“3D Printing” is a term you may or may not have heard of. But in a few short years time, you’ll be hearing it so frequently it will become synonymous with your everyday shopping needs. Just “print it” will be used in everyday language, where all desirable objects are instantaneously generated at the click of the button.
The Basic Concept
If it’s the first time you’ve heard of 3D printing, let us imagine that it is similar to a normal desktop printer like your accustomed to. But hence the name, it can print objects of a 3D physical nature than simply ink onto paper. This ‘3D object’ is carefully printed in layers, through incremental steps of resolution to form over time a 3D version. Much like stacking sheets of paper on top of each of slightly different sizes to say form a sphere.
Most printed objects are printed in a plastic material. This special type of plastic is stored on a spool in the printer and fed into like a glue gun we might be familiar from using at at school. The plastic is similarly heated into a liquid form through a moveable printer head to become moldable. Once it exits the head it rapidly cools as a solid to take shape. This type of layered “additive manufacturing” which it’s known by is currently the leading option for most 3D printers, albeit not the only method. Other techniques play on the process but the concept of building up in layers maintains.
Don’t think for a second that the current offering is all it’s going to amount to. No, the technology is rapidly advancing year on year and what we see today is at the very, very, early stages of it’s life cycle.
You might often see current examples of printed models being that of assorted plastic tat and undesirable cheap looking vases. However, don’t let this cloud the potential. We’re still in testing phase, where the early adopters are playing around and developing materials and technologies.
Depending on the type of 3D printer will
jewellery, fashion, handbags.
Watch – Consider objects whereby you purchase the mechanical electronic intricate part and then simply print the ‘design’ of your watch to house the insides.
Why Will it be the next industrial revolution?
Commerical 3D Printing