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Overview of China's additive manufacturing industry development status

May 19,2023


The 19th National Congress of the Communist Party of China put forward the development strategy of "accelerating the building of a strong manufacturing country and accelerating the development of advanced manufacturing". Additive manufacturing (also known as "3D printing"), as one of the representative technologies, has been included in the planning of key national development areas. By promoting the development of the additive manufacturing industry, the whole industrial chain system featuring the coordinated development of the real economy, scientific and technological innovation, modern services and industrial clusters will be formed, and "Made in China" will be promoted to a new height of "Made in China".

I. Overview of China's additive manufacturing industry development status

(1)The importance of developing additive manufacturing industry

In February 2012, the US National Science and Technology Council released the National Strategic Plan for Advanced Manufacturing.

In March 2012, Obama announced a $1 billion National Manufacturing Innovation Network Initiative,

In these strategic plans, additive manufacturing technology is listed as one of the most critical manufacturing technologies in the United States in the future.

There is no doubt that the development of additive manufacturing has risen to the level of national strategic development.

(2) Additive manufacturing is the realistic demand to promote industrial transformation and upgrading

Additive manufacturing technology can meet the major needs of rapid manufacturing and repair of parts and adapt to the new requirements of the "four fast" of modern war: rapid response, rapid manufacturing, rapid repair and rapid recovery of combat effectiveness. It has been promoted and applied in various fields and widely penetrated into navigation

Aerospace, gas turbines, unmanned aerial vehicles, weapons and equipment, biomedicine, automobile manufacturing, culture and education.



(3) Additive manufacturing is an important support for innovation-driven development

Additive manufacturing is suitable for the rapid manufacturing industry that produces complex structure, personalized and diversified products. According to the application needs, the optimal design scheme can be adopted to achieve the best product function and economic value, so that the design can get rid of the constraints of traditional technology "manufacturability", release huge space for innovative design, and bring subversive progress for product design and manufacturing.


(4) Additive manufacturing is a reliable platform to build a new manufacturing model

Additive manufacturing brings a new mode of distributed manufacturing. Through the network platform, it can realize the mode of production, personalized order, maker design, and even the integrated planning and decentralized implementation of capital. This production mode effectively realizes the maximum play of social resources, and at the same time, it brings all-round changes in concept and behavior from design to manufacturing, from service to consumption. Trigger a new mode of production and life.


2. Development status of additive manufacturing industry

In recent years, additive manufacturing technology has attracted more and more attention, and related researches in China have been advancing to the breadth and depth. With the support of projects of the Ministry of Science and Technology, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology and the State Administration of Science, Technology and Industry for National Defence, additive manufacturing is forming hardware systems in our country

System, process characteristics and quality of forming parts and other aspects have reached or approached the international advanced level, forming a situation of abreast with foreign countries.

Ii. Main problems facing the development of additive manufacturing industry

1. Import of key raw materials

Although there is a certain research basis for additive manufacturing materials in China, the batch stability is poor, the application is limited, and most of them still need to rely on imports.

2. Lack of systematic application research

Due to the restriction of traditional manufacturing process and assembly, it is urgent to use additive manufacturing technology to manufacture a large number of key special-shaped components.

3. Lack of matching heat treatment technology and equipment

The subsequent heat treatment of metal additive manufacturing components has not been paid much attention and there is little basic research.

4. Comprehensive industry standards have not yet been formed

The basis and standards for characterization, control and certification of structure morphology of components in additive manufacturing process are still blank in China. The printing effect of components can only be investigated by macroscopic factors such as dimensional accuracy, density and mechanical properties, and there is a lack of verification standards for microstructures.

5. The coordinated development of innovation platform is weak

At present, there is no effective national innovation platform for additive manufacturing industry.

6. Lack of professional talents

At present, domestic colleges and universities, technical schools and other units have not set up additive manufacturing major and related disciplines, only set up popular science nature of "interest courses" or practice. There is a shortage of specialized personnel and weak scientific research force.

3 The development trend of additive manufacturing industry

1. Replace import of key raw materials

Special raw materials for additive manufacturing are one of the most critical links in the development of industrial chain. Only when the problem of raw materials is solved, the additive manufacturing industry can develop healthily and orderly.

The super 40000r.p.m continuous intelligent self-adapting ultra-high speed plasma spinning atomization powder making system successfully developed by Top Technology breaks the foreign monopoly and embargo on Chinese high-end powder making equipment, and solves the key common technologies restricting the development of metal-based 3Dprinting powder materials. It breaks through the difficulties of localization of core powder and equipment, realizes the industrialization of high-end metal powder materials for 3D printing, promotes the progress of the overall technical level of additive manufacturing of 3D printing in China, and improves the competitiveness of China in high-end fields such as aerospace and weapons equipment.


The bottleneck problem of "low yield of fine powder" by PREP method was solved through the new process of ultra-high speed plasma rotating atomization pulverization, and the high purity and clean spherical solid powder materials such as iron base, titanium base, nickel base, cobalt base and aluminum base alloy for additive manufacturing were successfully prepared.


2. printing equipment to build a well-known international brand

It focuses on key industries such as aerospace, gas turbine, UAV, weapons and equipment, biomedicine, automobile manufacturing, culture and education, and builds a diversified 3D printing system and equipment R&D and manufacturing system covering SLS, SLM, LCD, SLA, etc., providing reliable and stable domestic autonomous controllable equipment for multiple application fields. Improve the speed, efficiency, precision and surface roughness of product molding and other indicators, and need to develop a new industrial mode, combined with the traditional manufacturing process, achieve complementary advantages, create an international famous brand, occupy the commanding heights of the international industrial 3D printing equipment industry.

3. Establish basic database

Efforts should be made to break through computer-aided design modeling technology, structural topology optimization and 3D printing docking technology, lightweight technology, 3D printing reverse engineering technology, optimize and topologically design the overall structure of heterogeneous warhead parts (including internal complex structure), so as to Save more materials and reduce their own quality, improve the overall performance of key components; It aims to break through the key technologies of laser shape control and subsequent heat treatment organization regulation, reveal the correlation law between forming process conditions and component dimension accuracy and performance index, solve the problems of precision control, defect control and performance control in component forming process, establish material -- design -- process -- equipment database, and improve the localization level of key components in additive manufacturing.

4. Improve standardization

Focusing on typical additive manufacturing processes and related market standards, explore the establishment of the "leader" working mode of additive manufacturing industry standards, determine the content and classification of the main technical indicators of additive manufacturing standards to be evaluated, formulate the evaluation method of "leader" standards for additive manufacturing, carry out the pilot work of "leader", and guide the market to preferentially select the additive based on "leader" standards We will gradually form a positive incentive mechanism for manufacturing products and services, and promote the formation of a positive cycle of coordinated development of technology innovation, standard research and industrial upgrading

5. Promote the scale of industrial application

Accelerate and promote the production and application scale of products in the whole additive manufacturing industry chain, and the products basically meet the usage demand in key areas such as aerospace, gas turbines, unmanned aerial vehicles, weapons and equipment, biomedicine, automobile manufacturing, culture and education. By 2020, The application of 3D printing key materials and equipment in aerospace, gas turbine, UAV, weapon equipment, biomedical, automobile manufacturing, culture and education and other industries is more than 100 million yuan/a, and the industrial market economy scale reaches 10 billion level. 6. Build an innovation service platform

6. Build an innovation service platform

To build an "Internet +" additive manufacturing innovation service platform, integrate industrial chain resources, attract and develop high-quality customers, and provide overall additive manufacturing technology solutions for key industrial enterprises in the country in a flexible and changeable way of cooperation.

In combination with the key development directions of 22 emerging industries and advantageous industrial chains in Changsha City, Top Technology establishes a high-end 3D printing professional comprehensive service platform, promotes the transformation and upgrading of traditional industries, and enables additive manufacturing technology to better serve aerospace, weapons, engineering machinery, Beidou navigation, automobile, medical service, rail transit and other industries.


7. Establish the first production line covering the whole industrial chain of additive manufacturing in China, and have the whole industrial chain technology of additive manufacturing from base alloy design and melting - powder preparation - additive manufacturing design and manufacturing - heat treatment - post-treatment -3D printing services.


8. In combination with the key development directions of 22 emerging industries and advantageous industrial chains in Changsha, establish a high-end 3D printing professional comprehensive service platform, promote the transformation and upgrading of traditional industries, and make additive manufacturing technology better serve aerospace, weapons, engineering machinery, Beidou navigation, automobile, medical service, rail transit and other industries.


9.In stark contrast to the traditional manufacturing process of "reducing material", additive manufacturing is based on three-dimensional digital model and makes three-dimensional entities by layering and layer-by-layer stacking of materials. It is a new technology integrating advanced manufacturing, intelligent manufacturing, green manufacturing, new materials and precision control.

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