A waterjet is an industrial tool capable of cutting a wide variety of materials using a very high-pressure jet of water mixed with an abrasive substance. It is a CNC machine (computer numeric control) that requires G-code to control its movements. G-code is a series of instructions that tell the machine to move to various points at a specified pace, based on a vector drawing in a CAD file.
Materials commonly cut with a waterjet include metals, stone, tile, ceramics, glass, foam, rubber, plastics, composites, and even textiles, leather, paper, and food. Though there are other ways to cut many of these materials, the waterjet has several advantages, including speed, precision, small kerf (width of cut line), and the fact that the cut generates no high temperature changes that can lead to warping or inaccuracy. Its accuracy/repeatability is within 0.004 inches, or about the thickness of a sheet of paper. Sharp corners, bevels, pierce holes, and shapes with minimal inner radii are all possible. Waterjets are capable of cutting through thicknesses of up to 6 inches in metals and 18 inches of most other materials.