(Ultimate List of Acronyms)
3D MANUFACTURING - METHODS & MATERIALS
Where would Additive be without the contrast of Subtractive Manufacturing and other, more traditional production methods?
What is the difference between PEEK, PAEK, PEKK?
What is MIM and PM, and why is it mentioned in the context of Metal Additive?
What is PDMS?
Find some additional processes / materials explained below
If you’re looking for a specific AM process, check 3D PULA.
For any file format/software related queries, go to 3D FULA.
ABS = Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene
ABS/PC = ABS and PolyCarbonate Blend
ASA = Acrylonitrile Styrene Acrylate
BMI = Building Information Modeling
BPA = Bisphenol-A (PSF)
monomer used in production of some PolyCarbonates
CF = CARBON FIBRE
CNC = Computer Numerical Control
machining process using computer-controlled tools to machine tool the parts.
DDM = Direct Digital Manufacturing
the additive fabrication directly from a CAD file, without tooling, moulding and machining; 3D printing.
DI = De-Ionised (Water)
DPM = Dipropylene Glycol Methyl Ether
EPDM = rubber
EPX = EPOXY
in the context of additive, this could refer to two-part EPX81 by Carbon 3D.
FPU = Flexible Poly Urethane
HCR = High Consistency Rubber
one of the oldest materials producing silicone rubber parts via Injection Moulding
HDPE = High Density Poly Ethylene, RIC level 2
called alkathene or polythene when used for pipes
HIPS = High Impact PolyStyrene
HSE = Health and Safety Executive
HTV = High Temperature Vulcanisation
high temperature curing rubbers for Injection Moulding
IM = Injection Moulding
IPA = Isopropyl Alcohol, Isopropanol; ALCOHOL C₃H₈O
colourless, and flammable liquid with strong odour, often used in washing systems; unlike stronger solvents like acetone (CH₃)₂CO, IPA is more practical solution for removing the uncured resin residue from SLA/DLP parts as it doesn't penetrate parts as aggressively.
LDPE = Low density Poly Ethylene, RIC level 4
LIM = Liquid Injection Moulding
LSR = Liquid Silicone Rubber
liquid form of HTV; used in Injection Moulding
MIM = Metal Injection Moulding
can also refer to: Micro Injection Moulding
MSDS = Material Safety Data Sheet
NBR = Nitrile Butadiene Rubber
PA = PolyAmideS
commonly known as Nylons, semicrystalline plastic. Most common variants used in Additive Manufacturing are PA12 (example: EOS PA2200) biodegradable PA11 (example: EOS PA1102), PA6.
PBT = PolyButylene Terephtalate
PC = Poly Carbonate(s), RIC level 7 ♹
clear thermoplastics that can be easily machine worked, thermoformed and injection moulded.
PCL = Poly Capro Lactone
PDMS =Polydimethylsiloxane [(CH3)2SiO]n
also known as silicon oil or dimethicone, it is most widely used mineral organic polymer in siloxane (“silicone”) elastomers. Optically clear, inert, non-toxic and non-flammable, FDA-approved for cosmetic and even medical use.
In context of 3D Printers, often used as a non-stick coating of resin vats and build trays (example: Formlabs' Form2 SLA printer)
PDVF = Polyvinylidene fluoride
semi-crystalline, self-extinguishing thermoplastic resistant to many harsh chemicals. Discovered in Japan in 1969 by Dr Heijji Kawai. Suitable for injection moulding, compression moulding and hot moulding, recently it started to appear as specialised filament for industrial applications for FDM/FFF systems.
PEI = Poly Ether Imide
stong heat and impact resistant plastic, cheaper alternative to PEEK with slightly decreased properties; suitable for CNC and injection moulding
PEEK = PolyEther Ether Ketone
semicrystalline high-temperature resistant thermoplastic with excellent mechanical and chemical resistance properties.
PEKK = Polyether ketone ketone
PET = Poly ethylene terephthalate, RIC level 1 ♳
PETG = Polyethylene Terephthalate Glycol
PF = Phenol Formaldehyde
PHA = poly hydroxy alkanoate
PLA = PolyLACTIDE; Poly lactic Acid ♹
starch-derived polyester (NOT acid)
PLA/PHA = Polylactide and polyhydroxyalkanoate blend
blend of bio-polyesters suitable for desktop 3D printing. PHA additive counteracts brittleness of PLA, resulting in slightly stronger parts. First developed by Dutch company ColorFabb, sister company of Helian Polymers.
PM = Powder Metallurgy
PMMA = Poly Methyl Meth Acrylate
also known as 'Acrylic Glass', 'Perspex', 'Plexiglass', 'Acrylite', 'Lucite'; suitable for CNC machining and Laser Cutting. Sporadically available as a AM material.
POM = PolyOxyMethylene
engineering thermoplastic, also known as acetal, polyacetal, and polyformaldehyde, characterised by high stiffness, low friction, and excellent dimensional stability.
PP = Poly Propylene, RIC level 5 ♷
PPE = Personal Protection Equipment
gloves, masks, ear protection, aprons, etc.
PPU = Post Processing Unit
PPSF/PPSU = Poly Phenyl Sulphone
high performance polymer characterised by excellent thermal stability. CNC machinable.
PS = Poly Styrene, RIC level 6 ♸
PSU = PolySulphone
corrosion resistant and sterilizable in autoclaves, suitable for CNC machining; more information.
PTFE = Poly tetra fluoro ethylene
also known under the brand name Teflon; chemical, temperature and flame resistant synthetic fluoropolymer. CNC machinable.
PU = Poly Urethane
PVA = Poly Vinyl Alcohol
water-soluble compound commonly used as support material for dual extrusion 3D printing systems, with relatively low print temperature (180-200°C) ; easily dissolved in cold water.
PVC = Poly Vinyl Chloride, RIC level 3 ♵
chemical, corrosion and flame resistant, suitable for CNC and Laser Cutting.
PXFL = Portable X-ray Fluorescence
useful in surface sampling and identifying metal powder residue / contamination in Metal Additive Manufacturing plants.
RIC = Resin Identification Code ♺
RP = Rapid Prototyping
RPU = RIGID POLY URETHANE
SC = Sand Casting
SMC = Sand Moulded Casting
SBR = Styrene Butadiene Rubber
synthetic rubber of good resilience & tensile strength but poor oil and ozone resistance;
SR = Silicone Rubber
an elastomer retaining properties through wide temperature range
TDS = Technical Data Sheet
TPE = Thermoplastic Elastomer
TPO = ThermoPlastic (Poly)Olefin
TPR = ThermoPlastic rubber
another name for ↑TPE; considered premium material
TPU = THERMOPLASTIC POLYURETHANE
Ultem = type of PEI