A sector worth 3 billion dollars
The use of 3D printing has an impact in different industrial sectors, as well as in daily life
In its early stages 3D printing was defined as an Industry of a trillion dollars, today it is within the reach of the masses. 3D printing originated some decades ago. What is innovative is the use of new technologies and low hardware and software costs using systems that allow the work and creativity contribution.
The use of 3D printing impacts in a countless of processes in which it can be applied, not only for industry evolution, but in benefit of people in their daily activities.
At the beginning, 3D printing had several advantages on techniques and manufacture process, and traditional fabrication, such as the construction of a model that represents an object pretended to be created commonly known as prototype, as it does not requires a high cost as before due to the setting of machinery, tools and modern materials.
The impact generated by the development and consolidation of 3D printing is given in different sectors.
- Logistics: it reduces the supply chain, materials logistics, factories network, warehouses and transportation companies which usually are used to move a product to its final user.
- Manufacture: it opens the possibility of manufacturing and replicate clothing, footwear, training, office objects and for homes, accessories, and automotive pieces or for industrial use.
- Low scale manufacture: it allows creating customized objects and serial based on the needs and own specifications.
- Aerospace: it allows the development of parts and equipment for aircrafts outside the planet, experimental use, recreating specific tools without the need of having inventory. In addition of pieces that previously were composed of several individual parts, today are printed in one piece.
- Medicine: it helps in the creation of low cost prosthesis, composed material implants without being rejected by the human body, medicine dose of medicines, cells, and tissue and human organs.
- Architecture: it allows experiencing with complex structures and new methods of construction, leaner structures with greater support, resistance and patterns that previously only could be imagined or draw.
This revolution will change everything as of now, from the way toys for children are made, home-appliances manufacture, industry prototypes, to materialize human organs.
In some years complete machines may be printed, functional and with mobile parts made of different materials, which will not require any assembly and that could be ready to be used at home and office, without the need of going to stores neither have to wait for shipment delivery.
About ten years ago, 3D printing was exclusive for corporations and high technology laboratories. It was a technology used almost exclusively by research and design areas that wanted to generate object prototypes intended to manufacture.
For example in the industrial sector, 3D created prototypes of remote controls, to mold the device so it correctly fits the hand; or in automotive bodywork, to know how aerodynamic the car is or to know which pieces fit better in the chassis.
However, given the functioning of these low speed and of high cost and operation printers, they did not knew how to provide them with a domestic use neither for commerce, and either to transform the industry when producing large volumes.
Boeing, one of the main aeronautic companies has being pioneer in implementing 3D printing, printing up to 22,000 components which are used in a diversity of aircrafts. For example, Boeing has used 3D printing to produce ‘Environmental Control Ducting’ for the 787 airplane; with traditional techniques, ECDs are made of 20 pieces due to its complex internal structure, but today, with 3D printing, Boeing produces one-piece ECDs.
The main sectors used in 3D printing are electronic, 20.3 %; automotive, 19.5 %; medical, 15.1 %; aerospace, 12.0 %; machining, 10.8 %; academy, 8 %; government and militia, 6 %; architecture, 3 % and others 5.3 %.
3D printing in Ciudad Juarez
At Technology Creative Core they have more than 8 years of experience in technology, design and 3D printing manufacture; in TCC they created the first 3D printer focused on the Latin American industrial sector.
Technology Creative Code develops its technology in Ciudad Juarez, Mexico and El Paso, United States. In Mexico are designed and manufactured printers. Research and development activities are fulfilled to incorporate new technologies and designs to its products and assert their position in the market.
Currently, TCC has four 3D printer basic models: ATOM IV, ATOM IV Plus, ATOM V and ATOM VI. The difference among them is the printing volume and special accessories. ATOM IV is of 200 cubic millimeters, ATOM IV Plus is of 300 cubic meters, ATOM V is of 400 cubic millimeters and ATOM VI of a cubic meter.
With ATOM printers prototypes can be made, as well as replacement pieces and completely finished products. Even, these printers have pieces directly printed by themselves, this means, pieces produced by the printer which are used in the printer.
3D printing services are intended to the industrial sector; the company has requirements of up to 10,000 pieces with determined specifications. Some pieces are used to substitute others that were machined before, therefore costs are significantly reduced.
The main TCC clients are Cesar Scott in El Paso, Pemjusa in Juarez, Safran Labinal in Chihuahua, Impulse in Juarez and El Paso, Flutec in Juarez, Centro de Arquitectura in Torreon, Repinel in Juarez, among others. In addition, they offer products and services to potential important international companies.
“Our printers are a great deal in price because we develop all the technology here, this make us different, we are not retailers neither distributors, we manufacture our own designs. In addition, we focus in the industrial sector, unlike the majority who are focused on the consumer sector. We have strong printers, with long-lasting materials and provide customer service. The ATOM I was the first 3D printer in Latin America and later the ATOM IV was the first industrial printer in Latin America. The entire design was created by Technology Creative Core,” said Joan Miramontes, director and one of the founders of Technology Creative Core.