Close menu


Sunderland Repository records the research produced by the University of Sunderland including practice-based research and theses.

How 3D-Printing achieves Sustainability

Wu, Haishang, Naveed, Nida and Hamid, Mehrabi (2023) How 3D-Printing achieves Sustainability. In: 3D-Printing and Sustainable Product Development. CRC Press, Taylor and Francis, pp. 21-37. ISBN 9781003306238

Item Type: Book Section


Sustainability has been one of the most crucial and imminent missions directly tied to human life, mainly in the aspects of environment, society and economy. In recent decades, pollution, waste, CO2 emission, climate anomalies and energy exploitation are some serious environmental issues threatening sustainability, corresponding with social and economic hazards such has unemployment, enlarged discrepancy, monopolization, unnecessary migration and heightened costs. In industry, greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, carbon footprint (CFP), cost, materials yields, transportation, supply chain, efficiency, energy consumption, flexibility and lead time are some key factors that impact sustainability. To reach the goal of sustainable manufacturing, it is crucial to conduct evaluations toward technology, process, application and human factors, via multiple entities such as stakeholders, government, designers, manufacturers, end-users and the general public. Three-dimensional printing (3DP, additive manufacturing) is an emerging star toward sustainable manufacturing since recent decades. The new technology has multiple capabilities including reduction in material use, energy consumption and costs; empowerment toward individual manufacturers and home-based manufacturing; as well as allowing flexible, complicated and niche products to be materialized in short time. In terms of environment sustainability, the high material yield by 3DP manufacturing allows industries to consume less material. For individuals, its ability toward initiating business in local areas generates huge impact in simplifying supply chains, by which the minimized transportation contributes to reduction of greenhouse gas GHG emissions and energy use. By supporting households to materialize or amend items in use, it avoids unnecessary needs of new products, effectively reducing wastes. For social sustainability, 3DP is a humanist technology capable of fulfilling the needs for niche, customized items, such as medical or technical usages. In case of emergency, its agile performance allows swift supply of items, to meet sudden surge of large needs. Moreover, it alleviates the excessive dependency of individuals toward the market, transforming consumers into prosumers. As for economic sustainability, the reduced cost and time greatly benefit industries, while individuals and home-based businesses are enabled manufacturing with low cost and high flexibility. In a nutshell, 3DP assists the new “Industrial Revolution” toward environmental, societal and economic sustainability, with low barriers for beginners, versatile functions for designers, agile support for small local businesses, and powerful apparatus for industry. In this chapter, the nature of 3DP’s additive characteristics and advantages such as agility, and unnecessary assembly and molding are discussed. Furthermore, applicability and enhancement strategy are addressed.

[img] PDF (How 3D-Printing achieves Sustainability)
Book Chapter- How 3D Printing achieves Sustainability.pdf - Published Version
Restricted to Registered users only

Download (220kB) | Request a copy

More Information

Related URLs:
Depositing User: Nida Naveed


Item ID: 16747
ISBN: 9781003306238

Users with ORCIDS

ORCID for Nida Naveed: ORCID iD
ORCID for Mehrabi Hamid: ORCID iD

Catalogue record

Date Deposited: 21 Nov 2023 12:02
Last Modified: 21 Nov 2023 12:02


Author: Nida Naveed ORCID iD
Author: Mehrabi Hamid ORCID iD
Author: Haishang Wu
Author: Haishang Wu
Author: Nida Naveed
Author: Mehrabi Hamid

University Divisions

Faculty of Technology


Engineering > Mechanical Engineering

Actions (login required)

View Item (Repository Staff Only) View Item (Repository Staff Only)