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CAD industry trends 2023

CAD Trends after 2023 • What’s next in CAD?

What is expected in the CAD industry?

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Let’s see the upcoming trends and innovations in the CAD industry and make our forecast.

Computer-Aided Design (CAD) with new generations of software, and hardware, plays a central role in product creation. First originated in the early 1960s, CAD is now available for the masses. It provides automated workflows based on optimization algorithms and parametrization methods, which makes the design process easier.

CAD industry growth

The most demanded CAD solution in industrial manufacturing currently is cloud-based computing

✅ CAD allows creating complicated shapes, without the need to draw by hand. The designs are used for 3D printing, industrial design, extended reality, and various other purposes. CAD enables the creation of 3D models that can be seen from different angles, also offering shared workflow.

➡ Now, when technology is evolving at an incredible speed, CAD solutions are becoming more powerful and intuitive.

Due to its wide range of possibilities, computer-aided design is used almost in every industry.

How Have CAD and Industrial Design Grown in Recent Years?

CAD creators at the office

Together with other technologies, CAD software now allows not only to create digital visuals, but also to communicate, analyze, and boost the efficiency of working processes

Technological advancement has reached a level when digitalization offers smart production processes, and transforms the industry and business models. Due to additive manufacturing, advanced materials, the internet of things (IoT), and automatization, the world has entered a new age of physical production. This stage is known as the 4th industrial revolution.

➡ In the report “Industry 4.0 and manufacturing ecosystems“, leading professional services network Deloitte mentions stages and development of 4 industrial revolutions: power generation (late 18th century), industrialization (early 20th), electronic automation (1970-2000), and smart manufacturing (from 2010 to date).

Industry 4 combines additive manufacturing (3D printing), IoT, artificial intelligence, and other cutting-edge technologies.

CAD is one of the key drivers of industrial growth as the technology is what makes it possible to create 2D and 3D objects from various materials. Together with other technologies, CAD software now allows not only to create digital visuals, but also to communicate, analyze, and boost the efficiency of working processes. It’s the first part of product development management (PLM).

➡ Here are important CAD, smart manufacturing, and industrial design stats:

According to Market Research Future, the most demanded CAD solution in industrial manufacturing currently is cloud-based computing

CAD industry & smart manufacturing markets growth

CAD industry & smart manufacturing markets growth

  • The global CAD market size in 2018 was around 7.47 billion. (Market Research Future)
  • In 2020, the CAD/CAM software market reached $9.06 billion (Statista)
  • Dominating technology segment in CAD is 3D (Market Research Future)
  • The estimated Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of the 3D CAD software market is 6.4%. In 2028, the market is supposed to reach $15.41 bln (Research and Markets)
  • The worldwide industrial design market size is expected to grow at a CAGR of 5.85% and surpass $61 million by 2025 (Report Ocean)
  • The most demanded CAD solution in industrial manufacturing currently is cloud-based computing. (Market Research Future)
  • According to Grand View Research, in 2020, the global smart manufacturing market size was estimated at around $236 billion
  • In 2020, the number of industrial design applications worldwide stood at about 1.1 million.
  • Germany and the USA led the rankings (Statista)
  • Statistics for CAD designers in the US show that there are over 59.773 specialists employed (Zippia)
  • 3D modeling (69%) and 2D drafting (67%) are the most popular design processes. Next, come rendering (39%) and building information modeling (BIM, 36%) (cadalist)
  • North America leads the CAD software market geographically. The Asia Pacific region is growing the fastest. (Associated Press)
  • The mobile 3D market is projected to increase at a CAGR of 7.5% from 2021 to 2027. (Research and Markets)

As CAD stats show, digital manufacturing is growing along with the rise of new solutions and improvements.

What Are the Latest Industrial Design Trends and Innovations?

CAD and other Industry 4 technologies continue to revolutionize the design creation process and manufacturing. Currently, technology allows opportunities previously unthinkable.

Leading ultimate trends in the CAD industry are:

  • Artificial Intelligence
  • CAD with Cloud Computing
  • Robotics
  • Internet of Everything
  • Extended Reality
  • Big Data
  • Improved connectivity
  • 3D printing
  • Blockchain technology

These innovations take business models to another level and allow them to deliver more value. Among the benefits of Industry 4 are data ownership and control, enhanced productivity, shared workflows, flexibility, reduced costs, higher revenues, personalized products, and of course, better user experience.

Digital Twins, 3D+ Printing, Smart Materials: How Will Industrial Design Grow?

CAD trends and Industry 4.0 have yet much more to offer. Technologies of digital twins, 3D+ printing, and smart materials are among the most promising innovations.

A digital twin is the virtual copy of a physical product or an environment in the form of a CAD model.

A huge trend in digital manufacturing that is seeing fast development is digital twins. A digital twin is the virtual copy of a physical product or an environment in the form of a CAD model.

Digital tweens in the nature

Digital twins play a huge role in product design, serving as virtual prototypes. Their other benefits include process optimization, cooperation possibility, customer experience analysis, and more

These virtual copies are created using the Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) technologies to get data.
Digital twins play a huge role in product design, serving as virtual prototypes. Their other benefits include process optimization, cooperation possibility, customer experience analysis, and more.
A report by Research and Markets predicts that digital twinning will become a standard feature for IoT apps by 2027.

One of the companies using digital twins is Amazon. On November 30, 2021, the tech giant announced its new service AWS IoT TwinMaker.

3D+ printing, particularly 4D and smart materials, is being widely experimented with. It seems that soon the world will see programmable products that don’t exist now.

4-dimensional printing is essentially 3D printing with an additional feature of adaptability. Like 3D, 4D uses computer-aided solutions. The difference is that 4D uses smart polymers, and as a result, objects respond to temperature, humidity, and other factors and change accordingly.

Programmable wood animation

Source: Bright Side, Research by Massachusetts Institute of Technology https://brightside.me/wonder-curiosities/10-amazing-substances-that-defy-the-laws-of-physics-249760/

4D opens up opportunities for every field; healthcare and bioprinting, fashion, furniture making, automotive, aerospace, and others.

Due to smart materials and computational folding, it becomes possible to print objects that are larger than printers.

Another advantage is the new properties of the objects.
For instance, there can be 3D printed clothes that change depending on the weather or other conditions.

➡ Industrial designer Christophe Guberan and MIT demonstrated a new production method to create active shoes that self-transform after being released from the machine.
They used stretched textiles that would allow the shoe to take the pre-programmed forms.

➡ In another experiment, MIT together with 3D printers and production company Stratasys and software corporation Autodesk explored the robotics-like performance of materials that transform responding changes of water, heat, light, or other energy input. The experiment showed that products can change without robotics, automation, or electronics.

The rapid development of technology has made it harder to keep up with the latest innovations. While digital manufacturing is seeing exciting news and products every day. It all starts with the idea and its realization through Computer-Aided Design software.

Anahit Avetisyan

Anahit Avetisyan is a content writer covering technology and design trends, affiliated with various tech magazines and corporate blogs.