The widespread application of 3D printing technology in the field of automotive parts has become a general trend. Some people say that it will be a major breakthrough in the automotive industry and will most likely overturn the traditional "four major processes." Nowadays, ideals seem to fit into reality. With the continuous emancipation of the "Industry 4.0 concept", 3D printing is one of the core technologies supported by this revolution. In recent years, 3D printing has once again been pushed to the top of the market and has been used in many industries. And the manufacturing industry's proud son - automotive and parts manufacturing is the focus of 3D printing technology promotion. However, the lightweighting of automobiles is a long-term trend. In traditional automobiles, the lightweighting of automobiles is the only way to save energy and reduce consumption.
Compared to traditional manufacturing processes, what can 3D printing bring to the automotive industry?
In terms of design
Using 3D printing technology, a conceptual model can be produced in hours or days. Due to the rapid prototyping of 3D printing, automotive manufacturers can apply to the development of automotive form factors. Compared with traditional hand-made clay models, 3D printing can more accurately convert 3D designs into physical objects, and the time is shorter, improving the production efficiency at the automotive design level. At present, many manufacturers have begun to use 3D printing technology in the design, such as BMW, Mercedes-Benz Design Center.
In terms of materials
3D printing allows for a wide variety of material choices, different mechanical properties, and accurate functional prototyping, allowing manufacturers to correct mistakes and refine designs at any time in advance, minimizing error costs.
In terms of fixtures
3D printing technology provides a fast and accurate method, which greatly reduces the cost and time for tool production. As a result, automakers are rapidly improving their productivity, efficiency and quality.
For production tools such as water-soluble cores, carbon fiber packages, injection molding, and other 3D printing applications, companies can quickly customize tools, reduce costs, and shorten time-to-market.
In the final use of parts manufacturing
Automakers use 3D printing technology to automate small-volume custom parts and production, and to create and manufacture complex geometries such as organic shapes, hollows, and negative stretches. 3D printing can quickly create complex parts. When a problem occurs in the test, modify the 3D file and print again to test again.
With the rapid increase in the application of 3D printing technology in the automotive industry, a well-known market consultancy, Frost & Sullivan, recently released a related investigation report, predicting that the market size of 3D printing for automobiles is expected to reach US$4.3 billion by 2025. Almost all automakers such as Ford, BMW, Lamborghini, Volkswagen, General Motors, Porsche, Honda, Chrysler, Mercedes-Benz, Audi, etc. are continuing to explore the possibilities of 3D printing.
In the era of rapid technological innovation, “3D printing” is hot and has been used in many industries. Automobiles and parts manufacturing is the focus of 3D printing technology. At present, not only automotive chassis, interiors, and body exterior covers, etc. Many parts and components have been successfully used ABS plastic and carbon fiber materials as the basic material, to achieve 3D printing production, "whole vehicle" printing has also been shown many times, printing time is getting shorter and shorter, the level of technology is getting higher and higher, earning Full of the world's attention.
The current mainstream 3D printing technology has seven basic types, namely: material melt extrusion FDM, adhesive spray 3DP, material droplet ejection, powder material flat melting, direct energy deposition LENS, thin material overlay LOM, photosensitive resin Tile SLA. Among them, FDM, powder coating melting and SLA have been applied in the automotive industry, and not only auto parts, many companies have begun boldly trying to print the "whole" car.