As its application matures, additive manufacturing has the power to transform industries as diverse as aerospace, automotive, power generation, and medicine. Its prototyping and low-volume production capabilities is already revolutionizing design, engineering, and production processes. However, for AM to evolve into a technology for mass customization, it still faces limitations. With the goal of promoting dialog and collaboration, Oerlikon, working with the Technical University of Munich (TUM), organized the first Munich Technology Conference (MTC) on the topic of additive manufacturing. At the two-day conference held in October, experts from industry, science and politics met to discuss the future and opportunities of this technology.
Each sector has its own crucial role. Science promotes the education and skills development necessary for ongoing innovation in additive manufacturing. Industry identifies opportunities to commercialize those advances. Governments must establish a political framework to accelerate the pace of integration and application of 3D printing capabilities. Associations strengthen the connections among these players and promote the technology, standards, and certifications.