How Companies Use 3D Rendering and 3D Printing Services to Reduce Material Waste


This post explains how companies use 3D rendering and 3D printing services to reduce material waste. 3D rendering boasts some significant attributes of being environmentally friendly. Let’s look at how design firms use 3D rendering services to minimize material waste. Whether in industrial design or manufacturing, healthcare, or aerospace, adding 3D rendering as a part of your business strategy can be a big step in the right direction regarding sustainable practices and environmental sensitivity. These include the production of less waste, reduction of carbon footprint, and the use of fewer raw materials and less energy.

One benefit of 3D rendering as far as sustainability is concerned is that images are generated to create a photorealistic or lifelike model. An experienced 3D product modeling company can produce prototypes, models, molds, tools, or finished products digitally before physically adding materials and making waste. For example, you can develop many digital prototypes of a door hinge and decide on the final design without wasting materials on physical prototypes.

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3D rendering and its circular economy potential 

Sustainable manufacturing doesn’t begin and end with the manufacturing phase. 3D rendering as a sustainable practice impacts the whole product lifecycle, from 3D product design to recycling. Using 3D rendering to model products saves materials, money, and time. The 3D rendering expert then uses 3D printing to produce a prototype that only utilizes the needed materials rather than forming clay, molding plastic, machining metal, or carving foam. There is an increased focus on recycling, remanufacturing, refurbishment, repair, and reducing the use of raw materials to lower carbon emissions, pollution, and waste.

For corporations to become more environmentally friendly and sustainable, more effort is required to address waste, pollution, excessive raw materials, and energy consumption. Smaller companies also play a role in recycling, making purchasing decisions based on sustainability, and shifting to greener office practices like reducing energy use.

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Product and concept design companies that 3D render products before manufacturing use fewer materials, and recycled raw materials can be used to produce the final products. In a hopeful circular economy where things can be created and recycled. Even though this goal hasn’t been achieved, 3D rendering before prototyping and manufacturing allow companies to develop products that make less waste, save on raw materials, and other significant environmentally friendly benefits. Reducing waste is especially important as more continents shift to environmentally friendly practices. 

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More efficient design

3D rendering can produce parts with features and shapes that cannot be achieved with other manufacturing methods. You can redesign your product or part to use less material and make it more efficient. Products that used to have several components can now be rendered as one, reducing labor, time, and material. Manufacturing and design firms that use 3D rendering services can render intricate parts and moving assemblies like fuel injectors manufactured as a single piece rather than several components. It means less energy is used with less waste product at the same time.

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Eliminate inventory

3D design professionals allow consumers to see products before purchasing them – reducing the risk that the product will be returned. For example, eyewear companies allow clients to try on 3D rendered eye frames before purchasing. The eyeglass frames can also be customized and designed according to the wearer and made on-demand to eliminate stock. Overstocked inventory has been a serious concern in the eyewear industry. The dream scenario is to provide the latest eyewear designs as 3D renderings for clients to try online. Then various materials can produce 3D printed glasses on demand to reduce revenue-threatening stock risk and wastage.

Manufacture parts locally

3D printing services allow you to produce products, prototypes, and parts locally instead. Sourcing parts locally can reduce the environmental effects of trucks, ships, and planes. For example, with disruptions to global supply chains, local companies using 3D medical device product design services sprang into action to produce respiratory parts, face masks, and other PPE or personal protective equipment for their communities’ first responders. 

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Spare parts and repairability

3D printing services can cheaply and quickly produce repair parts for out-of-production or unique equipment, keeping old vehicles and machines off the scrap heap. It also eliminates the need for more energy and raw materials to manufacture new industrial components and devices. With a mere push of a button, design engineering professionals can 3D print a part that might have no longer been in manufacturing for decades. Most militaries, for example, are 3D printing vehicle repair parts to lengthen the lifespan of vehicles.

Airbus subsidiary Satair also recently 3D-printed a flight-worthy and certified aircraft space part that can no longer be procured from its original supplier and would have been too expensive to manufacture using traditional methods. Several technologies for metal additive manufacturing, like laser metal deposition, can repair worn-out metal parts in cases where welding and other conventional repair methods aren’t applicable. Laser metal deposition helped save millions of dollars for aerospace and heavy industry by allowing companies to repair parts rather than produce new ones.

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Quieter and smaller factories

A 3D printer can replace various traditional manufacturing equipment pieces because this can print an extensive selection of parts in different materials. The need for less equipment can mean fewer emissions and smaller factories. The 3d rendering company can also be closer to the specific point of need or in urban centers instead of being away from residences or an industrial park. Also, in terms of noise pollution, there is no denying that 3D printers are significantly quieter compared to traditional equipment for manufacturing.

Streamline manufacturing

3D printing services require fewer processes, parts, and tools than traditional manufacturing, eliminating most of the energy, equipment, and labor required. Unlike other forms of design and manufacturing, 3D printing is a computer-to-part method. There are no molds, tooling, and minimal work between the digital 3D rendered design and the production process. 

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Use fewer raw materials

Consolidating parts through 3D rendering and design reduces the raw materials used for production. Parts are lighter, emit fewer greenhouse gases, and are more fuel efficient during transportation to the end user.

How Cad Crowd can assist

Cad Crowd stands apart from traditional design companies and outsourcing firms. Instead of merely providing a platform for clients to hire freelancers, we go one step further and connect clients directly with talented freelance designers who have been vetted and are pre-qualified.