Additive manufacturing has the potential to transform a wide range of industries, as the production of objects is transferred from factories to locations closer to where they are needed, i.e. closer to the customer. The International Space Station has been able to produce spare parts more economically in situ, while a similar approach could potentially be adopted for parts for cars, cargo ships and aircraft.
Implications are clear for the organisation of manufacturing, but also for how we cost and manage materials supply chains. There are technological and policy barriers to be overcome, but Tim looks forward to a national UK strategy for additive manufacturing, enabling UK organisations to exploit it effectively.
This video first appeared on the UK Manufacturing Review 2015 – 2016 website.