Ryan McCarthy, secretary of the U.S. Army, said the service branch needs to implement 3D printing or additive manufacturing for cost reduction and capability boost purposes, Defense News reported Sunday.
He said at the Reagan National Defense Forum that the Army must adopt 3D printing for the production of spare parts for weapon systems.
"Parts, it’s why weapon systems have challenging operational readiness rates, its why weapon systems continue to get heavier over time as you incrementally upgrade the system,” he told reporters.
The defense industry, however, urges against the use of 3D printing due to the resulting reduction of parts orders. The military would face challenges regarding intellectual property and is trying to win the industry's assistance on the matter, McCarthy noted.