Cost, resources, and energy efficiency of additive manufacturing
AGH University of Science and Technology, Faculty of Mechanical Engineering and Robotics, al. A. Mickiewicza 30, 30-059 Kraków, Poland
* Corresponding author: email@example.com
Additive manufacturing (AM) is the process of joining materials to make objects from Computer Aided Design (CAD) model data, usually layer upon layer, as opposed to using subtractive manufacturing methods. The use of rapid prototyping technologies has increased significantly in recent years. These new techniques, while still evolving, are projected to exert a profound impact on manufacturing. They can reduce energy use and time to market and offer industry new design flexibility. We include a brief study on the cost and energy efficiency of selected methods of additive manufacturing compared to traditional methods of manufacturing parts. One common claim is that 3D printers are more energy-efficient than other manufacturing technologies. We present energy efficiency and time requirements for producing a typical mechanical part and a very complicated element, using both traditional manufacturing and rapid prototyping methods. This paper represents an attempt to answer the questions of when 3D printing can be used efficiently and of choosing the appropriate technology on the basis of batch size, element size, complexity, and material requirements.
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2017
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.