of instruments today can be as unique as the look and the sound of the musician playing it. Though the 3D printed musical instruments made the headlines right from the time it came into being, their range as well as popularity is expanding now.
3D printing allows the musicians to experiment as well as interact with art in a way, it was never before.
Composite Printing Using Different Materials
This has been one of the initiatives around 3D printed technology apart from improving the quality, throughput, range of materials as well as the size of the output. We cannot print multiple materials with the aid of extrusion technology. There are several companies that enable printing of plastic like nylon as well as fiberglass. These are products that are already available in the market.
Though, presently there aren't multiple materials in the market, several initiatives are being taken along this line.
Full Body 3D Scan
Though people are not yet cloning themselves, they are capacitated to make accurate replicas that can rival the handiwork at Madame Tussauds’.
A full body scanner including a rotating drum of cameras and lights are available today, sold off to supermarkets and malls. The device captures a scan in around 12 seconds, permitting people to hold poses like freezing midway. The 3D models are cleaned automatically and then send to be printed if the customer decides to take a mini self.
3D Printed Clothes
3D print in fashion is still an experimental area, often used for just showing the things that can be done. However, the clothes that you can wear are already making its presence.
Most buyers of 3D printed fashion opt for the simpler and the more useful products like sneakers that come with well-attuned strength levels.
The most exciting thing about 3D printing is advancements made in the domain of metal 3D printing where powdered 3D metal is taken and are then used to do an array of things ranging from prototyping to finished goods.