This week, 3CMGM went to Materialise, the first 3D printing company in the world and the biggest in its kind (with production and innovation plants on three continents). My class and I were impressed by all the things that can already by printed today and all the different kinds of materials that can be used, like titanium, aluminium, plastic, powder etc. For example, we were able to hold a piece of aluminum. When we tried to bend it, we found out it was impossible. The aluminum was very real to the touch as well: cold, strong and sharp at the edges.
Here are 10 things we (and probably you too) didn’t know could by 3D printed:
- Body parts like faces, hips and knees
- Even whole bodies!
- Fashion & jewelry
- Ortphedic soles & running shoes
5. Car bumpers (and basically even whole cars!)
6. Furniture and lamps
7. Some kinds of food (like chocolate)
8. Construction parts
9. Art works
10. Christmas decorations
And that’s not all! Right now, 3D printing companies are experimenting with printing biological products like food, plants and organs.
Innovation develops every single day, so who knows what the possibilities will be in five or ten years? Maybe by 2050 we will all have our very own 3D-printer at home and we don’t need to buy stuff anymore – we’ll just duplicate our key if we lose it!
Of course, there are also some dangers with this technology: what if people start duplicating other people’s keys? Or what if they start printing their own money?
It can definitely be said that a lot is happening in the 3D printing world. The future looks bright and promising. And to say that it all started right here in Belgium!