3D printing up close – innovation, vision and best practices

3D fab+print touchpoint for drupa 2016

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drupa’s realignment is shifting thefocus towards innovation in the sectorand providing a special platform forpioneering interdisciplinarytechnologies like 3D printing
drupa’s realignment is shifting thefocus towards innovation in the sectorand providing a special platform forpioneering interdisciplinarytechnologies like 3D printing

3D printing is one of the technologies that everyone in the print community is talking about. Additive production processes are on the minds of users in the design and packaging industries, machine and plant construction, aerospace, automotive construction and dental and medical technology the world over. So futuristic 3D printing has an important role to play at drupa 2016. “drupa’s realignment is shifting the focus towards innovation in the sector and providing a special platform for pioneering interdisciplinary technologies like 3D printing,”says Sabine Geldermann, director of drupa. Numerous ‘traditional’ exhibitors like HP, Leapfrog, Mimaki, Roland, Ricoh, Xerox and TU Chemnitz are already looking into this technology and will be presenting exciting solutions. First movers like Stratasys and Massivit 3D Printing will also be attending drupa 2016.

“It was important for us to pick up and focus on this topical issue. The potential of3D printing in many vertical markets shouldn’t be underestimated. In particular,spare parts for mechanical engineering or packaging design offer huge opportunities for machine builders, users and also print providers,” continues Geldermann.The 3D fab+print touchpoint in Hall 7A reflects this diversity. This special show willpresent the very latest state-of-the-art technology as well as vision and exciting best-practice cases. Technology providers and customers, exhibitors and visitors,visionaries and real-life users can meet here and drive this exciting topic forward.KCI Publishing BV a knowledge and communication company based in the Nether-lands has been tasked with organizing the 3D fab+print touchpoint.

The Additive Manufacturing in the VDMA work group, a VDMA initiative, will also contribute to drupa 2016 with a series of presentations in the 3d fab+print touch-point along with its own activities. “3D printing is very appealing and exciting for the consumer market. It allows for complete customization and is the key to highly flexible production, making 3D printing very attractive for promotional items and personalized products. 3D printing is also ideal for producing small batches of tools, for finishing, for example,” explains Rainer Gebhardt, project manager of the Additive Manufacturing work group. And last but not least, 3D printing is also featured in the drupa innovation park – in the ‘Innovations in Printing Technologies’ area.

The Covid-19 pandemic led to the country-wide lockdown on 25 March 2020. It will be two years tomorrow as I write this. What have we learned in this time? Maybe the meaning of resilience since small companies like us have had to rely on our resources and the forbearance of our employees as we have struggled to produce our trade platforms.

The print and packaging industries have been fortunate, although the commercial printing industry is still to recover. We have learned more about the digital transformation that affects commercial printing and packaging. Ultimately digital will help print grow in a country where we are still far behind in our paper and print consumption and where digital is a leapfrog technology that will only increase the demand for print in the foreseeable future.

Web analytics show that we now have readership in North America and Europe amongst the 90 countries where our five platforms reach. Our traffic which more than doubled in 2020, has at times gone up by another 50% in 2021. And advertising which had fallen to pieces in 2020 and 2021, has started its return since January 2022.

As the economy approaches real growth with unevenness and shortages a given, we are looking forward to the PrintPack India exhibition in Greater Noida. We are again appointed to produce the Show Daily on all five days of the show from 26 to 30 May 2022.

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– Naresh Khanna

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