Title: Past, present and future of rapid prototyping

Authors: Terry Wohlers

Addresses: Wohlers Associates, Inc., Oak Ridge Business Park, 1511 River Oak Drive, Fort Collins, CO 80525, USA

Abstract: This paper provides an overview of the information published in Wohlers Report 2003, a 270-page market study. The report addresses many aspects of rapid prototyping, including: industries served; applications; revenues; unit sales; forecasts. It also provides current information on industry trends and developments in the areas of service providers, advanced approaches to tooling, system manufacturers and technology advances in the USA, Europe, Asia and other parts of the world. The report covers research and development activities, growth trends in CAD solid modelling, rapid prototyping materials, medical modelling, rapid manufacturing and reverse engineering. Wohlers Report 2003 concludes with a discussion of the future of rapid prototyping – where it is headed and what is expected – to assist in strategic and tactical planning.

Keywords: rapid prototyping; rapid tooling; rapid manufacturing; 3D printing; solid freeform fabrication; CAD; solid modeling; medical modeling; RP materials; layered manufacturing; reverse engineering.

DOI: 10.1504/IJPD.2004.005710

International Journal of Product Development, 2004 Vol.1 No.2, pp.147 - 154

Published online: 24 Nov 2004 *

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