Definition of 3D Printing

Additive manufacturing, 3D printing & rapid prototyping are all terms for the same process of building a three-dimensional object from a digital (CAD) model. However there is a difference – in 2010 the ASTM International (F42) committee defined additive manufacturing as:

…making objects from 3D data, usually layer upon layer…” and 3D Printing as “…fabrication of objects through the deposition of a material using a print head, nozzle or other printer technology.” These terms are published in ASTM F2972 and are now accepted internationally by ISO, clearly positioning 3D Printing as a process within the Additive Manufacturing industry.

3D Printing does appear to be the term which has achieved wider public recognition as the range of Additive Manufacturing technologies have become more visible in the general marketplace. Most recently ‘Rapid Prototyping’ as a term, has been dropped by many companies that can produce end-use parts. More questions? Visit our FAQs page.

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We pride ourselves on the quality of our carefully selected materials and beautifully engineered parts. We have worked hard to select the finest materials and employ the best industry practises. Sit back upload your files and let us bring your ideas and creations to life. Where to 3D Print is a question many clients ask themselves, with our market leading technology, our know how and our can do spirit look no further than 3D Print Direct.


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