4D Printing Market - Growth, Trends, and Forecast (2019 - 2024)

The market is segmented by Type of Programmable Material (Programmable Textiles, Programmable Bio-material, Programmable Wood ), Industry ( Healthcare, Aerospace and Defence, Construction, Clothing ), and Geography.

Market Snapshot

Study Period:


Base Year:


Fastest Growing Market:

Asia Pacific

Largest Market:

North America



Key Players:

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Market Overview

The 4D printing market is expected to register a CAGR of 31% during the forecast period (2019 - 2024). The advancement in bio-fabrication technology will drive the 4D printing market in the forecast period.

  • When external energy sources, such as pressure, heat, energy, etc., are brought in contact with this 3D printed smart material, it alters based on the instructions in the previously given program. In this way, 4D printing technology enables the printed objects to self-transform over time.
  • The technological advancements in 4D printing are resulting in the development of technologies in the medical and defense sector. For instance, to minimize the procedures involved in carrying out the surgery, doctors use 4D printing to put self-transforming components into the patient’s body.
  • Furthermore, in military applications, 4D printing has more significance. Soldiers can have a camouflage that can adapt to different environments and metals. This is increasing the performance of tanks and trucks, according to the changes in the environment. Owing to their benefits in producing guns, machinery, and other defense technologies, 4D printing is being increasingly explored by the military.
  • In the United States, the USAF and the US military are investing in 4D printing to bolster infrastructure and posture American airpower for continued dominance into the future.
  • A major challenge for 4D printing technology is the structural design that includes both the hardware section and software section. To design the hardware part, special measures need to be addressed.

Scope of the Report

4D printing is an additive manufacturing technology that allows nanoscale manipulation and programming during the production process to ultimately create products designed to adapt to their environment.

By Type of Programmable Material
Programmable Carbon Fiber
Programmable Textiles
Programmable Bio material
Programmable Wood
By End User
Aerospace and Defense
Other End Users
North America
Rest of the World

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Key Market Trends

Applications in Automotive Sector to Drive the 4D Printing Market

  • With the increasing use of 3D printing in making prototypes, productions, making concepts and samples, in education, arts, and others, the use of 4D printing is also booming in various end users, such as medical, aerospace and defense, automotive, being the advanced extension of 3D printing.
  • Out of all, the automotive industry continually faces new challenges, as the demand for inexpensive and high-quality components increases. Extreme diligence must be maintained to ensure that such components are designed and manufactured with sufficient quality, in order to endure a variety of service environments.
  • 4D printed parts are prone to change their shape and size according to the environmental factors. They are widely used in cars, which in various conditions adjust to the required shape and size.
  • The usual automobile component may fail for different failure modes, causing severe accidents. Therefore it is important to identify the failure mode for which the automobile component fails more frequently and then use 4D printed parts instead of normal parts for better reliability and safety.
  • Recently, Asia-Pacific witnessed considerable growth in the automotive industry, owing to the increasing demand for passenger cars as well as advanced vehicles. The passenger vehicles, however, find increased usage due to the population density in the region. Therefore, the increasing production of passenger and luxury cars is driving the market growth in the region.

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North America to Account for Significant Market Share in 4D Printing Market

  • The North American region, particularly the United States, is among the lead innovators and pioneers, in terms of adoption, for additive manufacturing. It is expected to retain its position as the market leader, over the forecast period.
  • Moreover, it was reported that in the United States, one out of seven deaths are attributable to CAD (coronary artery disease), with the estimated incidence of myocardial infarction being 790,000 per year, according to the Hindawi Publishing Corporation.
  • Despite advances in medical therapy and the medical sector, fibrotic myocardial scar tissue formation, after ischemia leading to depressed heart function, is considered an irreversible process, short of a heart transplant. 
  • One of the new methods of cardiac tissue engineering is 4D bio-printing, which has shown varying degrees of success, where optimization of the tissue engineering process has led to important preclinical applications.

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Competitive Landscape

The key profiles of the leading suppliers of 4D printing technology are self-assembly lab: Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 3D Systems Corporation, Hewlett Packard Corporation, Autodesk Inc., Stratasys Ltd, ARC Centre of Excellence for Electromaterials Science (ACES), Materialise NV, Exone Corporation, Organovo Holdings Inc., and others. The market is highly competitive without any dominating players. Companies in additive manufacturing and 3D printing are expanding their capabilities by investing in R&D for 4D printing. Therefore, the market is fragmented.

  • January 2019 - Autodesk developed the new generative design software that works directly with HP Multi Jet Fusion 3D printers. The design-to-print workflow for additive manufacturing was designed specifically for HP’s 3D printers, with the goal of streamlining the conversion of digital design to the physical part. In addition to working with HP, the company is also working with GE Additive to create an integrated workflow for GE 3D printer, which will then lead to the advancement in 4D printing techniques.

Major Players

  1. Autodesk Inc.
  2. Stratasys Ltd
  3. 3D Systems Corporation
  4. Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company
  5. ExOne Co.

* Complete list of players covered available in the table of contents below


Table of Contents


    1. 1.1 Study Deliverables

    2. 1.2 Study Assumptions

    3. 1.3 Scope of the Study




    1. 4.1 Market Overview

    2. 4.2 Introduction to Market Drivers and Restraints

    3. 4.3 Market Drivers

      1. 4.3.1 Advances in Material Science & Demand for Multi-Material Printing

      2. 4.3.2 Technological Advancements Resulting in Development of Technologies Such as Shape Memory Alloys

    4. 4.4 Market Restraints

      1. 4.4.1 Higher Investment and Development Costs

    5. 4.5 Value Chain / Supply Chain Analysis

    6. 4.6 Industry Attractiveness - Porter's Five Forces Analysis

      1. 4.6.1 Threat of New Entrants

      2. 4.6.2 Bargaining Power of Buyers/Consumers

      3. 4.6.3 Bargaining Power of Suppliers

      4. 4.6.4 Threat of Substitute Products

      5. 4.6.5 Intensity of Competitive Rivalry


    1. 5.1 By Type of Programmable Material

      1. 5.1.1 Programmable Carbon Fiber

      2. 5.1.2 Programmable Textiles

      3. 5.1.3 Programmable Bio material

      4. 5.1.4 Programmable Wood

    2. 5.2 By End User

      1. 5.2.1 Medical

      2. 5.2.2 Aerospace and Defense

      3. 5.2.3 Automotive

      4. 5.2.4 Other End Users

    3. 5.3 Geography

      1. 5.3.1 North America

      2. 5.3.2 Europe

      3. 5.3.3 Asia-Pacific

      4. 5.3.4 Rest of the World


    1. 6.1 Company Profiles

      1. 6.1.1 Autodesk Inc.

      2. 6.1.2 Stratasys Ltd

      3. 6.1.3 3D Systems Corporation

      4. 6.1.4 Hewlett Packard Enterprise Company

      5. 6.1.5 ExOne Co.

      6. 6.1.6 Materialise NV

      7. 6.1.7 Organovo Holdings Inc.

    2. *List Not Exhaustive


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