3D-printers and a new industrial revolution


14/04/2012

Peter Schmitt, of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), published in 2009 hours. This was not a clock image on paper. He published three-dimensional clock with moving parts.

"They were not very neat, but it was a functioning clock," - said Schmitt.

Scientists at MIT are working on the printer, which can print your robot. Their vision: to choose a model, load the design from the Internet, make the necessary changes and click the "Print".

Scientists from around the world are working on technology that goes far beyond robots and clocks and is able to deliver on its head the global economy. It was called the 3D-Printing, and some claim that it will lead to the next industrial revolution.

Most modern production is based on the reduction or reductionism. Manufacturers take blocks of plastic, wood or metal, and clean with tools unnecessary parts until you get the correct thing. Waste from plastic, wood or metal, which do not fall into the final product, which can be up to 90 percent of the raw material, go to the dump.

3D-printers stacked layers of metal powder or plastic, just as the paint is laid on regular printer paper. After completion of each layer, the tray, which is subject to a millimeter lowered, whereupon the next layer is added. Molten metal is left at the time of cooling and solidification, and plastic or metal powders solidified by exposure to ultraviolet radiation. In this set of starting materials is not limited to these substances. Almost all flows may be used, even chocolate.

Established in 1984, the first such machine was very large, expensive and has a limited feature set. But already in 2008, was created printer capable of printing itself, which cost $ 400.

According to estimates of the company Wohler Associates, for the past twenty years, the growth of the industry stood at 26.2 per cent a year, and turnover means it will reach $ 3 billion in 2016.

Every year the printing technique becomes more advanced, faster and cheaper. These printers are used to print aircraft landing gear, dresses, car parts, individual dental crowns, artificial hips and knees, and much more. Scientists have already started experimenting with human cells to print organs.

"Print a few thousand iPhone at a local, can be much more profitable than to produce ten million identical to the iPhone in China and deliver them in 180 countries around the world," - said in a statement Atlantic Council.

According to the report, the industrial centers such as China, could lose millions of jobs in this sector, and the economy could be destabilized. Shipping industry also suffer damage. However, in the Atlantic Council think that we will have the Renaissance in the industry.

Original: Phys.org


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