3D printing is a technique of creating a three-dimensional object in which consecutive layers of material are generated under computer control. These objects can be of different geometry or shapes and are created from electronic data source, for instance, an additive manufacturing file or digital model data or 3D model. This technology is used for rapid prototyping, mass customization, mass production and speedy manufacturing. Key end-users of this technology include industries such as automobile, footwear and architecture. The use of this technology in different industry verticals is increasing due to the simplicity of its usage as compared to other traditional methods. Thus, the demand for 3D printing is predicted to boost at a high pace in both commercial printing as well as personal printing applications in the near future.
Investments by government in 3D printing projects, affordability and ease of generating customized products and benefits derived from 3D printing are some of the major factors propelling the market growth. With the advancement in technology along with declining prices of 3D printers, it is anticipated that the market for 3D printing will grow at a high rate. Also, multi-jet printer which uses more than one color and material at a time and accessibility of open software such as Spark by Autodesk and Photoshop by Adobe are bolstering the demand of these printers for personal use. However, the inability for quick production in bulk is a major reason hindering the market growth.
The 3D printing market is segmented on the basis of material type that includes metals, plastics, ceramics and others. Based on 3D printing technology, the market is segmented into fuse deposition modeling, direct metal laser sintering (DMLS), inkjet printing, laser metal deposition (LMD), laminated object manufacturing, stereolithography, selective laser sintering (SLS), polyjet printing, electron beam melting (EBM) and digital light processing (DLLP). On the basis of process, the market is segmented into binder jetting, powder bed fusion, Vat photopolymerization, sheet lamination, direct energy deposition, material jetting and material extrusion. Also, the market is segmented based on end user applications into tooling, functional parts and prototyping. On the basis of software, the segmentation includes design software, printer software, inspection software and scanning software. Furthermore, the industry verticals analyzed in the report include aerospace & defense, automotive, education, energy, architecture & construction, healthcare, consumer products, industrial, jewelry, printed electronics, food & culinary and others. Geographically, the market is segmented into North America, Asia Pacific, Middle East, Africa, Europe and Latin America.
The North America region is dominating the market for 3D printing owing to its usage in major industry verticals such as aerospace & defense, industrial manufacturing and healthcare. The market for 3D printing is expected to rise in Asia Pacific region in the coming years due to the adoption of advanced technologies. Healthcare, industrial, aerospace & defense and consumer products are the prime industries that accounts for the majority revenue share for the market. The market for the printed electronics, education, jewelry and energy industries is anticipated to boost at a noteworthy rate in the future.
Other than developing prototypes, various companies are adopting 3D printing for manufacturing end-user products. GE uses the laser-powered 3D printer technology to develop products and parts for aircrafts. Some of the key industry players are 3D Systems, Stratasys Ltd., Hoganas AB, Arcam AB, Voxeljet AG, Organavo Holdings, Inc., The ExOne Company, Ponoko Limited, Autodesk, Inc. and Optomec, Inc. among others.