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3D Printing Trends To Watch For In 2017

– MULTI-MATERIALS

Using a plastic filament has been the norm for 3D printing for quite some time now. Although most consumers are not too bothered by this limitation, printer manufacturers are working on allowing for multi-material support.

– More Organs Will Be Printed

As unusual as this concept may sound, don’t be surprised when the pharmaceutical sector shifts towards 3D printing specific organs. A new heart coming right out of the printer is not something to look forward to just yet, but scientists are experimenting with a 3D printed kidney. The bigger question is how the human body will respond to these strange substances and materials being introduced.

– Better Metals

Looking beyond the consumer-grade 3D printer materials, enterprises can stand to gain a lot from better metal printing solutions. Although 3D printing metal objects is already possible, even while achieving a high-quality output, the process is very expensive and somewhat limited to manufacturing smaller parts. Come 2017 and beyond; that situation is set to change for the better.

– More colors and multi colored

One of the main issues a lot of people had with 3D printing at an early stage is how all of the objects could only be printed in one color. That situation has come to change in 2016, as multicolored printing will make its way to the consumer market.

Need to learn about running a 3D Printing Business?

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The Best 3D Printing Forums, Discussion Groups and Communities – Best TED Talks on 3D Printing

3D Printing Book

The best 3D printing forums, discussion groups and communities

The rise of 3D printing has created a vibrant and fast-growing community of users. And this community of makers is also playing a big part in the development of 3D printing…

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Best TED Talks on 3D Printing

 

How To 3D Print Money

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3D Printing Trends- What About 3D Printing Jobs?

3d printed car

After years of figuring out what additive manufacturing—the new kid of industry—could and couldn’t do, 2016 seems to be when the technology finally started to settle in and become one of the gang. It’s gained worldwide acceptance and a feasible way to make many things, not just a few prototypes. The watershed moment may have been General Electrics acquisition of two European 3D printing companies for $1.4 billion. They didn’t buy all of Arcam, but tool a controlling stake.

GE Aviation says it will 3D-print more than 100,000 parts by 2020 to make lighter and more efficient engines, along with several other advantages.This should change a lot of the job landscape and enhance productivity.

What will happen in the sector in 2017? It will no doubt be a momentous year for manufacturers around the world, if even half of what President Donald Trump says he’ll accomplish comes to fruition when he starts the job on Jan. 20. From trade to new jobs, everything is up in the air.

Read more on the new equipment website.

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3D Printing Breaking Copyright? Do You Know 3D Printing Patent Laws?

3D Printing Copyright - Breaking The Law

Will 3D Printing Break Copyright?

3D Printing: The hype is real! Engineers, Designers, and everyday consumers are using this new fabrication process to conceptualize and create things that were once impossible.

But what does this mean for the future of manufacturing and where do these 3D prints fall on the thin line between copyright infringement and fair use?

Is it possible that 3D printing will do for objects what MP3s did for music; by once again radically transforming the way we look at copyright?

In this episode of Idea Channel, we sit down with Michael Weinberg, head of litigation at Shapeways, a 3D printing company located in New York to get an inside look at their facilities and discuss the how copyright is handled in the 3D printing world.

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3D Printing Trends – 4 Trends In 3D Printing To Watch

1. Consumer Market Being Beaten Up

At the consumer electronics show, there was an endless sea of companies offering inexpensive consumer models, each looking identical to the next. It appears they may be late to the party. 2015 marked the end of the 3D printing consumer market hype cycle with Stratasys (the acquirer of MakerBot) taking massive write-offs and 3D Systems shutting down its entire consumer unit in December. With prospects dimming for the short-term consumer market, attention will quickly turn toward 3D printing’s area of greatest promise — industrial applications. Consumer marketing needed to back up the “cool” with substance.

2. Pushing The Limits Of Technology

While GE and Ford have touted their rapid progress with 3D printing, many others are achieving some incredible accomplishments behind closed doors. Look for exciting announcements about exotic new 3D printing materials such as glass and graphene and 3D printed objects that shatter the previous limitations on shape and size. These “big area” 3D printing machines hold the promise of manufacturing an entire airplane wing structure or blades for massive wind turbines in a single print. Low labor cost, easy prediction of output and portability in manufacturing.

3. Outsourced 3D Printing Gains Share

Most internal design shops have access to an in-house “pro-sumer” 3D printer. But despite advances in the technology, these printers remain difficult to use, often result in print errors, and are subject to traffic jams when everyone wants to print something at the same time. As the speed and sophistication of external providers has increased dramatically, with some now guaranteeing 24-hour production/delivery, many engineers and designers are ditching their internal printers in favor of a external service providers. These “service bureaus” will be in greater demand and have greater sophisitication.

4. Virtual Inventory Becomes Real

While some still look upon 3D printing as a niche technology, no one doubts how aggressively companies are pursuing cost savings, such as reducing expensive and wasteful physical inventories. Shifting physical inventory to virtual inventory, which allows you to generate parts on-demand when and where you need them, is shaping up to be a major part of the solution. This will decrease costs, warehouse space and dependance on vendors.

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3D Printing Acquisitions – 3D Printing With Metal

Metal 3D Printing is now the new battle within the aerospace and automotive sectors. Consider that with the acquisition, GE, a major manufacturer of aircraft and aircraft engines controls TWO of the very few 3D metal printing companies; Arcam and SLM.

This is important because in recent years these two industries in particular have discovered ways of using metal 3D printing technologies in very profitable ways. In fact, it may be a defacto standard requirement for future products in these industries.

Thus, GE (and likely others in this area) feel they need to secure the supply of metal 3D printing equipment and associated powdered metals. That’s what they’ve done here: acquired two metal 3D printing companies, each with a slightly different process to cover off a wider range of industrial needs. As a bonus, Arcam also operates a major production facility for powdered metal material in Canada.

There’s now no fear from GE that these companies might shut down, because they own them. But what happens to the 3D Printing competitors? Will this mean a that all boats will rise on this tide of metal 3D Printing?

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Will The 3D Printing Industry Double?

According to Gartner, nearly 456,000 3D printers will be shipped globally by the end of the year, doubling the 219,000 units that were shipped last year.

The global 3D printer market is booming, with the number of units shipped in 2020 estimated to reach more than 6.7 million, according to Gartner’s forecast.

 3D printing was once a niche market, with the technology primarily being used for prototyping.

But over the last decade, more and more uses have come to market, especially in the healthcare and manufacturing industries. For example, last month researchers at Northwestern University developed a new 3D-printable synthetic bone that could help transform major surgery. This is not to mention consumer use and use by large outlet stores as well.

“3D-printed personalized medical devices — hearing aids, dental implants and braces, and prosthetic limbs — are more common than many people know. So, too, are the uses of 3D printing to produce not only prototypes and finished goods, but also the tools, jigs and fixtures that are then used to make something else,” the Gartner report states.

Read the Full Article

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3D Printing Trends – What Is The Fastest Growing Segment?

3D printing industry remains highly fragmented across different printers, materials, and software. This fragmentation in the 3D industry will be a catalyst for growth, as no single company controls the majority of the market, according to The Information Network’s report The Information Network.

There are nearly 200 printer suppliers described in the report with products on the market, and an average of 1.4 different printers per supplier. This does not count home-made 3D printers that can be built in one day for less than $200.

The large market for FFF printers has cultivated another business that is further fragmenting the 3D printing market – materials. Materials represented 19.4% of the 3D printing industry in 2013, which in our analysis includes materials, printers, service bureaus, and spare parts. In the report, we note that materials will be the fastest growing sector of the industry, representing a 22.1% share in 2020. This would include 3D Printing Plastics.

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3D Printing Trade Association News – What Does The 3D Printing Purchases By GE Mean For The 3D Printing Industry?

General Electric Co. announced plans to acquire two suppliers of additive manufacturing equipment, Arcam AB and SLM Solutions Group AG, for $1.4 billion. GE expects Arcam and SLM to bolster its existing material science and additive manufacturing capabilities. Each acquisition is structured as a public tender offer for all of the outstanding shares of stock of each company.

Arcam AB, based in Mölndal, Sweden, invented the electron beam melting machine for metal-based additive manufacturing, and also produces advanced metal powders. Arcam generated $68 million in revenues in 2015 with approximately 285 employees.

SLM Solutions Group, based in Lübeck, Germany, produces laser machines for metal-based additive manufacturing. SLM generated $74 million in revenues in 2015 with 260 employees.

So what does this all mean for the 3D Printing Industry?

Does this once again show his multiples paid? If you add the revenue together, you get $142,000 in total revenues for the two targets and GE is paying 10x. But both firms do have great technology and more importantly, revenue.

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3D Printing Industry Association Looks At Formlabs Connection With Brad Feld

Autodesk, The 3D design software giant is using the investment as an opportunity to build a partnership with Formlabs, a deal that will develop collaborative software and marketing between the two companies — though specifics on what all of that will mean are still forthcoming. Autodesk is a pioneer in 3D Printing, and also an investor.

Autodesk CEO Carl Bass, quoted in today’s announcement: “Formlabs has brought a lot of innovation and great execution to the desktop 3D printing market, and Autodesk is excited to invest in the company’s future. But even more importantly, we’re eager to work together to improve digital design and manufacturing for product designers everywhere.” Autodesk is one of the multi billion dollar firms invested in 3D Printing.

The latest round of funding also means that Foundry Group co-founder Brad Feld, who funded Maker Bot which was acquired, will be joining Formlabs’ board. “There has been an enormous void for a new market leader in 3D printing,” Feld told TechCrunch ahead of the announcement. “It’s evident Formlabs has emerged as the leader in desktop 3D printing.”

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