Global 3D Printing Powder Market: Snapshot
A large part of the 3D printers that are presently available in the global market are based on powders not filaments. Technologies such as laser sintering are used to create 3D prints in materials such as polyamide, alumide, rubber, and titanium. Digitally controlled layering of 3D printing powder is used to make a three-dimensional object from the powder fed to 3D printers. Some of the key materials used in making 3D printing powder include tool steel, stainless steel, copper alloys, aluminum alloys, diamond catalyst alloys, titanium alloys, super alloys of chromium and nickel.
Some pure metals such as platinum, gold, silver, and palladium are also used in making of 3D printing powder of different types. 3D printing powders have a characteristic packing density and specific morphology that ensure uniformity and good flow in 3D printing of different objects. Shape and particle size of 3D printing powders widely differs based on the end requirement and processing technology. Majority of the 3D printing materials available are spherical in shape with particle sizes vary between 50 μm and 150 μm.
With the massive expansion of the 3D printed products industry in the past few years, the market for 3D printed products has also swelled. According to Transparency Market Research, the market for 3D printing powders could expand at a promising 20.3% CAGR over the period between 2017 and 2025. If the prediction holds true, the market could attain a revenue opportunity of US$1,558.9 mn by 2025.
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Defense and Aerospace Industries to Remain Key Demand Drivers
Numerous industries such as medical, aerospace and defense, architecture, and automotive have significantly upped their intake of 3D-printed products and printing powders are being extensively used, courtesy the rising demand across these industries. One of the dominant consumer of 3D printing powder is aerospace and defense industry. The applications of 3D printing powders in defense and aerospace industry are in missiles, airbuses, and engine parts. Use of 3D printing powder ensures excellent toughness and durability in the end-products, while also helping in weight-reduction of the substrate on which it is being used and quick production of products based on new designs.
Another key application of 3D printing powder is used in making orthopedic implants in the medical industry, which can be customized according to the requirements. Implants made by using 3D printing powder are also cost-effective when compared with other types of orthopedic implants available in the market. Automotive components manufactured by using 3D printing powders exhibits excellent mechanical strength and other amended functionalities as compared with components made from ordinary materials. 3D printing powder is also used in tooling and prototyping jobs by automotive manufacturers to improve component’s toughness and robustness. 3D printing powder is also consumed in the production of several consumer goods such as jewelry, belts, watch, cosmetics, and footwear.
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Some of the leading players operating in the global 3D printing powder market are Advanced Powders and Coatings Inc., Arcam AB, Arkema, Carpenter Technology Corporation, ERASTEEL, GKN plc, Hoganas AB, Sandvik AB, Ltd., LPW Technology Ltd., and Metalysis.