4D printing is one of the emerging technologies which may be attributed to an object which changes its shape over time. 4D printing alludes to taking a 3D printed object and adding the ability of transformation by embedding a program directly into the materials by themselves. 4D printing adds time to the length, width and height of the objects. The 4th dimension in 4D printing refers to the ability for material objects to alter their shape or appearance over time.
Researchers are primarily focusing on 4D printing materials, emphasizing mainly at the microscopic level. Technologies such as shape memory alloys are being produced, in which a temperature change brings about a change in shape of the objects. Newer technologies are also making use of pressurized fluids, electro active polymers, chemicals and smart materials. The report study also comprises of the demand analysis of this particular market on a global and regional scale for a five-year period of 2016-2021, both in terms of volume (Units) and revenue ($M). Need for reduction in manufacturing & process costs coupled with increasing regulations on reducing construction operational costs has been driving the market growth. However, high cost is hampering the penetration and market growth of 4D printing market.
The market is estimated based on the key attributes such as the power in the hands of producers and consumers, analysis on the inter-industry rivalry, and threats from substitutes and new entrants. The report also includes segmentation based on materials, end user industries and geography. Types of materials used include smart metal alloys, self-healing polymers, dielectric elastomers and programmable materials. The programmable materials are expected to provide the largest contribution in the global market. Based on end user industry, aerospace, military and defense, automotive and biomedical are considered to be the most prominent end users of this industry.
The 4D printing market has also been segmented based on geographical region: Americas, Europe, Asia-pacific and Middle-East & Africa. These geographies are further classified into countries holding prominent share in the 4D printing market for the forecast period. North American is the dominant region for 4D printing market with U.S leading the charge, the major funding agencies being US ARO and DOD. However, by the upcoming years, Europe and Asia-Pacific are also expected to have a remarkable contribution in the 4D printing market.
Competitive landscape for each of the product types is highlighted and market players are profiled with attributes of company overview, financial overview, business strategies, product portfolio and recent developments. Market shares of the key players for 2016 are provided. Drivers, challenges and constraints which control the profitability of an industry is also analyze in the report.