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Rapid prototyping enabled by Additive Manufacturing, high-density storage of hydrogen in metal hydride tanks: the team at GKN Sinter Metals is bringing game-changing technologies to life. We’ll keep you updated on the latest trends and applications.

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Additive Manufacturing

EDUCATIONAL AM: Metal 3D printing applications

We are launching our new series "Educational AM" to discuss aspects and advantages of the Additive Manufacturing industry. In our first post of the series, let's talk about the applications of metal 3D printing:

In 3D printing, there are three major areas of application: prototyping, tooling and manufacturing - each of which demonstrate the strengths of additive manufacturing 3D printing. These applications bring together highly efficient, cost-effective parts, which can be adapted at any time to customer requirements.

Below, we describe these 3D printing applications.

 General areas of application

  • Rapid prototyping: A cost-effective manufacturing of individual parts or a small series for product development or research purposes.
  • Rapid tooling: Manufacturing of tools, or tool components, in tool or mould making.
  • Rapid manufacturing: Fast and flexible manufacturing of parts using tool-free production directly from CAD data.


 Specific examples of areas of industrial application

 Automotive industry:

Car manufacturers can derive great benefit from metal 3D printing, especially in developing prototypes. The advantage lies in being able to produce prototypes quickly with lower cost. This makes the expensive and time-consuming traditional route for prototypes a process of the past. In the future it will be possible to address customers’ needs more intuitively with this flexible production method.


The high degree of design freedom in metal 3D printing simplifies the process of manufacturing complex production-related designs. By modifying existing components, bionically-designed parts can be produced lighter and more cost-effectively.


Because of its ability to produce complex geometries, metal 3D printing is particularly suited for functional parts like prosthetic devices. The additive production method offers great scope for individual fabrications which have applications in everyday use as well as in elite sports.

To learn more on Additive Manufacturing, read our recent blog post here:

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