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Theater Talk

Propelling Digital Transformation with 3D Printing

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Propelling Digital Transformation with 3D Printing

Additive processes can help you differentiate from the competition and reimagine your business



Additive manufacturing (AM), often known as 3D printing, has been around since the 1980s, but for decades it was prohibitively complex and expensive, a process explored only in well-funded research labs. Today, it’s creating new possibilities in manufacturing and Diana Verdugo of Formlabs shares three ways that AM is being used by companies large and small. Her first example, Commute, is a start-up using additive processes to rapidly and cost-effectively design, prototype, and produce small runs of charging stations for e-scooters, wheelchairs, and other micro-mobility vehicles. Next, she explains how Ashley Furniture is using additive for rapid tooling. Instead of outsourcing the job to vendors, they have trained warehouse employees to design and print jigs and fixtures whenever needed, reducing changeover times and shaving costs by 50%. Finally, she shares Hasbro’s embrace of mass customization. The toy giant is differentiating itself by offering a “selfie series,” which enables customers to scan their heads, then create a unique action figure with their face. With additive technology becoming increasingly affordable and accessible, Verdugo says, every manufacturer should be exploring how they can use it to create unique value in the marketplace.

About the speaker

Diana Verdugo leads partnerships and community at Formlabs. Her focus is on strategy in the digital design and manufacturing industry, growing the user community through digital and experiential activities, and increasing representation through DE&I strategies. Verdugo holds a degree in industrial and operations engineering from the University of Michigan, and an MBA from ESADE Business School in Barcelona.          

Related learning

Learn more about the possibilities for 3D printing with these AU sessions:  

How Can We Design Sustainability into Additive Manufacturing? 

From light-weighting vehicles to reduced material consumption, learn how additive processes can help you reduce waste and decarbonize your products. This class showcases design technologies and case studies that show you how to avoid common pitfalls and adopt AM processes in your company.  

Using Additive Manufacturing Technology via Autodesk Fusion 360 and Inventor 

Metal additive and hybrid manufacturing can offer tangible advantages in product performance due to the design freedoms the process enables, manufacturing sustainability, supply lead time, and component cost. With the connection between Inventor and Autodesk Fusion 360, it’s easier than ever to explore the benefits of AM.  

Generative Design to Print: An Autodesk Fusion 360 Industrial Additive MasterClass 

The team from GKN Aerospace shows you how to explore possible print orientations and material possibilities using generative design, then create highly customizable support templates and export directly to a powder bed additive printer for manufacturing.