Additive Manufacturing: A Ground-breaking Change to Empower Industry 4.0

Bhagyashri Kambale| November 20, 2021
Advanced manufacturing enables the concept of industry 4.0 and represents a significant milestone in the manufacturing industry. Additive manufacturing is a critical component of the industry 4.0 concept, propelling the industry to new heights of innovation.

In various fields that are not immediately related to industry 4.0 or manufacturing, additive manufacturing has alternatively been referred to as 3D printing. The numerous advantages of additive manufacturing, such as reduced cost and time, are boosting its popularity and use in manufacturing and other industries.

“Digital technology is so empowering on so many fronts, but for it to be empowering, it must be for everyone.”

– Michael Walton, Director, Industry Executive (Manufacturing) at Microsoft.

The global market of additive manufacturing is anticipated to increase at a 14.42 percent compound annual growth rate from USD 9.52 billion in 2020 to USD 27.91 billion in 2025. According to this market research, the future of 3D printing or additive manufacturing is quite bright in the coming years, and we will see widespread application across industries.

First, let us understand the idea of additive manufacturing and its benefits to various industries.

Concept of Additive Manufacturing

Additive manufacturing is building a real thing from a three-dimensional computer model, often by successively layering a material. This technique utilizes computer-aided design (CAD) software or 3D object scanners to command devices to deposit material in exact geometric shapes layer by layer. As the name implies, additive manufacturing involves the addition of material to produce an object.

Additive Manufacturing Benefits

Produces Fewer Scraps and Trash

When we compare additive manufacturing to traditional manufacturing techniques such as milling or turning, additive manufacturing adds only the amount of material required to build a product. As a result, it generates less waste and conserves scarce resources.

Reduces the Time and Cost of Prototyping

Making a product prototype is now faster, easier, and cheaper. Other production processes, like milling, have high setup and material costs. Prototyping is less expensive and takes less time, so you can quickly produce, test, and modify. It also shows practically instant verification of progress done.

It Encourages the Digitalization of Businesses

Continuous and effective communication between devices, machines, and robots is required for additive manufacturing. However, this is only achievable with effective digitization of production processes. As a result, businesses invest more in digital and IoT, a prerequisite for Industry 4.0.

It Simplifies the Assembling Process by Condensing it into a Single Component

Additive manufacturing in Industry 4.0 also simplifies the production process, especially product assembly. A traditional component requires numerous manufacturing procedures. This increases material and labor expenses as well as production time. However, additive manufacturing allows you to print the group in one piece.

The Top Three Industries That Make the Most Use of Additive Manufacturing

Additive manufacturing is presently used in a variety of industries. However, specific sectors make the best use of it. Thus, we will examine the industries embracing additive manufacturing technology and emerging with new life easing solutions.


In the healthcare industry, dentistry is the critical application of additive manufacturing. Technology helps it create bridges, crowns, braces, and dentures, always in high demand.

Additive manufacturing has also been used to create tissues and organs, surgical tools, patient-specific surgical models, and personalized prosthetics. For example, many medical equipment companies employ 3D printing to build patient-specific organ replicas that surgeons can practice before completing complex surgeries.


Additive manufacturing is utilized to fabricate metal brackets that serve as structural components within airplanes. Prototypes are increasingly being printed in three dimensions, allowing designers to fine-tune the shape and fit of finished parts. In addition, interior airplane components such as cockpit dashboards and door handles are manufactured using 3D printing services.


3D printing can manufacture molds and thermoforming tools, grips, jigs, and fixtures for the automotive industry. Automakers utilize additive printing to customize parts for specific vehicles or drivers (e.g., seats for racing cars).

An appealing colored dashboard, efficient fuel systems, and complicated braking mechanisms are all possible with 3D printing in the automotive industry. Therefore, it is best suited for pre-production, manufacture, and modification of automotive parts.

How Does NASA use additive manufacturing in its space projects?

The space environment has always been unpredictable, and scientists must be adequately prepared before embarking on any space mission. They must consider the durability and weight of all the objects they propose to transport into space. To land any object on a planet that does not have a flat surface or similar weather conditions to earth, scientists must design each object with these considerations in mind.

“You always want it to be as light as possible, but you also want it to be strong enough.”

-Chris Chapman, NASA Test Engineer

It is not conceivable to make items capable of dealing with all the changes on other planets and achieving these project objectives using conventional materials and production processes. However, scientists do require a technique that will enable them to manufacture lighter and stronger objects for their space missions.

3D printing has played a significant part in meeting this demand and has provided space projects to manufacture objects that would withstand any unexpected events during space missions. For example, NASA employed 3D-printed metal components in their Mars project.

NASA's specialized engineers are utilizing additive manufacturing to create rocket engines and possible Moon and Mars outposts. NASA used the 11 3D printed metal components on its Mars mission as well. It employed 3D printed components for the first time in the Curiosity rover, which landed on Mars in 2012. It was a successful project, and NASA has since begun employing 3D printed parts in its space missions to make machines lighter while remaining robust and functional.

Final Words

Additive manufacturing technology is making a real difference in the manufacturing process, and it is becoming the trending technology in the manufacturing industry. The benefits of additive manufacturing make the manufacturing process more advanced, easy, and customer-oriented. Additive manufacturing is the major transformation in the manufacturing industry and will take it to new heights of precision.


Why is additive manufacturing critical?

Additive manufacturing reduces the time and cost of prototyping and reduces the scraps amount during the manufacturing process of any object. In addition, it simplifies multiple processes from various industries.

Are additive manufacturing and 3D printing the same?

Yes, additive manufacturing and 3D printing are the same processes with different names as per the choice of the different industries. For example, in some industries such as space missions, It is also referred to as Fused Deposition Modelling (FDM).

Which is the most applied sector for additive manufacturing?

Healthcare is the industry that utilizes additive manufacturing technology the most. It also helps medical practitioners practice surgery on any critical body part with its 3D printed model from human tissues.



WithoutWire Inventory Sciences (formerly Appolis) provides Inventory Management Solutions that include Warehouse Management Solutions (WMS). We improve inventory efficiency and streamline optimization–all by applying an unmatched scientific rigor. For distribution and manufacturing organizations looking for better, WithoutWire will deliver.


Technologies That Will Keep You Ahead in the Manufacturing Realm

Article | November 20, 2021

Modern manufacturing methods are pioneering and adopting manufacturing industry advancements. To remain competitive in the present era and provide the most excellent industry solutions to your organization and target customer group in 2022, you must employ new manufacturing technologies in your manufacturing processes. Additionally, embracing current technologies is the ideal approach to tackle the industry's current challenges such as workplace safety, digitalization of operations, and a lack of skilled workers. This article will discuss some of the leading manufacturing technologies that transform traditional manufacturing facilities into smart manufacturing factories. So, let us begin. Manufacturing Technology & Innovations for 2022 To better understand industry 4.0, let's look at some of the manufacturing technologies that will dominate the manufacturing industry in 2022. 3D Printing Numerous industries, including aerospace, healthcare, electronics, and architecture, utilize 3D printing in manufacturing. It is the most widely used technology across industries and will remain so in 2022 and in the years to come. We may also anticipate more advancements in this technology to help overcome current barriers to 3D printing adoption, including equipment costs, material constraints, lengthier manufacturing times, a lack of knowledge, and legal issues. Additionally, it would assist manufacturers in overcoming current manufacturing challenges such as increasing product demand, increasing automation, and locating and retaining the workforce in manufacturing plants. It is vital to incorporate 3D technology into production processes to achieve greater precision and accuracy in manufacturing. IoT The Internet of Things is a critical component of the industry 4.0 revolution. It has altered the environment of data collection and analysis across sectors. For example, the Internet of Things is assisting manufacturers in better understanding manufacturing and supply chain operations, forecasting product demand, and boosting customer experiences. Implementing IoT in your manufacturing plant will also help you avoid production delays and increase the performance of your production lines. Additionally, it will decrease equipment downtime and improve process efficiency. It also enhances worker safety and enables more effective labor management. To begin implementing IoT in your manufacturing plant, you must first examine your manufacturing processes and research how other organizations have implemented IoT in their manufacturing processes or products. This method will assist you in determining the optimal location to begin integrating the IoT in your manufacturing plants and transforming them into smart ones. “Once you start to look at yourself in the right way and realize that projects are at the core of your business, it is easy to see how you should use technology to support your business.” – Matt Mong, VP of Market Innovation and Project Business Evangelist at Adeaca. GD & T The model created in the CAD program for any product is not exactly replicated with the exact dimensions during the production procedures. Thus, manufacturers or engineers utilize GD&T (Geometric Dimension &Tolerancing) to manage and communicate the permissible variation within a product assembly to manufacturing partners and inspectors. GD&T is a programming language that enables developers and inspectors to optimize functionality without incurring additional costs. The primary advantage of GD&T is that it expresses the design intent rather than the final geometry. However, as with a vector or formula, it is a representation of the actual item. AR & VR The two primary transformation aspects in the industry 4.0notion are augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR). AR technology in manufacturing enables firms to operate more efficiently by reducing production time. Additionally, it discovers and resolves manufacturing process difficulties. Virtual reality technology benefits the industrial business in a variety of ways. It enables product designers to mimic their prototypes or models using powerful virtual reality software. This enables them to correct faults at the first stage of production and minimize production time and cost. Additionally, the technology provides additional benefits, such as increased workplace productivity and safety. ERP Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) refers to a comprehensive end-to-end software solution that is used across sectors. It assists the manufacturing business in successfully maintaining production processes and other operational data by avoiding numerous roadblocks along the way. ERP technology enables enterprises to improve process efficiency and product quality by tackling industry-specific difficulties such as insufficient data, operation integration, inventory control, supply chain management, and on-time delivery. Discover How John Deere Manufactured Their Tractors Using Cutting-edge Technologies John Deere is a significant firm that embraces innovation and the Internet of Things. The company integrates Internet of Things sensors, wireless communication, and intelligent land management systems. It further integrates IoT tools into its manufacturing process, bridging the gap between technologies. Additionally, the company is a pioneer in GPS technology. Its most modern technology, which it incorporates into tractors, is accurate to within two centimeters. Additionally, the organization has implemented telemetry technology for predictive maintenance. Final Words Manufacturing innovations are assisting manufacturers in modernizing their traditional manufacturing processes. Modern manufacturing is equipped with modern technologies that aim to improve the processes and goods, increasing the manufacturers' commercial revenues. So, to remain competitive in this age of technological innovation, manufacturers must update their manufacturing processes to remain relevant in today's manufacturing world. FAQ What is manufacturing innovation? Manufacturing innovation includes new technology, supply chain modifications, and product and process improvements. As a result, businesses can benefit significantly from innovation and typically surpass their competitors. Which technologies are considered to be a component of advanced manufacturing? 3–D printing, robotics, IoT, nanotechnology, cloud computing, robotics, and big data are the significant components of advanced manufacturing. How are cutting-edge technologies assisting the manufacturing sector? The cutting-edge technology can precisely estimate demand to set production objectives, analyze machine data to predict when parts will break before a human operator can detect, and more. { "@context": "", "@type": "FAQPage", "mainEntity": [{ "@type": "Question", "name": "What is manufacturing innovation?", "acceptedAnswer": { "@type": "Answer", "text": "Manufacturing innovation includes new technology, supply chain modifications, and product and process improvements. 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Reshoring and Technology Platforms Transforming Hiring Practices in the Manufacturing Sector

Article | March 31, 2021

Everyday the supply chain is jeopardized. A freighter stuck in the Suez Canal has severe ripple effects in raw material goods making their way around the world. Trade tariffs and unpredictable consequences from COVID have encouraged many US manufacturers to reshore bringing jobs stateside. This strategy will shift the supply chain challenge to a staffing challenge. As the manufacturing industry is poised for rapid growth over the next 24 months, hiring the best workers once again becomes the top challenge. As the workforce is vaccinated and reshoring the supply chain becomes a clarion call for industry, finding the right people with the right skills forces plant managers, operations managers, and HR managers to find new and innovative recruiting strategies. FactoryFix is an online platform that matches vetted manufacturing workers with companies seeking specific skill sets. This platform sets a new standard in how small to mid-sized manufacturers hire talent across the U.S.

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This Is How You Can Lower Your Manufacturing Overhead

Article | December 21, 2021

When it comes to developing a budget for the following financial year of your manufacturing business, many operations managers start with direct labor and material expenditures. But, what about manufacturing overhead costs? Manufacturing overhead is any expense not directly tied to a factory's production. Therefore, the indirect costs in manufacturing overhead can also be called factory overhead or production overhead. Outsourcing and globalization of manufacturing allows companies to reduce costs, benefits consumers with lower-cost goods and services, and causes economic expansion that reduces unemployment and increases productivity and job creation. – Larry Elder So, this article focuses on some highly effective overhead cost reduction methods that would help you build a healthy budget for the following year. Manufacturing Overhead Costs: What Is Included? Everything or everyone within the factory that isn't actively producing items should be considered overhead. The following are some of the variables that are considered overhead costs: Depreciation of equipment and productionfacilities Taxes, insurance, and utilities Supervisors, maintenance, quality control, and other on-site personnel who aren't producing signs Indirect supply from light bulbs to toilet paper is also included in the overhead cost. Manufacturing Overhead Costs: What Is Excluded? Everything or everyone within or outside the factory that is actively producing items should be excluded from the overhead costs. Factory overhead does not include the following: Product materials Employee costs for those making the goods daily External administrative overhead, such as a satellite office or human resources Costs associated with C-suite employees Expenses associated with sales and marketing - include pay, travel, and advertising How to Calculate Overhead Costs in Manufacturing To know the manufacturing overhead requires calculating the manufacturing overhead rate. The formula to calculate the manufacturing overhead rate i.e. MOR is basic yet vital. To begin, determine your overall manufacturing overhead expenses. Then, add up all the monthly indirect expenditures that keep manufacturing running smoothly. Then you can calculate the Manufacturing Overhead Rate (MOR). This statistic shows you your monthly overhead costs as a percentage. To find this value, divide Total Manufacturing Overhead Cost (TMOC) by Total Monthly Sales (TMS) and multiply it by 100. The final formula will be: Assume your manufacturing overhead expensesare $50,000 and your monthly sales are $300,000. You get.167 when you divide $50,000 by $300,000. Then increase that by 100 to get your monthly overhead rate of 16.7%. This means your monthly overhead expenditures will be 16.7% of your monthly income. Being able to forecast and develop better solutions to decrease production overhead. Five Ways to Reduce Manufacturing Overhead Costs A variety of strategies may be used by manufacturing organizations to reduce their overhead costs. Here is a summary of some of the most important methods for reducing your manufacturing overhead costs. Value Stream Mapping – A Production Plant Process Layout A value stream map depicts the entire manufacturing process of your plant. Everything from raw material purchase through client delivery is detailed here. The value stream map provides you with a complete picture of the profit-making process. This overhead cost-cuttingmethod is listed first for a reason because every effort to reduce manufacturing overhead costsstarts with a value stream map. Lean manufacturingis also one of the techniques of eliminating unnecessary time, staff, and work that is not necessary for profit and has gained undue favor in the manufacturing process. You must first create a value stream map of the whole manufacturing process for this technique to work. Once the lean manufacturing precept is established, the following strategies for decreasingmanufacturing overhead expenses can be examined. Do Not Forget Your Back Office Management Before focusing on factory floor cost reduction techniques, remember that your back offices, where payment processing and customer contacts occur, may also be simplified and increase profitability. Fortunately, automation can achieve this profitability at a cheap cost. Manufacturers increasingly use robotic process automation (RPA) to sell directly to customers rather than rely on complex supply networks. This automation eliminates costly human mistakes in data input and payment processing by automatically filling forms with consumer data. Moreover, the time saved from manual data input (and rectifying inevitable human errors) equates to decreased labor expenses and downtime. Automating Your Manufacturing Plant For a long time, manufacturers saw factory automation as a game-changer. As a result, several plant owners make radical changes in their operations using cutting-edge technologydespite knowing it realistically. Over-investing in technologies unfamiliar to present industrial personnel might be deemed a technology blunder. Investing in new technology that doesn't generate value or is too hard for current staff to use might be a mistake. It's usually best to start small when implementing newtechnology in manufacturing. Using collaborative robots in production is one way to get started with automation. They are inexpensive, need little software and hardware, and may help employees with mundane, repeated chores that gobble up bandwidth. It is a low-cost entry point into automation that saves labor expenses and opens the door for further automation investments when opportunities are available. Reuse Other Factory Equipment and Supplies Check with other factories to see if they have any unused equipment or supplies that may be "redeployed" to your manufacturing plant. Redeployment would save you time and money by eliminating the need to look for and install new equipment while lowering your overhead costs. Outsourcing a fully equipped factory, equipment, or even staff can also assist in lowering overhead costssince you will only pay for what you utilize. As such, it is a viable method to incorporate into your production process. Employ an In-house Maintenance Expert An in-house repair technician can service your equipment for routine inspections, preventive maintenance, and minor repairs. This hiring decision might save money on unforeseen repair expenses or work fees for an outside repair provider. Having someone on-site who can do emergency repairs may save you money if your equipment breaks after business hours. Final Words Manufacturing overhead costis an essential aspect of every manufacturing company's budget to consider. Smart manufacturingis intended to be productive, efficient, and cost-effective while effectively managing production expenditures. Calculating the manufacturing overheadcan provide you with a better understanding of your company's costs and how to minimize them. Depending on the conditions or geographical needs, each manufacturing plant's overhead expensesmay vary. As a result, identify your production overhead costsand concentrate on reducing and improving them. FAQ What are manufacturing overheads? Manufacturing overhead cost is a sum of all indirect expenses incurred during production. Manufacturing overhead expenses usually include depreciation of equipment, employee salaries, and power utilized to run the equipment. What is a decent overhead percentage? When a business is functioning successfully, an overhead ratio of less than 35 % is considered favorable. How can I calculate the cost of manufacturing per unit? The overall manufacturing cost per unit is determined by dividing the total production expenses by the total number of units produced for a particular time.

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Manufacturing Branding: A Ground-breaking Method for Increasing Product Sales

Article | January 19, 2022

Manufacturing branding is a relatively recent trend that is gaining traction in the manufacturing sector. Brand marketing is important for manufacturers in a variety of ways, including increasing business revenue and establishing product credibility within their target consumer group. 82% of people feel better about a brand after reading personalized content. 94% of customers are inclined to develop a relationship with a brand that is completely transparent. 13% of consumers would spend 31-50% more on your products or services if they believed your business was making a positive difference in the world. In this article, we will look at the advantages of branding to a manufacturer as well as how brand manufacturing may be established. What Difference Can Manufacturer Branding Make? "A brand is a voice, and a product is a souvenir" -Lisa Gansky, an American entrepreneur, writer, and speaker Your Name and Work Will Be Publicized Branding is the process of enriching your products with a visual, linguistic, and conceptual identity that differentiates them from competitors. Ideally, factory branding would help you reach out to your potential clients by making them aware of your company's name and becoming familiar with what you do. Brand Marketing Builds Emotional Bonds Manufacturing branding is more than merely developing an image in the minds of your customers. It's about telling a story that strikes a chord with them.Once you've defined your message and the motivation for developing your products, customers will be able to connect with you more easily.Relatability is critical in an era of ever-changing trends and consumer behavior. Your clients will simply switch over to another firm that provides the same service and fosters a sense of belonging. The emotional value of your manufacturing brands should not be underestimated. Building Trust Is Easier with a Strong Brand A manufacturing brand that wishes to remain in business for the long run will communicate with its customers. The customers understand that you would not connect or share your story unless you intended to grow with them. However, this strategy works only if the factory branding is well-executed and demonstrates its authenticity. Modern customers can easily notice dishonesty or the use of a phony character. Increase of Distribution Channels Working on your manufacturing branding will help you expand your sales. Just make sure you have the necessary tools to sell via different channels. Creating a memorable brand doesn't merely attract customers. It will also assist in attracting potential distributors who may otherwise be reluctant to be your distributing partners. Your ability to negotiate quality agreements with resellers and reps will increase when your manufacturing brand is well-known. It simplifies their lives and saves them money on marketing. This is a domino effect issue. More distributors mean more exposure for your business, but a delicate balance must be maintained. Your personal connection with clients may be lost if you abdicate brand responsibility. So, provide superior customer service to maintain a connection with your customers. Profit Margin Is Increased A strong manufacturing brand will allow you to sell at greater prices. People will be happy to pay for a quality brand that they can trust. But what would really set you apart from the rest is if you could beat private companies at branding. Private brands are the house brands of shops and huge resellers who offer cheaper copies of your goods. Customers should be able to tell the price difference between a factory brand and a private brand. "You can’t build a reputation on what you are going to do." – Henry Ford, the founder of the Ford Motor Company How to Build an Effective Manufacturing Brand? Identify Your Intended Audience Identifying your target demographic is the first step in intentionally building your brand. You can build a buyer persona of the typical user of your product or by analyzing your current consumer base. Consider their age, gender, industry, occupation, education, interests, etc. To grow your brand and market your products more effectively, you need to create a buyer persona. Conduct Competitor Analysis Following that, it would be advisable to analyze your competitors' brands. In various markets and with companies in general, there are many brand features that are unique and widely utilized, and it would be counterproductive for a corporation to highlight those elements. For example, many B2B companies take pride in their product quality, reliability factor, and personal touch. When everyone is highlighting the same brand qualities, you will need a unique approach to stand out. Developing a Central Theme A brand's central theme acts as a pillar. It summarizes your company's principles and objectives in a single statement, or perhaps one word. It's a lot simpler to come up with marketing ideas and campaigns that connect with your company's philosophy and seem like a part of the brand. Developing Your Brand's Individuality Now, imagine your brand as a person, considering the preceding phases. You may gather every piece of information possible. The more specific you are, the more solidity your brand identity will have. Brand themes may help you develop your brand's personality and story. Using themes, you may classify individuals and fictional characters based on a common set of personality qualities. These are commonly used in psychology and marketing. Creating a Visual Brand for Your Business Finally, create a visual illustration for your organization. This includes producing unique logos that represent your company's beliefs, selecting colors, designing your website and blog, and everything that can be related to visualizing your corporate brand. Get familiar with geometric and color psychology, look at what prominent brands and other firms in your industry have done, and get on board with a good graphic designer to create the materials. Best Channels for Manufacturers' Branding Many businesses utilize social media, blogging with SEO suggestions, and email newsletters to boost their online presence. Content is the most important consideration when adopting these marketing methods. Hire good specialists to assist you in understanding your buyer's persona and developing buyer-centric content to capture their attention and generate potential leads for your business.An active social media presence enables you to increase the number of followers on your social media sites and reach millions of people via these platforms. Furthermore, you can start weekly newsletters to keep your subscribers updated on the latest developments, campaigns, and how you're working to develop the best goods possible for your target groups. Final Words Effective branding for manufacturing is what you need to increase your company's popularity and demand in a competitive market. Once you've established yourself as a known brand in your sector, you may pursue manufacturer branding, which is used by many well-known manufacturers such as Ford, Nestle, Coca-Cola, and Apple. Use the above-mentioned techniques to create your own brand and stay ahead of the curve in your industry. FAQ What are the four elements of branding? A successful brand requires a strong brand identity, brand image, brand culture, and brand personality, all of which must be present. What is the manufacturer’s brand? A product that has the manufacturer’s name on it or is used to market and sell the product. What is manufacturers’ label? The manufacturers label provides name and address of the manufacturer or distributor and relevant hazard warnings.

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WithoutWire Inventory Sciences (formerly Appolis) provides Inventory Management Solutions that include Warehouse Management Solutions (WMS). We improve inventory efficiency and streamline optimization–all by applying an unmatched scientific rigor. For distribution and manufacturing organizations looking for better, WithoutWire will deliver.