At its most basic, 3D printing is really quite simplistic. Just as a traditional printer lays down toner or ink onto paper to create documents, a 3D printer lays down layers of different materials, such as plastic or sand to create various objects. And though it is simplistic, the technology is seen as revolutionary and ushering in a new era of manufacturing and consumerism.
Futuristically speaking, there isn’t an industry on the planet that wouldn’t see a complete paradigm shift in supply and demand. With the technology’s application expansion and with continued price drops, production of any type of goods, even at the household level, would not be thought out of the question. Imagine needing a new pair of shoes. Rather than driving to the local shoe store and searching a limited inventory of mass-produced shoes, one would instead, purchase the raw materials, load their printer, customize and purchase their design online and “print” their new pair of shoes. 3D printers could give a whole new meaning to the phrase “locally-manufactured”. Possible applications, though decades into the future, would include food production and even body parts and organs. “Bioprinters” use layers of living tissue and are scaffolded with layers of hydrogel to create material made of human cells. According to CNN, scientists are already using this technique creating skin and cartilage.
At AET Labs, we specialize in the best in 3D printers enabling the printing of multiple different materials, including those specialized for dental and medical applications. In the world of 3D printing, the future is now.