Additive Manufacturing with Polymers and Plastics 2018
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This new report on additive manufacturing with polymers and plastics is the fourth in an ongoing annual series produced by SmarTech Publishing. The report tracks the market progress by key polymer printing technology segment, based on the growing industry support of multidisciplinary polymer printing strategies. This report features deep dive analysis and market data in each technical segment, complimented by a comprehensive market-wide analysis to provide stakeholders the most well-rounded resource for polymer 3D printing strategy and critical market data.
SmarTech has developed and implemented new reporting capabilities for market data on additive manufacturing with polymers and plastics resulting in an astounding 128 fully featured market data exhibits across this report. The report reviews historic data and provides projected hardware and material revenue opportunities and market demand metrics ranging from machine installations, to unit sales, to material shipments, to pricing trends, and revenue generation – all by the industry’s most expansive breakouts of print technologies, material categories and polymer material groups, industries, and geographies.
From the Report:
Additive manufacturing with polymers and plastics continued its journey towards a manufacturing revolution in 2017. Another year has progressed the technologies forward in various ways – some significant, and others less so –and the overall period has been one marked by significant change and evolution. While metal 3D printing and additive manufacturing technologies have continued to capture a significant share of growth, investments, and media attention over the last several years, additive manufacturing with polymers and plastics processes continue to be tightly linked to legacy applications in prototyping and modeling despite a significant interest in moving them into manufacturing and production.
However, a new trend is becoming established for solution providers in polymer 3D printing when developing and marketing products -competing with traditional molding processes across several popular benchmarks including costs, throughput, and lead times. Placing traditional molding processes in the proverbial sights shows how the 3D printing industry for plastics has entered a market-pull scenario where end users find the current benefits of the technology attractive but see limitations in the ability to expand the current solutions to meet more ambitious goals for print technologies.
Leaders in the 3D printing industry are now fully committed to designing and implementing upgrades, new process architectures, and post processing equipment to improve reliability, predictability, machine productivity, and automation. These efforts differ significantly in practical implementation depending on print technology, but certainly are setting the stage for a true manufacturing revolution in polymers and plastics.
Until these new technical upgrades and developments can fully come online in market, polymer 3D printing technology has continued to grow based on adding value in more concrete areas of application including producing end-use parts indirectly by printing various kinds of tooling. Other companies continue to develop processes aimed primarily at prototyping and modeling, which remains for the most part the backbone of the industry –a balance which is shifting at an increased pace.