Advanced Manufacturing

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Additive Manufacturing in Space:

Did you know that NASA sends up to 7,000 pounds of spare parts to the International Space Station every year? To reduce the clutter, the agency is turning to additive manufacturing – 3D-printing required parts.

How Nanocomposites Support ‘Lightweighting’

Employed in many of today’s automotive fuel tanks and engine parts, the nanoparticles present in nanocomposites have an extremely high surface-to-volume ratio, which improves structural traits like flexibility, strength, flame retardancy, surface appearance, thermal stability, and electrical conductivity.

When Powder Metallurgy Builds a ‘Spaceship’

Powder metallurgy uses tiny particles of metal to build unique parts. See how the 3D-printing company Velo3D used the powder metallurgy process of additive manufacturing to create a microturbine generator roughly the size of a microwave oven.

Rapid Prototyping:

As rapid prototyping and metal 3D printing support the creation of new kinds of automotive components like hubcaps and side air vents, designers need to know that their fabricated parts have been made properly and according to design specifications. The beauty of 3D printing and rapid prototyping? When you’re printing on a layer-by-layer basis, 100 microns at a time, you’re able to see exactly what’s inside the part.

Smart Materials:

When it comes to smart materials, Keith Goossen at the University of Delaware has a newer, cheaper idea for eco-friendly windows and windshields: Liquid. Goossen’s glass contains fluid-activated panels that change from transparent to opaque states – an achievement that he hopes will provide a more affordable, commercial appeal to consumers. The 3D-printed smart materials switch from transparent to reflective a thousand times without degrading.

Manufacturing Methods for a Better Engine:

Before you can begin to talk about the manufacturing methods for better engines, you need to learn what’s going on inside the machinery and investigate the physics. By building a series of experimental rotating detonation engines, University of Washington researcher James Koch and his team found promising patterns in an advanced technology known as the rotating detonation engine, or RDE.

Additive Manufacturing and Methods of Inspection:

There are many methods of manufacturing, and many methods of inspection. Do the same inspection methods used in casting apply to products built by additive manufacturing with powdered metal? A Tech Briefs reader asks our industry expert Kevin Brigden, an Applications Engineer at the U.K.-based engineering company Renishaw.

Siemens Digital Industries Software merges virtual and real worlds in software, hardware, design, and manufacturing

“Every industry we serve – from aerospace and automotive to electronic design – is transforming,” Siemens PLM Software officials in Plano, Texas, acknowledge. Siemens PLM Software, too, is undergoing a transformation, having just changed its name to Siemens Digital Industries Software. The new name reflects the division’s position inside the core operating company, Siemens Digital Industries, as well as its evolution from a product lifecycle management (PLM) company to one delivering a broad portfolio of industrial software and services in support of digitalization strategies at companies around the world

Air Force maintainers now use 3D-pritning to create nonstructural aircraft parts

Three maintainers of the 60th Maintenance Squadron at Travis Air Force Base in Fairfield, California were trained and certified with Stratasys F900 industrial-sized 3D printer which prints parts up to 36-by-24-by-36 inches in Ultem 9085 thermoplastic – a material ideal for aerospace applications based on its flexibility, density, strength, weight, and flame retardant properties.
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