2014 was the year of 3D printing in the media. Designers printed parts ranging from shoes and rabbits to iPhone cases and food. But at ModernTech we are lucky to work with companies that are thinking outside of the box and disrupting manufacturing supply chains and processes daily. The aerospace industry is no exception and companies like Boeing, Aerojet, Lockheed Martin, GE, and Honeywell are leading the 3DP industrial revolution.
GE Aviation, a leading aircraft engine supplier, recently invested $70 million in their factory in Auburn, AL to create 3D printed fuel nozzles for jet engines. This investment is leading to significant time and cost savings. A fuel nozzle exhibits the potential for additive manufacturing because it is an extremely complex part that is typically welded together. The implications of this application span far beyond individual parts and passing on cost savings to customers. The aerospace industry is discovering how to incorporate additive manufacturing throughout all processes and functions; from prototyping and end-use-parts to end-of-life repairs, to jigs, fixtures, and tooling to aid the manufacturing process.
Check out this video from the International Business Times on how on how Custom Control Concepts is 3D printing with FAA approved ULTEM parts:
We urge that organizations view 3D printing as an additional tool for designers and engineers. It is a misconception that additive manufacturing will replace traditional production methods. Common applications to consider during your evaluation include:
- Jigs, Fixtures & Surrogates
- And more…
On Thursday, February 12, 2015 we are hosting a 3D Manufacturing Technologies seminar in Orlando, Florida to discuss applications for 3D scanning and printing across many industries, including aerospace. Here you can ask Stratasys, ModernTech, or FARO specific questions regarding applications. For more information or to sign up please click here:
For more information on trends in aerospace, please click the button below to download our whitepaper. This whitepaper includes ideas and information for organizations that are currently utilizing or would like to incorporate 3D printing as a competitive advantage.