With 3D printing, it is possible to transfer a virtual design to reality practically at once. The usually long, time-consuming and very expensive process of prototyping and model making can be replaced, depending on the needs, by the additive technique of choice. The use of 3D printing in design and research brings a number of benefits: a dramatic reduction in prototyping time: a significant increase in the speed of design error detection, the possibility of repeated testing, very rapid improvement, refinement and optimisation of prototypes. Due to the very wide range of materials available in additive techniques, R&D departments have a very wide field of action in working on their designs and product development.