3D Printing For Prototyping Market Size, Share, Opportunities, COVID-19 Impact, And Trends By Component (Hardware, Software, Services), By Material Type (Polymers, Metals And Alloys, Ceramics), By End-User (Aerospace, Medical, Defense, Automotive, Other End Users), By Application (Functional Prototyping, Concept Modeling), By Technology (CJP, DMLS, SLS, MJ, Others), And Geography - Forecasts From 2022 To 2027

  • Published : May 2022
  • Report Code : KSI061612106
  • Pages : 111

The global 3D printing for prototyping market is evaluated at US$7.740 billion for the year 2020, and is projected to grow at a CAGR of 29.91% to reach the market size of US$48.340 billion by the year 2027.

Prototyping is a preliminary process in which design teams turn concepts into physical form. 3D printing prototypes, also known as rapid prototyping, help save manufacturers from wasting a ton of material since 3D printing technologies are much more accurate and can work error-free. Owing to that reason, 3D printing prototypes have been known to be preferred in the aviation and automotive industries to help designers better understand their designs and the flaws that they might encounter. The Aerospace industry has also been using rapid prototyping to develop better equipment for research. The use of rapid-printing models was also studied at the NASA Marshall Space Flight Center (MSFC), and they concluded that rapid-printed models could be used to build models that can fly at supersonic speeds. 3D printing prototypes have also been known to be a preferred technology for the US Defense for better development of weapons and protective wear. The Naval Undersea Warfare Center has also tested research prototype systems related to sensors, arrays, sonar, undersea warfare, and autonomous vehicles. However, rapid prototyping has been physically inferior in strength compared to subtractive manufacturing alternatives. Methods such as CNC milling and Laser cutting might restrain the 3D printer market in terms of prototyping since they have been proven to be better than 3D printers in many ways.

The COVID-19 pandemic left a lasting effect on most manufacturers. The COVID-19 epidemic has had a detrimental influence on rapid prototyping market share since manufacturing operations were temporarily suspended throughout key industrial centres, resulting in a considerable output slowdown. Global medical supply chains were disrupted, and pharmaceutical companies were caught up in a rush for medicines and equipment due to an imbalance in supply and demand. Some manufacturers took this opportunity to use 3D printing technology to help them with the research and development of medicines and equipment.

Mologic, a UK-based developer of point-of-care diagnostic devices, used 3D printers to create prototypes of their COVID-19 test devices. They stated that 3D printers allowed them to test out products by creating prototypes with high-quality, detailed parts in significantly less time. Also, before COVID-19, most additive manufacturing printers focused on prototyping, but since the emergence of COVID-19, the industry has started developing towards full-scale manufacturing.

North America is expected to have a strong market share.

3D printing has been proven to be effective in the prototyping industry. Rapid prototyping allows companies to test out their designs and products at a very efficient rate. While industrial companies worldwide use rapid prototyping, the United States has the highest share in the industry. According to a study posted by Monroe Engineering, the rapid prototyping market in the United States was worth more than US$300 million in 2020, more than any other country. Furthermore, it is expected that this trend will continue as more manufacturing organizations in the United States adopt rapid prototyping in their operations.

In the past several years, the US Department of Defense has also been using technologies like rapid prototyping, reverse engineering, and platform modernization to help in the efficient testing and designing of weapons and protective wear. Because of the inherent benefits of competitive prototyping, the Reform Act mandates its use in large-scale defence purchase initiatives. Rapid prototyping has shortened delivery time while still delivering complete functionality after the prototype cycle by leveraging commercially accessible or pre-approved equipment and parts. Rapid prototyping has also demonstrated substantial field success in detecting improvised explosive devices (IEDs), and it is believed that new technological breakthroughs will further increase the importance of prototyping as a tool in the toolset of federal and defence leaders.

Better alternatives to 3D printing

3D printing prototypes may seem like a better alternative to traditional prototyping methods since they save time and costs. Nevertheless, while 3D printing can build objects from various substances, raw material availability is limited. Moreover, the physical qualities of 3D printed prototypes differ from those of manufactured products. This is because 3D printed parts are not constructed of solid materials; instead, they use a set of patterns that the printer uses to print layer by layer. Therefore, they do not function as well as parts manufactured from solid materials via injection moulding or CNC machining.

CNC mills serve as an alternative to traditional additive manufacturing techniques. CNC milling is a subtractive manufacturing process that can precisely cut through materials to create a printed prototype. CNC mills can cut through various items, including glass, wood, and metals. CNC mills also have the added benefit of being able to polish, slot, and grind the prototype in case post-processing is required. This makes the CNC mill more versatile for prototyping than the 3D printer. CNC milling is particularly popular in the automobile, aviation, and aerospace sectors. It's also employed in the manufacturing of industrial and medical equipment.

Another great alternative to the 3D printer is the laser cutter. Laser cutters are excellent prototype tools that take advantage of subtractive manufacturing. A laser beam is used to cut parts of various thicknesses very quickly and accurately. This technology can cut a variety of materials, including acrylic, wood, and even metal sheets. Laser cutters also benefit from laser engraving to add details to the prototype. This method is widely employed in the military, automotive, and aerospace sectors, among others, because of its extensive capabilities and improved material selection.


  • By Component
    • Hardware
    • Software
    • Services
  • By Material Type
    • Polymers
    • Metals and Alloys
    • Ceramics
    • Other
  • By End-User
    • Aerospace
    • Medical
    • Defense
    • Automotive
    • Other End Users
  • By Application
    • Functional Prototyping
    • Concept Modeling
  • By Technology
    • CJP
    • DMLS
    • SLS
    • MJ
    • Others
  • By Geography
    • North America
      • USA
      • Canada
      • Mexico
    • South America
      • Brazil
      • Argentina
      • Others
    • Europe
      • Germany
      • France
      • UK
      • Others
    • Middle East and Africa
      • Saudi Arabia
      • UAE
      • Others
    • Asia Pacific
      • China
      • India
      • Japan
      • South Korea
      • Taiwan
      • Thailand
      • Indonesia
      • Others

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

The global 3D printing for prototyping market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 29.91% during the forecast period.
North America is expected to have the largest share in the 3D printing for prototyping market.
The 3D printing for prototyping market is projected to reach a total market size of US$48.340 billion by 2027.
3D Printing For Prototyping Market was valued at US$7.740 billion in 2020.
The 3D printing for prototyping market has been segmented by component, material type, end-user, application, and geography.
1. Introduction
1.1. Market Definition
1.2. Market Segmentation

2. Research Methodology
2.1. Research Data
2.2. Assumptions

3. Executive Summary
3.1. Research Highlights

4. Market Dynamics
4.1. Market Drivers
4.2. Market Restraints
4.3. Porter’s Five Forces Analysis
4.3.1. Bargaining Power of End-Users
4.3.2. Bargaining Power of Buyers
4.3.3. Threat of New Entrants
4.3.4. Threat of Substitutes
4.3.5. Competitive Rivalry in the Industry
4.4. Industry Value Chain Analysis

5. Global 3D Printing for Prototype Market Analysis, by Component
5.1. Introduction
5.2. Hardware
5.3. Software
5.4. Services

6. Global 3D Printing for Prototype Market Analysis, by Material Type
6.1. Introduction
6.2. Plastics
6.3. Metals and Alloys
6.4. Ceramics
6.5. Other

7. Global 3D Printing for Prototype Market Analysis, by End User
7.1. Introduction
7.2. Aerospace
7.3. Medical
7.4. Defense
7.5. Automotive
7.6. Other End Users

8. Global 3D Printing for Prototype Market Analysis, by Application
8.1. Introduction
8.2. Functional Prototyping
8.3. Concept Modeling

9. Global 3D Printing for Prototype Market Analysis, by Technology
9.1. Introduction
9.2. CJP
9.3. DMLS
9.4. SLS
9.5. MJ
9.6. Others

10. Global 3D Printing for Prototype Market Analysis, by Geography
10.1. Introduction
10.2. North America
10.2.1. USA
10.2.2. Canada
10.2.3. Mexico
10.3. South America
10.3.1. Brazil
10.3.2. Argentina
10.3.3. Others
10.4. Europe
10.4.1. Germany
10.4.2. France
10.4.3. UK
10.4.4. Others
10.5. Middle East and Africa
10.5.1. Saudi Arabia
10.5.2. UAE
10.5.3. Others
10.6. Asia Pacific
10.6.1. China
10.6.2. India
10.6.3. Japan
10.6.4. South Korea
10.6.5. Taiwan
10.6.6. Thailand
10.6.7. Indonesia
10.6.8. Others

11. Competitive Environment and Analysis
11.1. Major Players and Strategy Analysis
11.2. Emerging Players and Market Lucrativeness
11.3. Mergers, Acquisitions, Agreements, and Collaborations
11.4. Vendor Competitiveness Matrix

12. Company Profiles 
12.1. Stratasys Ltd
12.2. 3D Systems Corporation
12.3. Kokinkliijke Philips N.V
12.4. 3ERP
12.5. Protolabs
12.6. Renishaw PLC
12.7. Ultimaker B.V
12.8. EOS Group
12.9. Materialise
12.10. SLM Solutions Group

Stratasys Ltd

Kickr Design

Kokinkliijke Philips N.V



Renishaw PLC

Ultimaker B.V

EOS Group


SLM Solutions Group