Is 3D Printing good for the environment?

There has been a lot of discussion on 3D printing and its effects on the environment in the recent past. People are exploring the opportunities that 3D printing and modeling can provide, along with its environmental impact. Although the additive manufacturing technology only contributes to 1% of the global manufacturing market currently, it is set to explode in the coming years going from $18 billion in 2022 to $83 billion in 2029. Along with the numerous benefits that 3D designing and printing have over traditional manufacturing, the technology also ensures reduced wastage and a positive impact on the environment.let’s find out how.

How 3D printing is good for the environment

Reduction of wastage

In traditional manufacturing, which is a subtractive process, a large block of material is initially taken, which is then trimmed off to get the exact amount of material as required by the final structure. The remaining material is all waste and is thrown off. 3D printing services functions differently. This is an additive process whereby the printer follows a CAD (Computer-aided-design) and places material layer by layer. It leaves a hollow space at wherever the material is not required. This causes much lesser waste. The environmental impact of this is that it reduces landfill, thereby resulting fewer greenhouse has emissions, lesser toxins percolating to the ground and lesser pollution.

Amount of shipping reduced

Traditional manufacturing requires a lot of shipping, which eventually leads to great amount of greenhouse gas emission. The product must be made in a production company, then transported to a packaging company and then finally to the store. But in 3D printing, on the other hand, the product can be made and the packaging can be done locally. The design of the product just needs to be sent digitally to the location at which the production happens. This can also help in supply chain issues where only the required amount needs to be produced and sent from overseas production sites.

3D Printing & manufacturing can use recycled material

In 3D architecture modeling and other types of 3D printing as well, recycled materials can be used, which is great for the environment. The filaments and plastics used in 3D printing are biodegradable and hence cuts down on plastic waste. More advances are seen in recycling technology and this will lead more types of 3D printing using recycled materials.

Customized products can be made

Something significant that separates 3D printing from traditional manufacturing is the fact that construction parts can be made to order. This means that companies don’t have to mass produce items and waste material. This leads to various prospects including affordable housing.

Scientists are constantly researching on this amazing technology and finding more ways to make 3D printing more sustainable. The future is certainly bright for this technology. Generation 3D, as a company, strives to achieve sustainability with the 3D printing technology and this makes us one of the best 3D printing companies in Dubai and UAE.

3D Printing vs Traditional Manufacturing: Comparison

Comparison between 3D Printing and Traditional manufacturing

What is the difference between 3D printing and traditional manufacturing? Will 3D printing replace traditional manufacturing? These are some commonly asked questions in the world of designing and manufacturing. Although there are no exact answers to these questions, a comparison between the two will help you make your own conclusions regarding this debate.

3D printing, or additive manufacturing is a technology in which 3D models are printed from CAD or digital models. 3D printers are used for this process and the structures are made by placing the material layer-by-layer to achieve the final object. Traditional manufacturing involves established manufacturing procedures including grinding, drilling, casting into moulds and more.

Advantages of 3D printing over Traditional manufacturing

3D printing was initially developed to be a rapid prototyping process but then grew to become a true manufacturing method. Generation 3D helps uses this technology to help industries spanning from architecture and interior design to fashion and automobiles to make 3D models and 3D printed objects in a very cost-effective and timely manner. The following are some of the advantages of 3D printing:

1.Complex designs can be built at no additional cost: Since the 3D printing methodology involves printing an object directly from a digital model, the complexity of the design does not become a cause of concern. Traditional manufacturing involves manual labour and hence complexity of the design could pose a problem.

2. Faster manufacturing: The objects once designed are then printed out using a 3D printer. This makes the involvement of manual labour minimal and hence ramps up the whole manufacturing time.

3.Less wastage of material: 3D manufacturing involves depositing material layer-by-layer, as opposed to traditional manufacturing processes that involves cutting out requisite material from a larger block. This leads to more wastage.

4.Can combine manufacturing and assembly of structures: Since 3D printing directly involves depositing material and creating the required structure, there is no need for different steps for manufacturing and assembly as seen in traditional manufacturing.

5.Ideal for creating customized objects: Design flexibility is great in 3D printing. Traditional or conventional manufacturing methods are more suited for mass production due to steps like tooling, molding, casting costs and overall limitation in design flexibility. This also makes 3D printing suitable for low-mass production.

6. Equipment requirement: While traditional methods require various different machines for tooling, molding, casting, etc., all of these is done with a 3D printer.

7.Low labour requirement: Since most of the manufacturing work can be done using a 3D printing from 3D designing to creation of the structure or 3D model making, the labour requirement is low. This is not the case with traditional manufacturing methods since a large portion of the work requires manual labour.

Disadvantages of 3D printing over traditional manufacturing

Traditional manufacturing is mainly subtractive, which means that an object is machined or removed from a larger block of material. This is a more established process of manufacturing and holds some benefits over 3D printing. The following explain these:

1.Best suited for mass production:While 3D printing has an upper hand when it comes to design flexibility, cost, speed, and production of low-volume or customized objects traditional manufacturing is better suited for mass production. The conventional methods involve molding, forming, machining and joining, and this is best suited for mass production.

2.Wider material selection: Conventional methods offer wider material range selection over 3D printing

3.Batch quality checks: This is easily possible with traditional manufacturing methods but difficult with 3D printing

3D printing is changing the way manufacturing is done in all kinds of industries as it is more cost-effective, gives results in lesser time and has design freedom. At Generation 3D, we are passionate about 3D designing, 3D architecture modeling and 3D printing, with a team of design experts who strive to create the most optimize designs for our customers. Our expertise and passion in the field make us the best 3D model making company in Dubai and the best 3D printing company in Dubai.