Additive manufacturing is inherently a means of production that could improve the sustainability of industries around the world. The very idea of producing by adding only the material needed, instead of removing material in excess, without the need of producing tools could be a game-changer for the global environment. If fewer materials are needed, less are wasted. Producing parts when they are needed, and where they are needed can go a long way reducing overall emissions from industrial production.

The match between AM and sustainability also goes beyond industrial production: the use of 3D printing in construction is emerging as a much more environment-friendly approach, both in terms of workflows and materials used. This has obvious repercussions in the housing industry but also in renewable energy production.

However, the road to making AM a truly sustainable means of production is a long one. Currently, many metal AM processes are high-energy-intensive, many polymers AM processes still waste a lot of – often toxic – materials and construction 3D printing processes are still in their infancy.

As the global economy undergoes a dramatic contraction, an opportunity emerges to further develop AM into a way to produce in a more efficient way: digital, on-demand, additive and distributed manufacturing is now a serious and credible option. It may be the only option to tackle – in one shot – all the social, economic, health and environmental challenges that lie ahead.

HKU architects and marine scientists co-develop novel 3D printed reef tiles

In yet another fascinating demonstration of the capabilities of construction 3D printing to rebuild marine habitats, architects and marine scientists…

5 days ago

Nexa3D launches xCLEAN, an eco-friendly cleaning solvent for resin-based 3D printers

Nexa3D is introducing - with immediate commercial availability - xCLEAN, an effective and environmentally friendly washing solvent that is designed…

1 week ago

RIZE obtains UL Greenguard certification for XRIZE 3D printer

Last fall, Boston-based 3D printing company RIZE, Inc. announced with pride that its RIZE One 3D printer was the first…

1 week ago

Rotterdam to unveil 3D printed FRP footbridge

The city of Rotterdam in the Netherlands presents a compelling example for the blending of traditional and modern architecture, design…

1 month ago

Relativity Space and 6K partner to create circular economy for AM powders

Relativity Space has announced a strategic alliance with 6K, a developer of microwave plasma technology for powder production, to 3D…

1 month ago

6K commissions first commercial Unimelt Microwave Plasma systems for AM powders

Microwave plasma technology company 6K (formerly Amastan) has announced that its AM division, 6K Additive, has commissioned the first two…

2 months ago

COBOD joins GE Renewable Energy & LafargeHolcim to 3D print bases for 200-m-tall wind turbines

A new partnership forged between GE Renewable Energy, COBOD International and building materials company LafargeHolcim will seek to develop optimized…

2 months ago

To the last grain of AM powder

In order to fulfill the promise of additive manufacturing of eliminating material waste, the AM industry needs to stop wasting…

2 months ago

Discussing sustainability with Sherry Handel, Executive Director of the AMGTA

This interview was originally published in the 3dpbm AM Focus eBook on Sustainability. Last November at Formnext 2019, aerospace and…

2 months ago

3DPARE deploys 3D printed reefs off the coasts of England, France and Spain

After finalizing the 3D printed reefs in the labs of the Civil Engineering School of the University of Cantabria, 3DPARE…

2 months ago