Additive Manufacturing is a Tool for Better Education

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Additive Manufacturing: A Tool for Better Education
Above: Additive manufacturing is a powerful tool in education/Image source: Leapfrog

More people are being drawn to the idea of 3D printed parts than before. Some might have considered them useless in the past because they couldn’t produce a specific part they needed. However, with recent materials, additive manufacturing is now able to create durable parts according to specification, and in some cases even surpass the parts created through traditional means. If you have been wondering if additive manufacturing is for school’s educational system, this article will be covering 5 reasons why you might want to consider it.

5 Reasons Why Additive Manufacturing is a Tool for Better Education

MakerBot 3D printers for classrooms
Above: MakerBot 3D printers for classrooms/Image Source: MakerBot

1.    You can reduce material waste

Normal manufacturing techniques tend to involve filling away materials till the design is created. Almost always, the removed parts of the material end up as waste. However, with additive manufacturing, the process of creating an item would require materials to be added until the part is created. You might still need to file off some edges, but the material waste will be much lower when compared to traditional methods.

2.    It can be faster and cheaper with small production

When dealing with large production runs, such as producing 300,000 parts of a single design, you might want to set up a mould as it would be the faster and cheaper method. However, when dealing with fewer parts, like you would in a school, things could become much faster and cheaper if you go with additive manufacturing instead. You should be good to go once you have the design file, 3D printer, and the required materials.

3.    It supports generative design procedures

With advancements in technology, engineers can use artificial intelligence in their approach to find the perfect design for a part. Engineers simply need to specify the dimensions needed, the material available, and the manufacturing method. The AI-driven generative design then takes over by suggesting different designs that would meet the specifications listed. This tends to save engineers time, and with additive manufacturing, means shapes we might have never considered could be created with ease. Additive manufacturing is here to help, just like a student might pay to do essay; you too can find a service provider and pay them to manufacture your part.

4.    The inventory is less likely to need old materials

Most companies and engineering departments of schools, tend to leave copies of old parts in their inventory in the manufacturing industry. The reason for this is, so they can recreate these parts when needed. However, if there’s a significant change in production style, these old copies most times become waste. With additive manufacturing, your inventory is stored in the cloud. So, when you need an old part, you simply need to download and print on demand. This approach to manufacturing means you can save space in your inventory and probably save the engineering department money in the process as well.

5.    Prototyping is fast and less expensive

There are times when a small sample or prototype of an item is the way to go when trying to teach or understand a complex topic in class. We have the Computer Numerical Control (CNC) in the manufacturing industry, which is much liked because of its efficiency and speed. However, the prototypes created this way tend to cost a lot as the entire CNC setup can cost as much as $40 an hour to run. To avoid burn through the department’s budget, Additive Manufacturing might be better. With Additive Manufacturing, your prototypes will be comparatively cheaper. While the savings might not be much, they can add up significantly over time.


With each year that goes by, it’s becoming cheaper to enter the additive manufacturing market as the cost of materials reduces, and the support for it increases. If you’re into manufacturing products, you might want to consider it. Hopefully, the 5 points laid out in this article have proved useful in helping you make up your mind.

About Manufactur3D Magazine: Manufactur3D is an online magazine on 3D printing. which publishes the latest 3D printing news, insights and analysis from all around the world. Visit our 3D Printing Education page to read more such informative articles. To stay up-to-date about the latest happenings in the 3D printing world, like us on Facebook or follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter.

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Manufactur3D is an Indian Online 3D Printing Media Platform that reports on the latest news, insights and analysis from the Indian and the Global 3D Printing Industry.
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