Amazon might be on to something! Keep reading to find out what they are planning!
First, Amazon announced their idea for Amazon Prime Air, a delivery system of the future that Amazon created to safely get packages to customers in 30 minutes or less using small, unmanned aerial vehicles.
Now, the company has shifted gears to another project. As we all know, 3D printing continues to be a hot topic and Amazon continues to come out with bigger and better ideas.
Amazon continues to build on ideas for faster delivery. That’s why the company is working on an invention that would 3D-print items on the curbs outside of customers’ homes.
As of late, Amazon has filed multiple patent applications for a system that would enable the company to print goods on-demand in “mobile manufacturing hubs.”
These mobile hubs would be outfitted with 3D printers to rapidly produce and deliver items on-the-go.
Most, if not all, inventions are created in order to solve a problem. So, albeit very interesting, what problem is this Amazon invention looking to solve? Amazon is looking to actually speed up the delivery process and reduce the warehouse space that the company needs to hold.
Now that we have the problem/solution of this invention figured out, let’s figure out how this 3D printing truck would actually work.
First, Amazon would utilize a mobile manufacturing apparatus that would be able to send a (StereoLithography) STL file to a mobile unit that’s closest to a customer. The STL file would provide the apparatus with instructions on how to print the item that was ordered.
Once the order is printed, it could be within miles of the customer who ordered the item and it would be either delivered or picked up.
As we mentioned before, Amazon is trying to make the mobile hubs come to fruition to reduce their reliance on warehouse space, as well as the number of employees and robots it takes to sort through stored items.
Here’s an infographic from 3Dprint.com to get a better understanding of Amazon’s mobile manufacturing hubs.
As we all know, not every single patent that’s filed materializes into an actual product or service. However, due to the fact that 3D printing continues to be on the rise and people want their orders delivered in a small time frame, this invention from Amazon could be more realistic than we think.
As of right now, Amazon hasn’t been awarded the patents for these mobile 3D printing hubs, so only time will tell if they will make manufacturing on-the-go a reality!
Copyright Inventionland, 2015