Mar.21, 2013

The National Additive Manufacturing Innovation Institute (NAMII) announced Wednesday that they have awarded seven entities $4.5 million in funding for first round of projects.

The NAMII Project Call, which was released on November 27, 2012, at the Defense Manufacturing Conference (DMC) in Orlando, Fla., asked its members to submit additive manufacturing research proposals focused on three technical topic areas: Materials Understanding and Performance; Qualification and Certification; and Process Capability and Characterization/Process Control.

Proposals submitted to NAMII were to address one or more technical topic areas, but had to address all evaluation criteria. Additionally, since one of NAMII's key tenets as established by NCDMM is to promote and provide educational outreach and workforce development training, plans for these components had to be integrated into project proposals as well. For example, additive manufacturing curricula will be developed based on project results for high school pre-engineering courses, as well as community college, undergraduate, and graduate university classes.

The awarded projects "span a variety of metals and polymer additive manufacturing processes and materials with near-term technical achievements impacting multiple key markets within a few months," NAMII officials said in a news release.

The approved NAMII projects are as follows:

One project is "Maturation of Fused Depositing Modeling (FDM) Component Manufacturing". Led by small business part producer, RP+M, this project will provide the community with a deeper understanding of the properties and opportunities of the high-temperature polymer, ULTEM™ 9085. Some of the key outcomes from this project include a design guide; critical materials and processing data; and machine, material, part and process certification.

The second project, "Qualification of Additive Manufacturing Processes and Procedures for Repurposing and Rejuvenation of Tooling" is led by Case Western Reserve University.

This project will develop, evaluate, and qualify methods for repairing and repurposing tools and dies. Die casting tools are very expensive — sometimes exceeding $1 million each — and require long lead times to manufacture. The ability to repair and repurpose tools and dies can save energy and costs, and reduce lead time by extending tool life through use of the additive manufacturing techniques developed by this team.

The third project will be "Rapid Qualification Methods for Powder Bed Direct Metal Additive Manufacturing Processes", is also led by Case Western Reserve University.

This project will improve the industry's ability to understand and control microstructure and mechanical properties across EOS Laser Sintering and Arcam Electron Beam Melting (EBM®) powder bed processes. Process-based cost modeling with variable production volumes will also be delivered, providing the community with valuable cost estimates for new product lines. The outcomes from this project will deliver much needed information to qualify these production processes for use across many industries.

Other projects are:
"Sparse-Build Rapid Tooling by Fused Depositing Modeling (FDM) for Composite Manufacturing and Hydroforming", led by Missouri University of Science and Technology

Fused Depositing Modeling (FDM) for Complex Composites Tooling", led by Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems

"Maturation of High-Temperature Selective Laser Sintering (SLS) Technologies and Infrastructure" led by Northrop Grumman Aerospace Systems

"Thermal Imaging for Process Monitoring and Control of Additive Manufacturing" led by Penn State University Center for Innovative Materials Processing through Direct Digital Deposition.

NAMII will officially announce its next project call at the RAPID 2013 Conference and Exposition on June 10-13 in Pittsburgh.



Posted in 3D Printing Technology

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