Month: June 2018
3D printing replacement parts for a nuclear warhead
The W80 nuclear warhead is a small American thermonuclear warhead designed for deployment on cruise missiles. A program has been implemented to extend the life of the warhead, called the W80-4 LEP, or life extension program. Recently the National Nuclear Security Administration (NNSA) gave passing grades to the plans to refurbish certain components as well as to the proposed approach to developing component cost estimates.
The warhead, once refurbished, will be paired with a new cruise missile that is being developed by the US Air Force. Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory (LLNL) is the lead nuclear design agency and is working with Sandia National Laboratories, the lead non-nuclear design agency. The work being done on the warhead is to satisfy military requirements to pair the warhead with the new delivery system and improve the weapon’s safety, security and operational logistics, as well as to maintain effectiveness without the need for additional explosive tests. The first production of the W80-4 is scheduled for 2025.
HP: 3D printing can cut IT’s supply chain carbon footprint
Tech giant outlines measures to meet its sustainability goals
HP has admitted to experiencing “challenges” in regard to its progress on sustainability, but believes innovations like 3D printing and its own PageWide technology can help it reach its green goals.
Speaking at the company’s annual Sustainability Summit in London yesterday, HP’s UK MD, George Brasher, explained how the environmental benefits of “short run printing” could play a part in countering the carbon footprint of businesses’ supply chains.
Industrial giant GE eyes blockchain in fight against 3D-printed fakes
Industrial conglomerate General Electric (GE) wants to use a blockchain to verify 3D-printed parts in its supply chain, according to a recently-published patent filing.
Released by the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) on June 21 and submitted last December, the application outlines a method for integrating blockchains into additive manufacturing – commonly known as 3-D printing – to create a database that validates and verifies the manufacturing process.
In other words, the technology would enable the company to create a blockchain-based manufacturing history that can help with tracking and authenticating 3D-printed objects.
Industry 4.0 manufacturing principles leveraged in disaster areas by Field Ready
In the midst of a severe earthquake that registered 7.8 on the Richter magnitude scale, Nepal was shaken, villages were levelled, avalanches triggered, and millions affected. Nearly 9,000 died, around 22,000 were injured, and 3,000,000 – a tenth of the country’s population – were made homeless. The country sandwiched between India and China was brought to its knees.
As aid and rescue teams from countries near and far descended on Nepal, ‘tent cities’ were erected, and within them, similarly constructed hospitals cared for the injured. These make-shift emergency centres are critical in crises such as this, saving hundreds, perhaps thousands, of lives at each catastrophic event. But they rely, as so many services do, on a consistent electricity supply, something an earthquake-ravaged setting, for example, can hardly guarantee. In one particular clinic in Nepal in 2015, there was an outage. Suddenly the chances of survival for each patient was cut dramatically.
Laser 3D printing process creates plane parts on the fly
Researchers from RMIT University in Melbourne have been using laser metal-deposition technology to build and repair defence aircraft in a process that’s similar to 3D printing.
The team believes the technology could be “game-changing” for the aviation industry
“It’s basically a very high-tech welding process where we make or rebuild metal parts layer by layer,” said Professor Milan Brandt who is working on the project.
Recycle at home with 3D Printing
A new open-source recyclebot can help turn trash into almost anything.
It should be apparent to most people that while plastics are great to design with, they’re hard on the environment. While the U.S. has started recycling programs, the amount of plastic produced every year overshadows what gets recycled. In addition, energy is needed to collect and process materials, which can impede on overall benefit to recycling. Single-use plastics are particularly damaging. Resources and energy for a water bottle, party cup, etc. goes into the trash or back into the recycling stream, while only being used for a single drink. This has led to multiple researchers, engineers, and Makers to look for a better solution.
Ever considered the legal implications of 3D printing in construction?
Imagine a printer in the middle of a construction site programmed with a designer’s plans and specifications to build an entire home from scratch. As concrete is fed into the printing device, a technician hits enter on her computer and a 3D printer starts fabricating the structure’s walls and roof.
The final product will be created almost entirely by pre-programmed software and a movable printer injecting concrete, with no need for human construction workers. This isn’t science fiction, it’s a reality on the cutting edge of construction and technology.
The use of 3D printers in the construction industry will have legal implications that will affect owners, contractors, manufacturers and software developers.
How to set up your own in-house 3D printing facility
In-house 3D printing has been proven to reduce lead times, improve product quality, and cut production costs. In one such award winning application, Ultimaker 3D printers saved Volkswagen Autoeuropa an estimated $160,000 in the space of 12 months. The European car manufacturer is now on course to save over a quarter of a million dollars in tooling costs each year.
To help others reap the benefits of in-house 3D printing, Ultimaker has released a white paper: Getting Started with Office 3D Printing.
The document serves as a guide to desktop 3D printing, troubleshooting questions of software, materials, staffing, logistics, networking and maintenance. As such, it is also suited to new starters in any sector, from aerospace and automotive, through to medicine, architecture, and industrial design seeking to benefit from 3D printing.
Titomic has started testing 3D printing of parts for naval ships
3D printer and market darling Titomic is sailing ahead with a plan to print ship parts for Fincantieri — one of the biggest naval vessel producers on the planet.
Melbourne-based Titomic (ASX:TTT) — which is up around 1125 per cent on last year’s IPO price — is in the “metal additive manufacturing” game.
Its 3D printing technique, Titomic Kinetic Fusion, can build metal parts to customisable shapes for use in a whole range of sectors, from aerospace to sporting goods.
The technology, which was co-developed at CSIRO, can produce parts up to 30 times faster than conventional hardware and can join dissimilar metals together to produce one structure, without the need for welding or joining.