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Archive for the ‘3D printing’ category: Page 103

Dec 2, 2013

New Tech and National Security Law – 3D Printing

Posted by in categories: 3D printing, complex systems, defense, engineering, geopolitics, military

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Monday, December 2, 2013 at 7:00 AM

For those who haven’t been following along, this recent story about 3D printing of plastic guns should be a revelation. 3D printing is one of those technologies where the reality is fast outrunning our imagination. It is, in essence, the ability to construct a product from feedstock using a readily available “printer” linked to a computer where the source code for the product is executed. According the Washington Post’s story, the new plastic guns are capable of firing lethal rounds and, naturally, they are beyond the detection of metal detectors.

But for every “parade of horrible story” about 3D printing there’s also one of great promise. For example, NASA recently announced plans to send a 3D printer to the space station. This development, combined with the development of printing for metal objects (from liquid metal feedstock) means that many of our concepts of logistics will go out the window. If a manufacturer can construct metal parts from an easily transported feed stock then, as Andrew Filo, a consultant with NASA on the 3D space station printing project, said: “You can get rid of concepts like rationing, scarce or irreplaceable.” That’s a truly extraordinary development.

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Dec 1, 2013

GE Turns to 3D Printers for Plane Parts

Posted by in categories: 3D printing, business, engineering, human trajectories, robotics/AI

The GE90 is one of the world’s most powerful jet engines. GE plans to produce 100,000 3D-printed components for the next-generation GE9X and Leap models

General Electric (GE), on the hunt for ways to build more than 85,000 fuel nozzles for its new Leap jet engines, is making a big investment in 3D printing. Usually the nozzles are assembled from 20 different parts. Also known as additive manufacturing, 3D printing can create the units in one metal piece, through a successive layering of materials. The process is more efficient and can be used to create designs that can’t be made using traditional techniques, GE says. The finished product is stronger and lighter than those made on the assembly line and can withstand the extreme temperatures (up to 2,400F) inside an engine. There’s just one problem: Today’s industrial 3D printers don’t have enough capacity to handle GE’s production needs, which require faster, higher-quality output at a lower cost.


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