3D printing

variants: or less commonly 3-D printing

Definition of 3D printing

: the manufacturing of solid objects by the deposition of layers of material (such as plastic) in accordance with specifications that are stored and displayed in electronic form as a digital model Whereas traditional manufacturing techniques start with a solid block and cut unwanted material away from it, 3D printing … builds up material in layers, producing precisely the object desired with almost no waste.— Mark Betancourt Imagine dreaming up a toy for your kids, sketching it out on your computer, and minutes later—voilà!—you're holding the real thing in your hand. Such is the promise of 3-D printing, a niche but growing technology that Bre Pettis and his Brooklyn-based start-up, MakerBot, believe will become as common in homes as the printers that crank out our photos and household documents.— Andréa Ford et al.

called also additive manufacturing

First Known Use of 3D printing

1992, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler

The first known use of 3D printing was in 1992

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Last Updated

27 Jan 2020

Cite this Entry

“3D printing.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/3D%20printing. Accessed 22 Feb. 2020.

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