Wohlers Associates, Inc., Fort Collins, Colorado, USA, has published its Wohlers Report 2019, the twenty-fourth annual installment of its industry-leading report on Additive Manufacturing. The global study reports on the growth, development and future of AM materials, applications, systems, services, design, software, patents, startups, standards, investment and research.
The 369-page report includes wide-ranging data on AM materials development and consumption. The overall materials segment of the industry is said to have seen record growth in 2018. Revenue from metals grew an estimated 41.9%, continuing a five-year streak of more than 40% growth each year. This strong activity among materials suppliers and customers is thought to indicate the increasing use of AM for production applications.
The report also highlights notable AM-related activities in many industries, including aerospace. Wohlers Associates collected insights from companies including Airbus, Boeing, Honeywell Aerospace and United Technologies Corp to gain perspective on using AM to produce end-use parts. These companies, along with BMW, Deutsche Bahn, FIT, Jabil, Oerlikon, UPS, the U.S. Marine Corps, and others shared emerging trends from their vantage points. Among these trends are knowledge and skills development, cyber security, post-process automation, materials development, partnerships, and industry standards.
New and expanded features of Wohlers Report 2019 include:
- Benefits and challenges of designing for AM
- Listing of 107 early-stage investments valued at nearly $1.3 billion
- Production, pricing, and use of metal powders
- Expert reports from 32 countries
- Tables of systems, third-party materials, software tools, and emerging developments
Wohlers Associates tracked growth and sales of 177 producers of industrial AM systems, which are those priced at $5,000 or more. This is nearly one third more than the 135 system manufacturers reported in 2018. While industrial system manufacturers were said to have grown notably, desktop AM systems (those that sell for under $5,000) saw significant decline in annual growth. The overall AM market continued to grow, with many new players, hundreds of millions of dollars in investments, and many new products designed for AM.
Wohlers Report 2019 is said to draw upon the expertise of eighty authors and contributors located in thirty-two countries. Wohlers Associates also received input from 127 service providers, seventy-one manufacturers of industrial systems, and thirty producers of desktop AM systems and third-party materials globally.