Wednesday, June 3, 2015

3D Printers: How 3D printers transform our economy – Wirtschaftswoche

by Dieter Dürand, Peter Stein Kirchner and Susanne Kutter

Shoes, T-shirts and mobile phones out of the 3D printer: Consumers put their desire products continue forth easily spot itself. Which business processes which calls into question where there are business opportunities.

can buy

Shoes pretty nervous. You run from store to store and find at the end but only a couple that expresses, shuffled – and does not look as cool as intended. As such, it has better customer of US startups Feetz and 3D Shoes. They measured their feet at home with their smartphone camera app and send the data to the manufacturer. Also, choose from design, color, material and sole. A few days later they reached a packet, in the shoes, made to measure in a 3D printer. . And with prices ranging from the equivalent of 50 to 180 euros depending on the model not even expensive

The new technology behind the service can do much more: In the meantime, can be combined with layer upon layer of powders, fibers or melted plastics Manufacture her almost every conceivable subject: bicycle frames, noodles, guitars, turbine blades, houses, and even blood vessels. Experts speak of additive manufacturing. The 3D printing thus reached a new stage. Anyone can now use the technology.

This is based on a two-fold leap in time. The process leads back to the pre-industrial era, as artisans every product manufactured individually. And it catapults the replicator from the future into the present. The device produced in the science fiction series “Star Trek” almost everything from scratch – from the cup of tea to the spare parts

Bespoke shoes from the printer

Not only starting. -ups, well-established companies are adapting to the new disruptive production technology. Because the convergence of manufacturing and selling breaks on industry structures and forces new business models. For example, the sporting goods manufacturer Adidas and Nike, the plans, 3D printers are installed in their own shops. On a touch screen there build the customer a running shoe together, choose your favorite color for the outer material, opt for a sole and laces in sloping green. Two hours later you can pick up a good piece.

What is there in footwear quasi sneaking on silent feet, has the potential for Big Bang. If businesses and consumers to print their products on the spot in the future, which turns back globalization.

selection of 3D printing process

  • Thermal 3D printing

    Similar to the” hot glue gun “material is applied, which cures connect

  • Polyjet

    As with the ink printer “8″ is material in drops applied and cured – eg is polymerized by UV-radiation plastic.

  • 3D printing

    A binder is applied to a layer of material (eg sand) -. later, the unbound material is removed and the desired contour stops

  • Selective laser sintering

    A powder layer is welded by heat (laser). . After the layered structure of the loose material can be removed and there remains the desired contour are

  • laser sintering

    Direct material melts – similar to the powder bed melts, however, the material is already applied selectively at the desired location and merged

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Still, there will be a number of years the coexistence of traditional mass production and additive single production before the new technique penetrated completely. But the trend will make soon about China’s current role as a cheap workbench of the world into question. As Richard D’Aveni is sure renowned economics professor at the Business School of Dartmouth College in the US. “Many productions then migrate back spot, whether shoes, toys and electronics.”

Even the purchase of smartphones could run very differently. The customer buy from Apple, Samsung and Co. only computing chips and software – make the housing including the display itself and print it out in 3D shop around the corner. The huge factories of the controversial Apple supplier Foxconn would then be largely unnecessary.


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