Aug 21, 2017 | By Benedict

The U.S. Department of Defense Authorization Bill, which includes stipulations on 3D printing, has passed Congress. The bill requires that the Secretary of Defense brief the House Committee on Armed Services on its plans for additive manufacturing.

In what may prove to be an important milestone in military 3D printing, the U.S. Department of Defense Authorization Bill, which includes requirements for additive manufacturing, has been approved by Congress.

We reported on the proposed bill in Early July, when Congresswoman Elise Stefanek added a number of 3D printing provisions that would open up “potential opportunities [in defense] for additive manufacturing companies.”

Stefanik—representative for New York’s 21st district, a member of the House Armed Services Committee, and chair of the Emerging Threats and Capabilities subcommittee—actually added several provisions to the bill, including those about 3D printing.

Recognizing new technological capabilities such as those afforded by additive manufacturing, the now-approved bill could open up avenues for 3D printing companies looking for defense clients.

“Our district continues to grow as a home to many companies that work with cutting edge technology, and I was pleased to include this language that will benefit the Department of Defense and these manufacturers,” said Stefanik, who met with staff at the Plattsburgh, New York facility of 3D printing company Norsk Titanium in early July to discuss the legislation.

The proposed additive manufacturing briefing will take place by December 1, and will concern the DoD’s plans to develop military and quality assurance standards, its strategy for working with manufacturers (like Norsk Titanium) to research and validate quality standards for 3D printed parts, and its plans to incorporate additive manufacturing into its depots, arsenals, and shipyards.

Congresswoman Elise Stefanek meets with Norsk Titanium

While the bill could benefit several additive manufacturing organizations, Norsk Titanium will be especially pleased with the outcome, having met with Stefanek to discuss the legislation face to face. Earlier this year, the Norwegian company made its first FAA-approved 3D printed parts for the Boeing Dreamliner aircraft.

The modified bill passed the house by a vote of 344-81 on July 14.

“I thank my colleagues in the House, Chairman Thornberry and my colleagues on the House Armed Services Committee for their work on this critical national defense legislation,” said Stefanik. “Our most important job in Congress is to provide for our national defense, and this year’s NDAA is an important step in repairing the damage done to our military readiness.”

You can read the legislation in its entirety here, if you’re into that sort of thing.



Posted in 3D Printing Application



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