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Wednesday, May 15 • 4:30pm - 5:00pm
Towards Replacement of Failed Parts on the Battlefield via Casting Metals in 3D-Printed Desert Sand Molds

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Additive Manufacturing has changed the face of conventional metal forming technologies. Conventional metal casting involves the manufacture of solid forms or patterns that sand is formed around to develop the shape of the cavity that is filled with liquid metal. The patterns or tooling for castings will often cost as much as 100 times that of the needed casting and require weeks to months to produce. The tools must then be stored, maintained and repaired between uses. Because of the amount of space required and the length of time required for producing patterns, the technology is not conducive to a mobile manufacturing platform. Additive Manufacturing (AM) and digital part creation has allowed the production of castings within days rather than within weeks or months. It has eliminated the need for the lengthy production of costly tooling with requirements for storage space. With the proper tools and training additive manufacturing for metal casting will allow replacement of critical cast components and provide for weapon system sustainability on or near the battlefield. The objective of this project is to show a proof-of-concept of in-theater production of replacement parts for long lead time DoD critical components utilizing a sand 3D-printer with actual desert sand to produce sand molds from a CAD drawing of the actual part, followed by pouring molten aluminum into the casting molds. The parts will subsequently be produced by optimizing the casting mold design, with appropriate gates and risers to allow for successful casting.

avatar for Marc Pepi

Marc Pepi

Materials Engineer, US Army Research Laboratory

Wednesday May 15, 2019 4:30pm - 5:00pm
Freedom Ballroom II