• Breaking the mould

    Breaking the mould

    Titanium medical implants and aerospace parts are just some of the areas set to be improved through South Africa’s Department of Science and Technology’s (DST) newly launched 3D printing strategy.

    The technique, also known as ‘additive manufacturing’ (due to its process of building an object by adding ultra-thin layers of material one by one), is already used to produce plastic prototypes for engineers and designers, thanks to public-sector investment in the technology’s R&D since 2014 totalling nearly US$25 million.

    With the new strategy, South Africa seeks to capitalise on new manufacturing technologies as a way of positioning the country in subsectors with high-growth potential in additive manufacturing. According to an AFKInsider report, the DST plans to put an additional US$2.12 million into a collaborative R&D programme for 3D printing infrastructure.

    6 September 2016
    Image: Gallo/Getty Images