It has been hailed as the technology of the future; a process that will eventually increase efficiency worldwide and do so in an environmentally-friendly way. But you probably know why 3d printing rocks already. What you might not know is that a certain multi-billion dollar online retailer by the name of Amazon is using 3d printing technology to change the way it delivers parcels to customers.
The company’s conceptual drone delivery system, known as Prime Air, is expected to launch within the next three years, under the proviso that extensive tests show it to be completely safe. In some exciting news from the United Kingdom, Amazon recently gave a sneak peek into its new delivery system at a development center near Cambridge. A local newspaper, Cambridge News, and five students from a nearby school received invites to check out the lab and see what’s going on there.
This pioneering delivery method is likely to receive a lot of press in the coming years. Therefore, the exposure given to 3d printing can only be a good thing.
Drones & 3D Printing
You’re probably wondering where 3d printing fits into Amazon’s new system. The key is in the drones themselves. Pictures from the sneak peek show a range of 3d printers in the development center. Some of the component parts of Amazon’s drones are made with 3d printing methods, which help improve the aerodynamics of the airborne devices. Furthermore, the 3D printers help to quickly test prototypes and alternate versions of the drones. According to Amazon, there are more than a dozen prototypes at the moment. Moreover, the 3d printers will help the retailer to refine and evolve its drones over the coming years before release.
An Exciting Application
The use of 3d printing methods by Amazon is good news for three reasons. Firstly, it brings more exposure to the technology, which is always a good thing. Likewise, its adaptation could become more widespread. Other manufacturers will be taking note of how Amazon is using additive manufacturing to develop its future technology. When such a big name has faith in 3d printing methods, it’ll send out strong positive signals to other industries.
Finally, the students who received invites are at an impressionable age. Seeing the technology in action for themselves might’ve piqued their interest enough to spread the word among friends and family. As a consequence of this, more of today’s youth might pursue careers related to 3d printing, which is always a positive.