3D Printing as a Sustainable Manufacturing Practice
The global additive manufacturing market is taking the world by storm, and 3D printing is becoming a standard for most companies. It goes to show that greater things are coming. From significantly reducing manufacturing costs to boosting prototyping and production efficiency, 3D printing is proving to be a staple practice for manufacturers looking to gain an advantage.
The revolutionary process is best known for its cost-efficiency and vital role in product innovation. Even so, there’s another benefit that comes with 3D printing that most are unaware of: it’s one of the most sustainable methods of manufacturing.
Here’s why 3D printing is a sustainable practice that can benefit your business, its customers, and the environment:
Sustainability takes place from start to end
Unbeknownst to most people, 3D printing upholds itself as a sustainable process in all aspects. One of the most remarkable aspects to consider is its ability to cut out needs for shipping. In a way, 3D printing has eradicated the need for environmentally-damaging transportation methods by enabling manufacturers to create their goods closer to the end-user. 3D printing machines come in all sorts of shapes and sizes at various price points, making it much easier to produce or print items in store. By bringing the production process much closer to the intended end-user, the process effectively cuts out tasks that create higher levels of carbon emissions.
3D printing services use sustainable materials
Aside from cutting out the need for environmentally-harmful and unreliable shipping processes, 3D printing’s sustainability comes from the materials it uses. Every manufacturer that uses 3D printers has access to dozens of sustainable, environmentally-friendly, and recyclable material options that make for more flexible choices. Although plastic is commonly used in the process, researchers and developers have been able to create sustainable printing methods that use natural materials.
While plastic 3D printing materials have a bad image because they’re comprised of non-biodegradable compounds, the truth is that they’re reusable. It’s easy to take old 3D products and recycle them into new ones repeatedly.
The total amount of energy used in a 3D printing service is less than that of the average manufacturing process
According to several studies conducted on the process of 3D printing, it has the potential to reduce a significant amount of energy consumption in the life cycle of a product. Several tests prove that 3D printers take between 41 and 64 per cent less energy to produce a certain product in comparison to processes that were carried out overseas. The significant reduction in energy usage can be attributed to fewer materials used and reduced need for shipping.
To wrap it up
3D printing technology continues to change the way manufacturers produce goods. Moreover, the process is also responsible for saving the environment through its sustainable practices and functions. It is possible to see noticeable positive changes in our environment over the next few years as 3D printing becomes more integral for various companies. While 3D printing may already be revolutionary in its current state, the industry is expected to see more sustainable developments in the future.
If you’re looking for a 3D printing service, get in touch with us today to see how we can help today!