How 3D Printing Can Affect Your Broken Supply Chain During The Crisis Caused By The COVID-19 Outbreak?
Worldwide pandemic multiplies the problems in the supply chains, especially in sectors such as manufacturing and logistics. The spread of coronavirus has caused disruptions in many plants, broke supply chains, and prevented production at many industrial factories.
The COVID-19 pandemic causes disruptions in the logistics and supply chain, this in turn results in a shortage of components and a lack of parts necessary for production. In many factories, especially in Spain and Italy, where the number of cases is now the highest, there is a shortage of employees.
The world economy is a widely connected system. Today, when we are all struggling with the coronavirus epidemic, business is slowing down, getting ready for recession. The borders are closed, transport is limited. According to the International Labor Organization, unemployment could increase by 5.3 million as a result of the impending crisis. And this is an optimistic scenario.
This time of global crisis forces most companies to review their current working methods and consider implementing new tools and technologies. Such as 3D printing.
How 3D Printer Can Help Your Business During Broken Supply Chain?
1. Maintaining Continuity Of Production
A manufacturing line downtime may occur in case the supplier of a part fails. Such a situation exposes companies to financial losses that may grow with time when awaiting a replacement. It may even last a few weeks. Finding a new local supplier, in a crisis, can be a big challenge.
Therefore, it may be much better to use 3D printing in your own company. This will reduce downtime due to missing parts. Owning a 3D printer is a perfect alternative for fast access to spare parts needed for the operation of a given device or the whole engineering line.
2. Production Of Components In Your Company
3D printing technology enables producing any type of elements that come into a majority of mechanisms, e.g. engines or various systems. 3D printers provide the opportunity of preparing even the most non-standard and hardly available custom-made elements in a short time. Thanks to this solution we are not dependent on external suppliers, which is a big advantage in a crisis like this.
The use of 3D printing technology allows parts to be made where and when they are required, without very expensive molds. Additionally, if we can produce elements in our company, we do not have to pay for transport.
3. Manufacturing Of Very Resistant Parts
Many components used in machines and devices can be replaced by 3D printed parts. The use of high-performance 3D printing materials such as PEEK, ULTEM, or PC allows achieving elements that have very good mechanical properties. Moreover, parts from these filaments can be chosen as metal parts replacement.
In case the supplier of our parts fails, we can produce the same parts ourselves without losing their properties. Contrary to general belief, we may have access to a wide range of materials that we can use in our business.
4. Getting Critical Elements Just-In-Time
Imagine that you are missing a single part to complete the whole product. You don’t know when you’ll get the part you need. Although you have 99% of the elements, the lack of one of them delays your production. You can take the time to find a replacement from other suppliers. The choice of this option does not guarantee success, since many companies closed down during the pandemic.
Having a 3D printer in your company can quickly help you to complete your product in case of such a situation.
5. 3D Printed Spare Parts As An Alternative If The Supplier Fails
Closed borders, difficulties in logistics, and staffing shortages are all the causes of slowed production today. The resulting losses cannot be completely avoided, but we can try to minimize them by using technologies available on site such as 3D printing.
6. Producing End-Use Parts
Increasingly, we observe situations in which spatial prints become elements of finished products, not just their prototypes. What’s more, 3D printing is now able to use materials, such as ULTEM or PEEK, allowing parts to be exposed to really heavy loads, thanks to which this technology meets the industry requirements. For large consortia it can successfully be the most optimal solution in the production of end-use parts and dealing with logistic barriers.
7. Reducing Costs Of Production
Until recently, 3D printing technology in industry was mainly used in the process of rapid prototyping of models. Today, 3D printers are used to support production processes, make functional parts, or necessary tools cheaper.
3D printing not only accelerates the production of new products, e.g. missing components. Its major advantage is also shortening the production time and reducing its costs. At a time when companies that manufacture components by traditional methods are closed and transport from China is blocked, this form of production seems to be the most effective.
The Examples Of Supply Produced By 3D Printing To Fight COVID-19
A hook to open doors without contact.
Full range of 5 respirator-free reanimation valves.
A face shield is intended to protect the wearer’s partial or entire face and the eyes from hazards.
A circuit splitter and flow restriction device for multiple patient lung ventilation.
This mask enables the replacement of the filter regardless of the chosen material.
Converts a Decathlon snorkeling mask to a hospital ventilator mask.
Just grab one end of the handle and press it with the other hand. Can keep hands clean, and will not damage the door and buttons.
Sounds Interesting To You? Contact Us Now!
There may be a lot of crises in the future that we can’t control. Is investing in a 3D printer a good idea? 3D printing technology may help you in various fields. You can produce from a small part to the holder for your complicated device to make it work to the end-use part that is critical for your product.
3D printing can help you with many many different applications through many materials. If you have no idea what filaments will proper for your project, you can consult it with our 3D printing engineers at: [email protected]