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3-D Printing Study Shows Promise for Predictive Maintenance

Steel News - Published on Thu, 28 May 2020

Image Source: 3-D Printing
US Army's Combat Capabilities Development Command's Army Research Laboratory researchers have discovered a way to monitor the performance of 3-D printed parts, which tend to have imperfections that affect performance in ways traditionally-machined parts do not. A new study published recently in the International Journal of Advanced Manufacturing Technology showed that the Army could detect and monitor the wear and tear of 3-D printed maraging steel through sensor measurement. These types of measurements help Soldiers maintain readiness because these indicators help predict when parts will degrade or fail, and need replacement.

Army Research Laboratory’s Vehicle Technology Directorate director Dr Jaret C Riddick said "3-D printed parts display certain attributes, due to the manufacturing process itself, which, unchecked, may cause these parts to degrade in manners not observed in traditionally-machined parts. Because of this, it's commonly understood that the use of these parts, in current cases, is meant to be a stop-gap to fill a critical need just as we have seen with 3-D printing during the COVID-19 response. Study points to scientific discovery that ensures readiness in increasingly contested environments where the immediate need for replacement parts places constraints on the time it takes to deliver them from far away. In these cases, Soldiers would opt for a stop-gap to continue the mission rather having to abort the mission.”

This study was led by a team of researchers from the laboratory, the National Institute of Standards and Technology, CCDC Aviation and Missile Center and Johns Hopkins University, who likened cues from the material's performance to a vehicle odometer reading that signals a need for an oil change.

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Posted By : Yogender Pancholi on Thu, 28 May 2020
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