European aviation giant Airbus recently unveiled world’s first 3D printed aircraft ‘Thor’ at the Berlin Air Show.
The windowless mini-plane weighs just 21 Kilos and is 13 feet long. The entire plane is made from a substance called polyamide except for the plane’s electrical systems.
“This is a test of what’s possible with 3D printing technology,” Detlev Konigorski, the man who was in charge of developing Thor for Airbus, said while speaking at the International Aerospace Exhibition and Air Show in Berlin.
The printed pieces have many advantages over the conventional parts. Not only are they 30-50 percent lighter but they also reduce the manufacturing waste while reducing the carbon emissions in aviation.
Though Thor is still far from being a practical product, it demonstrates the possibilities that 3D printing technology holds in future.
Ariane 6 rocket of the European Space Agency (ESA), that will bast off in 2020, will feature many parts printed using 3D printing technology.