The first documented iterations of 3D printing date back to the early 1980s in Japan. He came up with a layer-by-layer approach to manufacturing, using a photosensitive resin that polymerized with ultraviolet light. inkjet technology was invented by Teletype Corporation in the 1960s, a method to “extract a drop of material from a nozzle using electronics”. The result was a device capable of printing up to 120 characters per second and ultimately paved the way for consumer desktop printing.
The first 3D printer, which used the stereolithography technique, was created by Charles W. Stereolithography has traditionally been an expensive commercial technique, with machines costing five and even six figures, but recent years have seen the emergence of professional desktop stereolithography printers that cost a few thousand dollars, as well as consumer systems that start with much less than a thousand dollars. Some online retailers specialize in 3D printers, such as Dynamism (Opens in new window), which sells a range of 3D printers from different brands and also provides customer support. A major complaint with 3D printing was that it was too slow to be used as a medium volume manufacturing option.
Multi-jet modeling is an inkjet-like 3D printing system that sprays a glue-like colored binder onto successive layers of powder where the object is to be formed. Anyone could easily get the parts to create their own Darwin, the only rule being that if you received the parts, you had an obligation to 3D print the parts to get more Darwin for other enthusiasts. With 3D printing, designers have the ability to quickly turn concepts into 3D models or prototypes (a). It is now possible to design your own 3D models using one of the free online 3D design programs, such as Tinkercad.
Industries such as manufacturing, architecture and product design are surely reaping the benefits of 3D printing, but some of the biggest growth is expected to occur in the electronics, aerospace and medical industries. However, they weren't the only new 3D printing company to achieve astronomical valuations and received hundreds of millions of dollars in investments. The first machines, high expectations and numerous 3D printing applications that are now flourishing. You may be surprised to learn that, despite its emergence as a new and innovative technology, 3D printing has existed since the mid-1980s.
Only those involved in 3D printing technologies in the early 1990s would know what was happening at that time. Printed electronics is a set of printing methods that allow electronic devices or circuits to be printed on flexible material, such as labels, fabrics and cardboard, by applying electronic or optical inks. Although printing is only part of the process, most people prefer to use the term “3D printing” when talking about technology in general. Early consumer 3D printing also promised to help reduce waste with a little less built-in obsolescence.
Doctors and medical technicians can use 3D printing to make prostheses, hearing aids, artificial teeth, and bone grafts, and to replicate models of organs, tumors, and other internal body structures from CT scans in preparation for surgery. But while all of these companies focused on 3D printing for manufacturing, others saw it as the solution to the growing housing crisis.