Dec.17, 2012

At 2012 International Additive Manufacturing Forum and the 6th China National Additive Manufacturing Conference, Bo Su, Vice Minister of Industry and Information Technology, said 3D printing will profoundly affect the future of the manufacturing industry, and China will strengthen the top-level design and overall planning. The country will establish organizations and use tax incentives to speed up the development of 3D printing technology.

Currently several universities and researching institutes are working on the research and devleopment of bio-manufacturing, ceramic forming, laser sintering machines and materials. These leading institutes are the Xi'an Jiaotong University, Huazhong University of Science and Technology, Tsinghua University, Beijing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics and Beijing Long Yuan-Automated Fabrication System.

End of last year Huazhong University of Science and Technology research team announced that they have successfully developed a selective Laser Sintering machine with build volume of 1200mm x 1200mm, the largest selective Laser Sintering equipment in the world.

Although China has become the global manufacturing center, China's manufacturing industry has a lot of pressure from high labor costs and low efficiency of economic growth. Su thinks the development and broader use of 3D printing technology could improve China's productivity and ease China's pressure on energy and resources.

Peigen Li, president of the Huazhong University of Science and Technology said that China was on par with western countries in development and application of the 3D printing technology.

Academician Bingheng Lu from Chinese Academy of Engineering added that the ratio of 3D printers being developed indicate a country's economic vitality and innovation capability. Currently USA has 38.5 percent of the world's total 3D printers, and China has only 8.6 percent. China has still a lot of room for improvement.

David Bourell, a professor of the University of Texas at Austin US said 3D printing has tremendous market potential. He thinks even just a small portion of consumer goods are produced through 3D printing, the market volume will be trillion dollar business.

Bourell sees great potential in the application of 3D printing technology in China, He said China will become the largest and strongest country in additive manufacturing industry.

3D printing technology gains a lot of attention in many countries in the world and it is also one of the top ten fast growing industry. "3D printing is specially useful for prototyping and custom products. It will shorten production cycle and has great advantage in producing large thin-walled parts, honeycomb complex structural components and titanium parts."

At present, additive manufacturing are widely used in industrial design, mold manufacturing, damaged parts repair and many other fields. It is moving forward to consumer goods manufacturing and functional parts manufacturing. "China has a lot to do and improve in this area." said Li.


Source: XinHuaNet


Posted in 3D Printing Technology


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