The Top Challenges in Additive Manufacturing and How to Overcome Them. Learn more now!
Additive manufacturing (AM) processes involve adding material until the product is finished. AM is the opposite of subtractive manufacturing (SM), the traditional machine shop methods of cutting away a solid material until the item is completed. 3-D printing is the activity most often linked with additive manufacturing, but it includes technologies such as:
This article explores the challenges (primary, technical, operational, organizational) in the additive manufacturing sector, how to overcome them, and solving the challenges by working with an experienced additive manufacturing partner.
There are several opportunities to improve the additive manufacturing arena. These challenges include the following:
As with new technology, several technical challenges remain before most manufacturers embrace the AM industry. These include the following:
The new technologies lack precedent for adopting additive manufacturing at the operational level, and there are few business- and cost-calculation models based on AM technology. Digital design ownership is another legal concern that frightens many companies, as does the severe shortage of skilled personnel in the AM fields.
The good news is that the popularity and adoption of AM are growing rapidly. The rapid development of new materials is helping AM to replace many conventional subtractive technologies. Establishing globally accepted AM standards will also help the industry increase its footprint in manufacturing.
These concerns can be alleviated by partnering with an experienced 3D printing partner. This step eliminates capital expenditures and the learning curve. A partnership provides access to more additive materials and various post-processing options. In addition to direct partnerships with manufacturers, several distributed manufacturing companies vet local manufacturers and are available to oversee these services.
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