The market for 3D printing materials has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic, but plenty of market drivers point to a strong future, according to research by business intelligence firm IDTechEx, published as “3D Printed Materials Market 2020-2030 - COVID Edition.” Indeed, IDTechEx forecasts that the global market for 3D printing materials will be worth $18.4 billion in 2030.
Dr. Jonathan Harrop, director of IDTechEx, has recently published an article on the topic of 3D printed materials. This article follows the release of the new IDTechEx report, “3D Printed Materials Market 2020-2030: COVID Edition.”
3D printing is moving into mainstream manufacturing and onto production lines, according to the report, due to significant, recent evolution in printers and printer consumables.
It is now possible to print bigger and more intricate items than ever in a wide range of materials. Materials covered in IDTechEx's report include photosensitive resins, thermoplastic powders, thermoplastic filaments, metal powders, metal wire and ceramic powders.
New materials extend market opportunities
This range of technologies and products and increasing versatility—in particular, the ability to print biocompatible and even safety-critical components—is helping to make additive manufacturing a growing presence in the supply chain, according to IDTechEx. Now that metal alloys can be 3D printed to very precise specifications, with the ability to vary proportions and composition across a single component, printed elements are now being used in commercial airliners, and aerospace customers are looking to extend their use.
The facts that 3D printing is highly customizable and can be undertaken locally are also strengths in markets that increasingly demand these. For example, at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, when health care sought effective PPE and medical consumables, responses often came from relatively small, local companies using 3D printing to make bespoke masks, swabs and valves for CPAP machines.
“3D Printed Materials Market 2020-2030 - COVID Edition” also considers nascent materials and those that will be commercialized by 2030. However, the growth trajectories of markets and materials are not completely parallel: there is still a large body of legacy printers that will continue to require traditional consumables, and they will remain standard in some applications.
Impact of COVID-19
The 3D printing sector generally, and materials, in particular, have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. While the metal components market is still worth billions, two of the sectors most eager to incorporate printed components—aerospace and automotive—have been hit hard. There is still potential for growth in markets for 3D printing materials, and IDTechEx forecasts a global market value of $18.4 billion in 2030.
For more information on this report, visit www.IDTechEx.com/3DPMats or for the full portfolio of 3D Printing research available from IDTechEx click here.
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