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When you want to hear some music, there’s a good chance you’ve used an online streaming service such as Spotify. You just select a song and click to play.
What if it were just as easy to do the same thing when you need a part to keep your packaging machine running? “What-if,” it turns out, is right now.
A new click-to-print system is now in use that can bring your packaging operations an additive manufacturing (3D printing) solution that combines the simplicity of music streaming with the sci-fi conveyance of “using a replicator from Star Trek,” says Marcus Schindler, supply chain director for Gerhard Schubert GmbH, packaging machine builder for Nestlé, Unilever, Roche, Italian confectioner Ferrero, and other consumer brands.
Major benefits touted by proponents of additive manufacturing include reduced tooling costs; greater control and innovation over part designs; greater manufacturing precision; faster design revisions/iterations; shorter lead times and reduced deployment time; and less waste for greater environmental sustainability. As the method matures, the price/performance ratio points to more and more solutions that mate the right materials and printers to provide new packaging line solutions.
“We are very convinced that on-demand manufacturing, and distributing manufacturing …
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