As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, airlines have decided to hasten the retirement of older aircraft as a cost-cutting strategy, and are currently aiming to replace them with newer generation aircraft that are comparatively lighter and more fuel-efficient.
Several Aerospace manufacturers are funding large-scale research initiatives targeted at improving the utilisation of 3D-printed parts and components in next-generation aircraft. In addition, the use of 3D-printed parts is growing in the aftermarket sector, as such parts may relieve pressure on traditional supply chains.
Nonetheless, advances in 3D printing technology and material sciences are expected to solve most of these restrictions in the coming years, accelerating the use of 3D printing in the aviation industry. Due to the rapid pandemic breakout, the aviation industry, as well as manufacturing and logistics hubs, sustained major losses in 2019-2020. Nonetheless, during the projection period, the industry is expected to recover. Passenger travel will recover to pre-covid levels by 2023, according to the International Air Transport Association (IATA). This is predicted to increase demand for new aircraft as well as aftermarket parts for existing aircraft.