One way to improve confidence and encourage proliferation of additive manufacturing (AM) technologies and parts is by generating more high-quality data describing the performance of AM processes and parts. Many in the AM community see round-robin studies as a way to generate large data sets while distributing the cost among the participants, thereby reducing the cost to individual users. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has conducted and participated in several of these AM round-robin studies. Whereas the results of these studies are interesting and informative, many of the lessons learned in conducting these studies concern the logistics and methods of the study and unique issues presented by AM. Existing standards for conducting interlaboratory studies of measurement methods, along with NIST's experience, form the basis for recommended protocols for conducting AM round-robin studies. The role of round-robin studies in AM qualification, some of the limitations of round-robin studies, and the potential benefit of less formal collaborative experiments where multiple factors, AM machine being only one, are varied simultaneously are also discussed.
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