3, 4 and now 5?

    We know 3D printing. We are just starting to appreciate the future benefits of 4D printing. Now, engineers at Mitsubishi Electric Research Labs are already talking about 5D printing. This new additive manufacturing method would print from 5 different axes, reinforcing parts in areas where strength is needed. 3D printing creates objects by horizontal layering. This can create weak spots where the object is subject to a force perpendicular to the direction of layering. With the 5-axis technique, the print plate moves with the printer head, so the printing path follows the shape of the part. According to the first tests, this method creates objects that are 3 to 5 times stronger than those printed using conventional 3D printing techniques.

    About the Author

    Journalist and the Editor-in-Chief for DirectIndustry e-magazine. She has years of experience in business issues for various media including France 24, Associated Press, Radio France…

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