Following a $2.33 million grant from the Australian Government, to understand the development of space-based infrastructure and equipment with the locally made sustainable and “green” resource, machine manufacturer Titomic and Aerospace manufacturer Boeing announce a collaboration to advance AM in the space sector.
Both parties will explore the use of sustainable titanium powders for 3D printed parts designed for space systems.
“Under the agreement, Boeing will provide the designs and engineering expertise to enable Titomic to demonstrate its cutting-edge kinetic fusion additive manufacturing technology on the production of space parts, initially for JP 9102,” Paul Watson, Boeing Defence Australia director of aerospace engineering and production, said.
“Demonstrating that additive manufacturing technology, or large-scale 3D printing, using green titanium produces highly resilient, lightweight components will have broad-ranging application across the space sector.”
Boeing describes Titomic Kinetic Infusion as “the world’s biggest and fastest 3D metal additive manufacturing capability.” For those who do not know, this process is a type of cold spray additive manufacturing which involves spraying a fine metal powder onto a solid substrate below. (It’s like you’d spray paint onto a graffiti wall.) The substrate can either be a build platform or an existing metal part.
An exclusive feature has been dedicated to Cold Spray Additive Manufacturing.
Recently, at the end of the year, Titomic enhances its portfolio with European cold spray technology company, Dycomet Europe B.V., a Netherlands-based company offering low and medium pressure cold spray technology solutions to various industries since 2006.
The collaboration between Boeing and Titomic will further increase Titomic’s position within the space arena. “Together we can redefine the production process for space vehicles and parts to accelerate Australia’s standing in the global space domain”, Herbert Koeck, chief executive of Titomic, said.
Sustainable titanium 3D printing for space
As you may know, Titanium is one of the most widely used materials in the space industry. This is mainly due to its high strength-to-weight ratio and excellent corrosion resistance.
Boeing and Titomic explain that the material is readily available in Australia. One of the acknowledged advantages of this material is that it is more environmentally sustainable when compared to other similar alternatives. Not to mention that, when AM processes metallic materials, it leads to significant time and cost savings by eliminating the need for vast amounts of raw mineral processing.
Watson adds, “The partnership will demonstrate that additive manufacturing technology, or large-scale 3D printing, using green titanium produces highly resilient, lightweight components that have broad-ranging application across the space sector.”
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