New Census of Rapid Prototyping Service Bureaus Taken

New Census of Rapid Prototyping Service Bureaus Taken
We've just completed a major update of the Worldwide Guide to Rapid
Prototyping's Service bureau Directory and Database. There were
thousands of changes, and here are a few industry highlights:
-- There are now more than 640 locations worldwide where RP services can
be obtained, including commercial businesses, academic institutions and
government agencies. There were 587 about a year ago. Some of that
increase is due to better research, but most of it is due to companies
that have opened additional sales offices, or which have been
established in the last year.
-- There are slightly more than 470 independent commercial entities in
the 2003 total. The number of organizations in the US has remained
virtually constant over the last two years. Many organizations have
left the US market only to be replaced by an equal number of new
entrants. All of the numerical growth has been outside the US, and
commercial service bureaus outside the US now outnumber US companies by
a substantial margin.
-- The dominant technology provided by service bureaus is
stereolithography. Nearly 63% of the organizations provide that
technology, but the largest change was noted for selective laser
sintering. SLS increased its penetration by nearly 7% so that now more
than 53% of all organizations are capable of providing that technology.
The penetrations of other technologies remained essentially unchanged,
and very low compared to the two dominant technologies mentioned.
-- About 46% of SB's provide only a single technology, but more than 50%
can provide 2 or more, and more than 20% provide 3 or more.
-- For the first time we noted reverse engineering services provided by
RP service bureaus, and now indicate them with a special icon in the
directory and in the database. Approximately 13% of service providers
indicate they also provide RE or scanning services.
Our web directory of RP Service Providers is available free to all. The
Database itself is a timesaving tool for companies selling such
products as RP systems and software, materials, CNC equipment, molding
materials, part finishing services, vacuum and investment casting
equipment, CAD stations, and scanners. Registered users can receive this
update for just $99.
For more information and pricing, please see:
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Additive fabrication processes typically known as Rapid Prototyping
(RP), Solid Freeform Fabrication (SFF), or by the names of the
technologies themselves such as stereolithography, have become important
tools for mechanical design, manufacturing, surgery, art and
architecture and many other fields.
The Worldwide Guide to Rapid Prototyping web-site is by far the world's
largest web-site dedicated to the field. It's a definitive source for
complete, up to date information on every facet of rapid prototyping,
rapid manufacturing and rapid tooling. The site also has extensive
tutorials, news links, in-depth coverage of technology and products, as
well as the most complete listings available anywhere for rapid
prototyping service bureaus.
For further information, please contact:
Ed Grenda
Castle Island Co. (email)
The Worldwide Guide to Rapid Prototyping
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