Printing Technologies

So there are currently ten posts covering eleven different printing processes. In order to learn them better I decided to summarize them all in my own words, which I hope are easy enough to understand (feedback is greatly appreciated, both conceptually and grammatically). Here is a list of all of the types I have covered and their appropriate links. I have also categorized them so that you can see some of the underlying technologies/similarities/differences.

SLA – Stereolithography
SLS – Selective Laser Sintering
FDM – Fused Deposition Modeling
LOM – Laminated Object Manufacturing
3DP – 3-Dimensional Printing
Inkjet and MultiJet Printing
SGC – Solid Ground Curing
JP – Jetted Photopolymer
DMLS – Direct Metal Laser Sintering
LENS – Laser Engineered Net Shaping & DMD – Direct Metal Deposition

The following websites were extremely helpful in researching:

http://www.custompartnet.com/wu/additive-fabrication
http://www.efunda.com/processes/rapid_prototyping/intro.cfm
http://home.att.net/~castleisland/home.htm
http://home.utah.edu/~asn8200/rapid.html

…as well as manufacturers of these technologies, whose pages are linked within individual posts.

What I have found in doing this research is that many of the processes are very similar, but deal with slightly different materials. They vary in speed and quality, and it seems that if you are familiar with all of these technologies, there will always be one that stands out for a specific application. I will be constructing a map soon that I hope will shed light on these subtle differences and help to analyze cost and speed in addition to accuracy, tolerance, etc.

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