Thursday, March 09, 2017

Metal 3D Printing to Shape the Aerospace Industry

Machine Design: Billions of dollars in investments along with years of R&D in metal and composite 3D printing are beginning to pay off for the aerospace industry as 3D-printed engine parts pass their testing phase and become integrated into final designs. Collaboration between startups, larger companies, and 3D printing services has led to engines with fewer assembly parts, better fuel economies, and a shorter time to market.

2 comments:

Rebecca Meckler said...

This goes to show that you can 3D print anything now. I thought reading about the benefits of the 3D printed parts over the traditional versions was really interesting. I thought the part where they mentioned that the cooling process in the 3D printed version actually gave the rotor peice more strength then forged versions was really cool. I never would have thought that the cooling factor would have changed anything. Millions of dollars has been invested into the technology to print these pieces though, so someone must have figured out that 3D printed pieces would have been beneficial. Also, 3D printed pieces have a better strength to weight ratio, produces less scrap, and is cheaper. This seems like a huge benefit to the Aerospace industry. I wonder what industries specifically the CEO Cullen Hilkene will mention in his speech. 3D printing obviously has applications in many fields so it will be interesting to see which ones he highlights.

Chris Calder said...

There is no doubt that 3D printing is the way of the future. Although the process is still pretty young and many complex applications are either too expensive or are just not possible. With companies like GE pouring money into this industry Developments and discovers are coming a lot faster allowing us to learn more about the process. I just finished watching a presentation on 3D printers in a fabrication class and it was really eye-opening the things that can be achieved. Price is probably the biggest deterrent for the theater industry and next would probably be finding a good material. The reason GE is using 3D printing is far different from a theatrical application but I can still see parallels that would help with the development of the technology. I look forward to reading more about what GE does with 3D technology and the future possibilities of the technology.

CMU School of Drama