A process that creates a physical object directly from a software blueprint
Example: 3d printing, laser cutting, CNC milling, Waterjet cutting,
Stereolithography, CNC lathe
First Open-source systems
(2005) SFF 2006
The 10 disruptions:
Disruption 1: Complexity is free
Traditional manufacturing: more complicated shape, more cost
3D printing: Costs as the same as simplicity.
Fabricating an ornate or complex shape does not require more time, skill or cost
than printing a simple block. Also, free complexity will disrupt traditional pricing
models and change the calculation of cost of manufacturing.
Disruption 2: Variety is free
Traditional manufacturing are less versatile and can make limited shapes.
3D printing can make many shapes.
Like a human artisan, a 3D printer can fabricate a different shape each time.
3D printing removes the over- head costs associated with re-training human
machinists or re-tooling factory machines. A single 3D printer needs only a
different digital blueprint and a fresh batch of raw material. Disruption 3: No assembly required
3D printing can form interlocked parts.
Mass manufacturing is built on the backbone of the assembly line.
In modern factories, machines make identical objects that are later assembled by
robots or human workers. The more parts a product contains, the longer it takes
to assemble and the more expensive it becomes to make. By making objects in
layers, a 3D printer could print a door and attached interlocking hinges at the
same time, no assembly required. Less assembly will shorten supply chains,
saving money on labor and transportation; shorter supply chains will be less
Disruption 4: Zero lead time
3D printer can print objects on demand.
Traditional manufacturing needs to stockpile physical inventory.
New types of business services become possible as 3D printers enable a business
to make specialty or custom objects on demand in response to customer orders.
Zero-lead-time manufacturing could minimize the cost of long-distance shipping
if printed goods are made when they are needed and near where they are
Disruption 5: Unlimited design space
Traditional manufacturing technologies and human artisans can make only a
finite repertoire of shapes, which is limited by the tools available to us. For
example, a traditional wood lathe can make only round objects. A mill can make
only parts that can be accessed with a milling tool. A molding machine can make
only shapes that can be poured into and then extracted from a mold.
A 3D printer removes these barriers, opening up vast new design spaces. A
printer can fabricate shapes that until now have been possible only in nature. Disruption 6: Zero skill manufacturing
Traditional artisans train as apprentices for y