A long-standing need to standardize terminology within the additive manufacturing industry has now been met with a new ASTM International standard, ASTM F2792, Terminology for Additive Manufacturing Technologies. The new document is the first approved standard under the jurisdiction of ASTM Committee F42 on Additive Manufacturing Technologies, which was formed in 2009.
Terry Wohlers, principal consultant and president, Wohlers Associates Inc., and chairman of Subcommittee F42.91 on Terminology, says that individuals and organizations have often used a wide mix of non-standard and poorly understood terms, which has led to confusing communication within the industry.
“Terminology is used in everyday communication among individuals, in presentations, at industry events, in press releases and in magazine and journal articles,” says Wohlers. “It is important that this communication is consistent and accurate, and it is our hope that ASTM terms are used rather than the haphazard approach of the past.”
Primary users of the standard, according to Wohlers, will include additive manufacturing users and producers, educational and research organizations, government agencies, investors, consultants, analysts and journalists.
Wohlers says that the recently published standard represents the first of at least two or three phases of work. “We chose some of the most important terms for the first group but have many more to identify and define,” says Wohlers. All participation in future revisions to ASTM F2792 is welcome, particularly from current and potential users of additive manufacturing systems.
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