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3D printing to grow in China: Wohlers

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Terry Wohlers, the President of Wohlers Associates, has commented on the global growth of 3D printing, with trends including China’s interest in the technology and the shift towards creating end-use parts.

Consulting firm Wohlers Associates publishes the annual Wohlers Report, and founder Wolhlers has spent a quarter of a century analysing and forecasting the industry's trends.


In a recent interview, Wohlers commented on the increasing interest in additive manufacturing in China, highlighted in this year’s report, saying that the nation does not have the experience of the US or Europe but will lead global growth.


“We believe the most growth will occur in Asia in general, but China in particular,” he told Engineering.com.

“The central, provincial, and city governments in many parts of China are excited about its potential and are launching initiatives that could spur substantial growth.”

He also noted that growth would be led by industrial use, despite the interest in personal printers and their increasing affordability, and singled out GE Aviation’s use of additive manufacturing to create fuel nozzles.

“Earlier this year, the company announced that fuel nozzles for its next-generation aircraft engine, the LEAP engine, will be manufactured on 3D printers,” offered Wohlers.

“With 19 nozzles per engine and the production of 1,700 engines per year, the company expects to produce more than 32,000 very complex metal parts by AM annually. We expect to see more production applications like this in the coming years.”

To read the entire interview, click here.

Image: http://airpigz.com/blog/2013/5/23/video-3d-printing-exotic-high-temp-alloys-the-future-is-now.html

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