3D Printing in Construction – Thematic Research

There is huge potential for 3D printing growth in construction. Recent innovations in China and the US have shown that 3D printing may be scaled up to produce housing and commercial buildings that can be delivered in days rather than months. The use of 3D printing for rapid prototyping and the production of architectural models is becoming widespread, as the cost of materials and hardware reduces, along with specialized software which supports BIM and CAD and can be used for 3D production.


This report explores 3D printing technology and its use cases in old and new contexts as well, most notably in construction and medicine, and the power sector.

It identifies the winners and losers dominating the current technology theme, across the hardware, software, and services domains.

It identifies power utilities and equipment manufacturers who are witnessing a huge opportunity with 3D printing.

Key Highlights

By 2025, 3D printing, or additive manufacturing, will be a $32bn industry, rising to over $60bn by 2030. The compound annual growth rate (CAGR) between 2018 and 2025 will be 16%, according to GlobalData estimates, with software growing slightly faster than hardware, materials and services.

Yet behind the optimism, competition and casualties are increasing: UK powder maker Metalysis went into administration in June 2019 before being rescued by Power Resources, a mining company; SLM Solutions, a German manufacturer of 3D metal printers, had a poor first half of 2019, selling a third of the machines it sold in the first half of 2018 with revenues down 45%; and Organovo is considering its strategic options after biological performance issues with its 3D-printed liver tissues.

3D printing has always been closely associated with prototyping and short production runs, but now it is becoming a key part of the manufacturing mix alongside injection molding and computer numerical control machining. The use of polymers – particularly plastics – in 3D printing still exceeds metals, but the gap is narrowing, and metals could outstrip polymers from 2021

Reasons to buy

The report identifies leading players in the 3D printing sector, across the hardware, software, and services domains.

It provides a technology briefing of how additive manufacturing processes have been developed over the last 25 years.

It identifies the main trends in the 3D printing industry over the next 12 to 24 months.

It provides an overview of the 3D printing value chain categorized across three core layers – hardware, software, and services.

The report analyses the technology theme, with use cases, market size forecasts, competitive analysis, 3D printing in power, mergers and acquisitions, and a timeline.

The report looks at the key industries impacted by 3D printing and estimate roughly how far away we are from significant industry disruption.

The report looks at construction sector companies that were early adopters of industrial 3D printing and their activities.

Companies mentioned

Desktop Metal, GE Additive, Markforged, EOS, HP, 3D Systems, Ultimaker, EnvisionTEC, Stratasys

Table of Contents


Technology briefing


The eight different types of 3D printing technology

The science behind 3D printing

The technology of materials

4D printing

The cost of 3D printing


Technology trends

Regulatory trends

Macroeconomic trends

Construction trends

Industry analysis

Market size and growth forecasts

Competitive analysis

Mergers and acquisitions


Value chain





How 3D printing is disrupting industries




Consumer goods







Public companies

Private companies

Construction companies

Who’s Who in 3D Printing

Classification by value chain segment

Classification by 3D printing technology


Appendix: Our thematic research methodology


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