What is 3D printing?
In simple words, 3D printing is a process of converting a digital object into a real solid object. A real object is printed layer by layer from the raw material. A digital file is given as a input to the 3D printer and we get a real object as a output. There is no limitation on the object, it can be anything like your new toy design or a tooth-brush or any part of the machine. In short a 3D printer can print anything!
Raw material used in 3D printing
Currently, there are some limitations on raw materials. Generally plastics like ABS, PLA, PVA , soft PLA and metals like stainless steel, titanium, silver, steel, gold are used. Other materials like chocolate, bio-ink, skin etc are also widely used depending on the object to be printed.
Applications of 3D printing
3D printing has N number of applications, we can't even imagine how useful it is! Some of the applications of 3D modelling are as follows.
- Automotive industry
- Aerospace industry
- Fashion designing
- Cloning cells
- Interior design
Currently the short supply of kidneys in organ banks is an increasing obstacle. While research is still in its trial phase in Japan, the possibility of bio-printing or printing of live tissue reducing this gap promises that the technology has good scope in transplantation. -Dr Narinder Mehra, head of the department of Transplant Immunology & Immunogenetics at AIIMS, New Delhi.You can just prove your concept with 3D printing and that too at a very speedy rate. You can build anything that you have dreamed if, you can give shape to your imagination.
Scenario in India
Almost every other modern technology has certain barriers to expand industry , and 3D printing is not an exclusion .As the 3D printing market in India is at a nascent phase and is developing gradually and progressively , there are numerous elements that may obstruct adoption . Considering the market is at a young age and there is certainly lack of sufficient awareness regarding the advantages of the 3d printing , adoption is seen as scarce . Still , estimates prove that the market is set to experience a growth in the next two to three years . An additional element to be looked at is the price of technology . Having 3D printers set up in each and every company set-up may not be financially viable resulting in lower adoption rates . Still companies today have developed reasonably priced ink-jet based desktop computer 3D printers which are being increasingly useful for manufacturing 3D prototypes at a considerably lower cost using 3D printing.
Future of 3D printing
In future, we will see 3D printers printing objects using two or more different raw materials. This will further increase the usefulness of 3D printing technology. This technology is moving rapidly on a global degree and provides something which some time ago was not possible : On-demand , at any time , at any place , by any one manufacturing . Its time to make a change with this technology. Just remember , if you don't , your levels of competition are going to.