If you were even a fan of sci-fi growing up you must have encountered the machines that were tech forward enough to be able to produce almost anything. Forward to present day, and that is precisely what we have got with 3D printing. With the kind of technology that we have today, we can think of an object, draw up its design and print it out to be exactly what we want it to be. The technology has progressed an incredible amount, but there are of course still things that we need to implement in order to make 3D printing a lot more efficientWhere are we now?
As it stands, 3D printing is yet to see a commercial application across spectrums. Not all industries have begun implementing this kind of technology for their needs. However, there are a few sectors that have tried out this process of printing to be able to improve the efficiency of the work that they do and to make what they produce a lot more efficient.Construction
One example of this was WinSun, a Chinese real estate company. The company decided that they would make use of industrial waste, and use 3D printing to be able to create building blocks that could help them with their construction needs. The plan of printing this proved to be incredibly successful and the company was able to build an entire building solely out of materials that they got using 3D printing. It was not only an architectural marvel of the buildings that were created using this kind of technology, but also for the field of technology that was fast developing to make all of this possible.
The process of printing out the entire building proved to be incredibly useful for the company, not just because of the eco friendly processes used to make these concrete slabs for the construction, but also because it could potentially cut labor costs by a significant amount, and also the time that it takes to be able to produce these slabs commercially.
Another example of the progress in 3D printing that we have seen in the past year was with regards to printed food. As it currently stands, food industries tend to produce a lot of excess waste that ends up in landfills and water bodies. The thought behind printable food was to be able to create a more sustainable method of food creation, which would be able to automate the entire process, while still reducing the amount of waste that gets generated as a result of this. The 3D printed food that we say this year was a cumulation of carbs, protein, and vitamins into a small cube, known as the meal cube. This meal cube was enough to satisfy a person’s food needs, while still giving them the correct right nutrition that they need to stay healthy and fit. If this is a method of food production that food companies are managing to adopt, we could be on our way to a more economic and environmentally conscious food production system.Prosthetics
This year, 3D printing saw its most application in medicine, particularly, for the creation of prosthetics. This seemed like the ideal place for engineers to start their process of 3D printing, and now, is set to change the course of the medical industry. People are now being able to design and print fully functioning prosthetics that would be tailor-made for the person who is supposed to wear them. The prostheses that we are now seeing are being able to be modified in any way possible and to fit almost any kind of need.What are we going to see in 2018
One of the biggest changes that we are likely to see in the 3D printing industry is the ability to use raw materials as per personal preferences. The ability to change up the raw materials used would encourage more and more industries to enter into this sphere and make the most out of it.
The medical industry will see a lot more application of 3D printing, more than what is currently being seen. Doctors are currently trying to find ways to which they can apply 3D printing to transplants, surgeries and a host of other medical procedures.