ADAPT Part of Winning NASA ULI Team Led by NextManufacturing
NASA’s investment helps improve 3D metal printing for aviation
NASA, as part of its Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate (ARMD), selected three university-led teams last month to explore new ways to build and power the aircraft of the future. Colorado School of Mines and ADAPT are part of a team led by the NextManufacturing Center at Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) to explore new ways to use additive manufacturing to reduce costs and increase the speed of mass-producing aircraft without sacrificing quality, reliability, and safety.
This is the second year NASA has asked the academic world to help it achieve its strategic goals through the University Leadership Initiative (ULI). The three teams (including groups from University of Wisconsin–Madison and University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign), will receive about $15 million over three years. Almost $7 million of that will go to the team led by NextManufacturing.
The project, Development of an Additive Manufacturing Ecosystem for Qualification of Additive Manufacturing Processes and Materials in Aviation, will focus on process qualification for laser powder bed fusion 3D printing. The aim is to lower the cost of manufacturing, especially for short-run production and replacement parts, and to encourage economic growth by enabling small contractors to qualify their AM processes and equipment.
Mines/ADAPT researchers will work with ADAPT member company Citrine Informatics to use machine learning to characterize and qualify additively manufactured parts and to help overcome the challenge of creating a scientifically sound basis for qualifying 3D printed parts. This is an important step toward demonstrating how to design and use facilities for efficient, large-scale production of these parts.
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