Fortius Metals, a large format additive manufacturing company specializing in new materials, has received the amount of $1.25M as part of an AFWERX Direct-to-Phase II SBIR contract, to qualify its IN625-RAM2 wire alloy.

The qualification of this nickel alloy will help build large-scale 3D-printed parts for hypersonic applications.

Nickel superalloys have been important for high-performance defense applications. Fortius Metals’ Reactive Additive Manufacturing (RAM) technology improves alloy grain structure to double IN625 yield strength at room temperature, and increase yield strength up to 50% at 800C, without sacrificing ductility or toughness.

Hypersonic applications are extremely demanding on materials where next-generation alloys are needed. Fortius will print large-format hypersonic prototypes using its advanced IN625-RAM2 and wire Directed Energy Deposition (wire DED) robotic welding cells.

IN625-RAM2 has already been commercialized in metal powder by Fortius Metals’ sister company, Elementum 3D, used with Laser Powder Bed Fusion AM. Material properties have been established for L-PBF and similar results are expected with wire DED. Fortius is developing wire alloy manufacturing at scale and has active commercial contracts to advance their capabilities.

Jeff Lints, Fortius founder and CEO, emphasized the impact of the project to commercialize advanced materials for use in additive manufacturing (AM) for defense applications, stating, “AFWERX’s push to advance AM materials is critical to meet the rapid and evolving defense environment. It stimulates confidence in high-strength nickel superalloys and helps prove out challenging hypersonic applications. The foundational effort to qualify IN625-RAM2 for production will also benefit dual-use capabilities for industrial tooling and space propulsion.”

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