April 2, 2014

While American and European 3D printer manufacturers currently dominate the 3D printing market, Japanese government is looking to fight back.

The Japanese government has allocated 4 billion yen ($38.6 million) in funding for its national 3D printing projects, including the research and development of 3D printing machines and refined 3D molding technology.

Among which, 3.2 billion yen funding will be allocated to support research and development of 3D printers capable of producing end use products in metal for industrial use. Another 550 million yen will be used to develop super-precision 3D printing technology, including Fused Deposition Modeling, Selective Laser Sintering, as well as technology for post-processing and powder recycling. The remaining 250 million yen is for developing new 3D measurement devices and image processing software.

In the short term, Japan plans to support the use of 3D printers in educational settings where students may receive hands-on experience in learning about 3D data and 3D printing technology. By bringing 3D printing technology to students, they hope to provide skills and experience to their students which will allow them to become comfortable working with these tools in research and design – while also engaging their imaginations.

In 2014 the Japanese Economy, Trade and Industry Ministry plans to launch a new research and development initiative, together with three major universities and institutes, and 27 Japanese companies including Mitsubishi, Nissan, and Panasonic, to promote the research and development of 3D metal printers. The goal is to have prototype machines capable of printing high grade metal parts by 2015.

The three universities and institutes are: the National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology, Tohoku University and Kinki University.

Japan's long term goal is to build the most advanced industrial 3D printer by 2020 to make a major impact on the 3D printing market. Internationally, the 3D printer market is already dominated by the United States and Germany, with 75 percent and 15 percent market share, respectively. Japan's share is just 0.3 percent. If Japan's nascent 3D printer industry can produce some success stories, the field could really take off.

Posted in 3D Printing Company

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chris silvia wrote at 4/2/2014 6:04:29 PM:

wow i would love to be apart of that!! i started --- https://www.facebook.com/pages/Southern-Idaho-3D-Printers-Group/673694712681546 stop in and say hi!!!

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