3D printing market worth $4.45 billion by 2016

taipeiThe market value for 3D printing could zoom past $4.45 billion as soon as 2016, according to Taiwan’s Market Intelligence & Consulting Institute (MIC).

The figure is roughly double its value in 2012 at $2.15 billion – itself 22.2 percent growth from the previous year.

MIC notes that the current picture it’s a long way since the initial rounds of investment into 3D printing in the 80s, including from companies like 3D Systems, Stratasys and Helisys. But an injection of R&D cash in recent years has been progressive for the technology and lead to an expansion in the application market.

Now, thanks to R&D progress, a wide range of materials can be printed, including metals, ceramics, resins, plastics, nylon, PVC, ABS plastic and wax.

Since these developments, 3D printing has found itself being used for the production of metal modules, personalised goods, automobile and airplane parts, medical apparatus, gadgets, consumer goods and jewelry.

MIC points out that governments are expressing their support for advances in 3D printing and other big players, including in the Asia Pacific region, have entered the scene.