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Transforming Advantages of 3D Printing in The Robotics Industry

As companies are moving towards Industry 4.0, the demand for rapid manufacturing and automation is increasing. Be it automotive, aerospace, defence or robotics — industries now seek scalability to ease complex jobs. Additive manufacturing is playing a transforming role in helping companies achieve more optimization and scalability.

With several emerging trends, 3d printing solutions are helping robotics engineers and designers to accomplish complex tasks faster and with higher accura1cy. With years to come, the advancements of 3d printing in the robotics industry will make companies thrive on innovations.

Several companies are already leveraging customized 3d printing applications to boost their robotics operations. Be it faster turn-around, intricate customization, cost-effective manufacturing, or rapid prototyping; the benefits are endless. Key benefits of 3d printing in the robotics industry that are laying the foundation for better manufacturing are:

Customized tooling for manufacturers

Robotic mechanisms need not be necessarily identical, and manufacturers do require customization to accomplish different tasks. Manufacturing hubs are using 3d printing technology to produce custom jigs & fixtures, tools, and other custom parts with intricate details. This mainstream property of additive manufacturing offers greater freedom to design custom robots to meet specific manufacturing goals.

3D Printing in The Robotics Industry1 (1)

Manufacturers design robots to perform either time-consuming, dangerous, or complex tasks for the human workforce. For meeting specific requirements with higher accuracy, traditional manufacturing falls short. So, to manufacture the custom robotic arms and other functional mechanisms, 3d printing comes in handy.

For the past couple of years, companies are 3d printing intricate functional parts that are easy to install, maintain, repair and replace once the life-cycle of that part is over. With these on-demand scalability features, 3d printing technology acts as a catalyst in the robotics industry.

Faster prototyping

Be it robot grippers, custom arms, or other spares — every part comes with a unique set of functionalities and are often complex to manufacture. In the conventional method, engineers first need to design, manufacture and then assemble the parts. However, on the other side, engineers can quickly create and manufacture that functional part keeping the production cycle shorter.

3d printing prototype is the modern advancement that allows designers and manufacturers to push established boundaries and innovate. Most companies use their robotic setup round the clock to scale up their production. In this scenario, the part replacement cycle should be faster, and the delay should be minimal. For streamlining the maintenance and replacement jobs, 3d printing fits as a superior technology.

Designing a robot comes with a comprehensive set of trial-and-error methods, and it is inevitable for engineers to test all use cases. To speed up this process, additive manufacturing aids engineers with faster designing, prototyping and process re-iteration.

On-demand fabrication

Companies are closely working with automation and additive technologies to progress towards Industry 4.0. 3d printing technology has gone beyond rapid prototyping and modelling, and it is capable of direct fabrication. The robotics industry can save substantial time in building a complete part from scratch using 3d printers.

Using additive technologies, companies now have the freedom to develop full-fledged parts for robots to improve its working efficiency. 3d printing methods like DMLS are competent to produce highly accurate and cost-effective functional robotic parts. The potential of manufacturing custom robot parts with more capabilities is immense with 3d printing.

Whether companies need a single part or they need to execute a small-batch production, 3d printing can handle all. The robotics industry can leverage the versatile advantages of additive processes to grow its business. As 3d printing technology is improving rapidly, we can expect more advanced on-demand fabrication. Companies can gain a competitive edge over others by boosting their business with 3d printing.

Time and cost optimization

Time and capital are the two most critical aspects for any business to grow and serve customers better. As compared to traditional methods, it’s more economical for companies to produce custom parts regardless of the quantity. As material wastage is lower in additive manufacturing as compared to subtractive methods, companies save substantial capital.

For manufacturing a complex robotic part with traditional machinery, engineers need to undergo multiple cycles. However, additive processes can manufacture perfect parts in one go with accurate design and superior quality. Technicians have the advantage of building smaller pieces and then assembling them using 3d printing. It makes the entire process more efficient and faster. Businesses can also manage their operations with less workforce with the combination of 3d printing and robotics.

Several companies are offering custom 3d printing in Perth, Australia and other countries to boost profitability and product quality. We will see more mainstream applications of 3d printing dedicatedly working towards optimizing robotic operations in the upcoming time.

Faster troubleshooting

3d printing technology has made the troubleshooting process faster and more cost-effective as compared to legacy methods. Once technicians find the mechanical flaw in the system, it becomes convenient to replace it by printing a new one. The company owner doesn’t need to wait for the region to arrive from another location. Technicians can print new features in-house and minimize the delay in fixing the machines.

Engineers can also use 3d scanning to perform reverse engineering or damaged part if the CAD file is not available for printing. Once the design is ready, technicians can produce the spare parts in just a couple of hours. And the best part is that doing improvisations in previous design becomes more accessible and more accurate.

Future of 3d printing in the robotics industry

Additive manufacturing brings massive potential to the robotics industry, and we can expect more efficient advancements from this technology. From better product designing to creating complex robotic parts and even entire robots — the opportunities are endless. With the improving availability of additive technologies, more small-scale companies will adopt this new way of operating the business.

3D Printing in The Robotics Industry

This technology is paving the path towards a better future for the robotics industry. Besides boosting the company’s revenue, it will also improve the workforce’s safety. 3d printing will bring more agility across sectors and allow companies to execute complex processes faster.

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