Thanks, Rob. You're sure right about higher materials volumes making cost go down--but only if they start being sold by third parties so there's an open market. Something crudely similar happened with inkjet and laser printer ink cartridges, which were insanely high priced as long as you could only get them from printer manufacturers. Once that opened up, prices went way down. I say "crudely similar" because ink is basically ink, with a few color differences, whereas the types of 3D printing materials are far more numerous.
Like the vendor barking at the ballpark- "GIT YER PROGRAMS--Ya can't follow the game, if ya DON'T have yer PROGRAM!" Ann, we've dialogued on this multiple times, and I was previously confident to talk from experience and recollection – but this industry is unfolding almost exponentially now, and it takes a focused analyst and a tracking sheet to keep tabs on everything.
I see three factors converging & expanding, almost fluidly as an industrial life-form:
Nice blog, Ann. My guess is that the materials used in 3D printing will at some point become less expensive simply because of volume. In a few years, there will probably be a handful of materials and much of the 3D technology will become less proprietary. That will open the doors for reduced overall cost.
Truchard will be presented the award at the 2014 Golden Mousetrap Awards ceremony during the co-located events Pacific Design & Manufacturing, MD&M West, WestPack, PLASTEC West, Electronics West, ATX West, and AeroCon.
In a bid to boost the viability of lithium-based electric car batteries, a team at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory has developed a chemistry that could possibly double an EV’s driving range while cutting its battery cost in half.
For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.