3D printing is a technology, design, and manufacturing process that creates three-dimensional (3D) solid objects from digital files. A 3D printed object is made from an additive process in the manufacturing setup in which a thin, small section of the object is created, layer by layer, until it’s complete. 3D printing uses a ‘build-up’ philosophy, which is more efficient and uses fewer materials than the traditional method of manufacturing, which starts with a large object and whittles it down to fit the design. Among the types of products made with 3D printing capabilities include industrial products (like manufacturing tools and machinery), consumer products (like furniture, footwear, and eyewear), dental products, movie props, and artificial prosthetics.
It’s valuable to learn 3D printing because 3D printing is an important emerging technology that will play a key role in the way manufacturers create products in the years ahead. Learning about 3D printing may help you become fluent with the programs, machines, and processes necessary to do 3D printing. Additionally, when you learn 3D printing, you'll better understand the key aspects of the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (S.T.E.M.) system of learning. This will help you think creatively or logically while learning how to solve problems and work in group environments.
Typical careers that use 3D printing include 3D designer, 3D printing specialist, and 3D printing customization positions. Each of these jobs has key responsibilities in the entire 3D manufacturing process. In addition, there may also be career opportunities to work in manufacturing, sales, operations, or education about the 3D process. The technology involved with 3D printing is so new that there’s a large demand for people who can work in and educate others about 3D printers and 3D modeling concepts. Search for new insights into careers for 3D printing for manufacturing if you have an interest in working with design, modeling, and engineering processes.
When you take online courses to learn more about 3D printing, you can learn how digital design software and CAD/CAM machines integrate to produce 3D printed products. You also have the opportunity to learn how to take an idea for a product and turn it into a 3D printed object, using the knowledge and skills acquired through your online courses. Taking online courses on 3D printing can guide you through a step-by-step process in which you develop a product from idea to the finished piece using 3D printer special capabilities of customization, assembly, and product printing. Learning about 3D printing technology can also help you think more deeply about creating products that can solve society’s needs in the future.
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