As the physical actualization of an engineer’s idea to solve a problem, a prototype serves a critical product development purpose in helping engineers learn how a product will function in actual use before creating and investing in production-ready manufacturing processes. It’s important to learn as much as possible about the product through prototyping phases, so design, performance, functionality and materials used for the final product meet desired outcomes. When done well, going through the prototyping process can save manufacturers significant time and resources, and keep products on track for market.