Additive Manufacturing refers to a process by which digital 3D design data is used to build up a component in layers by depositing material. Metal, polymer, and ceramic materials can be used to manufacture parts of a geometry that often cannot be produced by any other manufacturing technology.
The names of specific additive manufacturing technologies include: 3D printing, layered object manufacturing, selective laser sintering, selective laser melting, LENS, stereolithography, and fused deposition modeling. Synonyms include layered manufacturing, solid freeform manufacturing, direct digital manufacturing, rapid prototyping.
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