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Will we need warehouses in the future?

Will we need warehouses in the future?
Can we, for example, make our own products in the comfort of our own homes?

Watch the following video and read the article ‘the ultimate supply chain postponement system’ (link to the downloadable PDF at the bottom of the page) to see how this could revolutionise warehouses.

3D printing

In this video we see how products are printed using what looks like a large photocopier – the difference being that the item is printed in 3D and can have moving parts.

Does this mean that rather than ordering items over the internet or buying in store we can just print it at home as and when we want it.

A number of companies including aircraft manufacturers are beginning to use this technology as the material used is much lighter.

YouTube: 3D Scanning and Printing at WMG YouTube: 3D Scanning and Printing at WMG

Talking point

  • Which items might not be conducive to additive manufacturing or 3D printing?
  • What are the potential drawbacks of such a system?

© University of Warwick
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Supply Chains in Practice: How Things Get to You

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