Manufacturing using 3D printing technologies holds significant promise in strengthening U.S. manufacturing competitiveness by transforming how many products are made and increasing supply chain efficiencies, according to Stratasys (Nasdaq: SSYS), a manufacturer of 3D printers and materials for personal use, prototyping and production.
Attendees view a demonstration of Stratasys 3D printers at NAM board meeting in Washington D.C. (Photo: Business Wire)
However, Stratasys also noted that industry, government, and academia need to continue collaboration across key areas to help realize the potential economic impact from accelerated use of additive manufacturing. These include efforts to educate industry on the viability of existing and developmental 3D printing technologies, and strengthen STEM education to prepare the workforce of tomorrow. Stratasys provided a demonstration of 3D printing technology at the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) annual board meeting in Washington D.C. on Wednesday, Oct. 2. And both Stratasys and NAM agree that current economic conditions may enable additive manufacturing to scale up and drive significant economic impact. “Additive manufacturing or 3D printing can fundamentally change many aspects of the manufacturing process,” says Stratasys CEO David Reis. “It brings new agility and efficiency and can help manufacturers keep production at home. It is imperative that 3D printing technology providers, manufacturers, universities and government work together to help fulfill the promise of this impressive and impactful technology and strengthen our economy and manufacturing. Stratasys is actively working to that end.” The theme of US manufacturing competitiveness and innovation was echoed around the country today as hundreds of manufacturers and industry groups recognized National Manufacturing Day by hosting events to showcase U.S. manufacturing capabilities and the future of the 3D printing industry. “Additive manufacturing technology is becoming more and more accessible, and poised to usher in an era of new opportunity for manufacturers in the U.S.,” says Jay Timmons, president and CEO of the National Association of Manufacturers. “Manufacturing is at the center of our national conversation, and it is innovation and technological advancement that will keep it there.”