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PWG announces updated IPP extensions

August 12, 2020

IEEE-ISTO Printer Working Group (PWG) announces updated Internet Printing Protocol (IPP) extensions to support additive manufacturing/3D printing and a specification for Safe G-Code that avoids 3D printing commands with safety or security concerns.

The IEEE-ISTO Printer Working Group (PWG) has released IPP 3D Printing Extensions v1.1 (PWG 5100.21-2019) and PWG Safe G-Code Subset for 3D Printing v1.0 Best Practices (PWG 5199.7-2019).

These documents build on previously defined extensions to the Internet Printing Protocol (IPP) Internet Standard (IETF STD92) that combine existing high-level 3D file formats with the IPP network printing protocol and Job Ticket formats to describe the printer’s capabilities, the objects to print, and the status of submitted jobs to better and more portably produce physical objects with additive manufacturing devices, also known as 3D printers.

The IPP 3D Printing Extensions specification v1.1 (PWG 5100.21-2019) extends IPP for 3D printing with a focus on popular Fused Deposition Modelling (FDM) devices that melt and extrude filaments of ABS, PLA, or other materials in layers to produce a physical 3D object. These IPP extensions can be used for other printing methods such as selective laser sintering (SLS) and stereolithography (SLA), as well as many other materials, such as concrete printing.

The v1.1 update clarifies that the requirements for implementing the 3MF file format are limited to those printers that do on-board slicing, adds attributes describing the build platform shape, nozzle and chamber environment, describes how to use the IPP Shared Infrastructure Extensions [PWG5100.18] with 3D printing, and defines a structured naming convention for the “material-type” attribute for values that aren’t registered with the PWG. This last addition is very important because it provides IPP with an extensible convention for specifying material identifiers from the wide variety of other standard and non-standard material identifiers.

The new PWG Safe G-Code Subset for 3D Printing v1.0 Best Practices document (PWG 5199.7-2019) defines a “safe” subset of G-code for use in 3D printing with IPP along with the capabilities and parameters needed to allow a client to generate G-code compatible with the printer. PWG Safe G-Code eliminates direct device control (e.g., “set extruder temperature”) and hardware access (e.g., “write file to SD card)” commands that pose serious safety and security concerns.

The PWG invites participation (open as always to members and non-members) from anyone in the 3D printing/additive manufacturing community. Non-members are always welcome to participate in PWG standardisation efforts. Sample code implementing the IPP 3D Printing Extensions specification v1.1 has been published in the PWG’s IPP Sample Code project on GitHub (https://github.com/istopwg/ippsample).

More info can be found on the PWG 3D Printing page: https://www.pwg.org/3d/.

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