One significant driver of growth within the rapid prototyping industry is the continued development of personal healthcare products. Over 98% of hearing aids produced worldwide are now 3D printed, because of the significant savings in time, cost, and accuracy that comes from producing each unique model in this manner.
CNC manufacturing As personal medical devices become more widespread, fueled by a growing medical robotics industry, rapid prototyping services, and small-batch manufacturing will only become more important, as precise fit for custom assistive robotic devices such as exoskeletons is key to their performance.
In the aviation industry, rapid prototyping through CNC manufacturing and 3D printing has decreased waiting times in production cycles and reduced the costs associated with producing parts of limited quantities, by removing the need for assembly line changes and frequent retooling.
Similar cost-saving benefits have been found in the robotics industry. When producing plastic or aluminum parts or protective casings for initial robot prototypes, manufacturers can place orders for these custom pieces, submit a CAD file, and have them delivered within a week. As a result, prototype testing and checks for proper fit can occur sooner, saving time and money.