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January 2015 • The PCB Magazine 39 simon Fried is VP, director & co-founder of nanoDimension ltd. 3D PRINTING PCBS continues It is early days for the 3D electronics revo- lution, but it's clearly coming. If all of these elements, printer, inks, and software come to- gether there is no reason that PCBs shouldn't be 3D printed. 3D printing can lead to dramati- cally faster in-house development, protect IP in development and maybe even inject a little more design innovation and creativity. As is the case in other industries, it is unlikely that 3D printers will replace efficient mass-production processes anytime soon. For prototypes and very small-batches, however, 3D printing may be just around the corner. Being able to print a prototype HD multilayer board in-house would certainly be a welcome development for many companies, both big and small. Industrial scale 3D printing of a multi- layer PCB is another matter. Mass production of PCBs by additive manufacturing won't be a reality for quite some time. It's probably as much as a decade away at least, if at all. Dis- crete stages of the PCB manufacturing process can be 3D printed however. Industrial digital printing of photoresist (Mutracx) is here to- day, as is 3D printing of solder mask (Camtek's Gryphon). 3D printing will likely affect the world of PCBs as it has other areas. First printers will deliver in-house prototyping solutions that change the way products are developed and, in the mid-term, 3D printing will begin to replace discreet stages of mass production. Whether 3D printing will completely replace traditional manufacturing processes remains to be seen. There are those that dream of a 3D printer that can print multi-material objects with complete- ly embedded HD circuits and no traditional PCB at all. PCB realtimewith.com CliCk To View ViDEo intErViEw i-Connect007 guest editor Bob neves interviews rex rozario and giovanni Tridenti about their collabo- ration in China with the formation of Dsg in 2007. Two European Industry Giants Discuss Cooperation in China by Real Time with... HKPCA 2014 FEaturE

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