CIMP-3D at Penn State Is Expanding Capabilities in Additive Manufacturing

December 14, 2021

The move benefits DoD, manufacturing and R&D around the U.S.

 

Penn State’s Innovation Park-based Center for Innovative Materials Processing through Direct Digital Deposition (CIMP-3D) is expanding its already-world-class capabilities in metal-based additive manufacturing. It’s a move that will benefit the Department of Defense, American manufacturing companies and researchers around the globe. 

 “The university performs all this great fundamental research, and then has the ability to transition it to full production.” 

“Additive Manufacturing is a highly multidisciplinary technology. With strong capability in both engineering and material science, Penn State is uniquely positioned to innovate in this area,” says Dr. Ted Reutzel, director at CIMP-3D. “The university performs all this great fundamental research, and then has the ability to transition it to full production.” 

CIMP-3D recently installed three, large format additive manufacturing systems: 

  • A multi-laser powder bed fusion additive manufacturing system that fuses metal powders into solid parts. This system makes precise components that are impossible to create using traditional manufacturing techniques. It was installed in support of a program to modernize products for the U.S. Army.
  • A robot-based wire-arc additive manufacturing system with ability to build large components using standard arc welding processes.
  • A cold spray metal AM machine that uses supersonic powder consolidation technology to build or repair parts in minutes instead of hours, all without melting.   

“The university is unique because of the multidisciplinary approach it takes to research, and also because of the sheer breadth of talent working on innovation."

Reutzel says these new systems provide just another avenue for Penn State to lead additive manufacturing research and development. He notes that CIMP-3D works closely with the Applied Research Laboratory (ARL) on projects supporting the Department of Defense, such as developing an understanding of how AM’s unique thermal history impacts microstructure and properties of different materials, to creating techniques to build components with multiple materials that have one set of properties on their interior and another set of properties on their exterior, to provide resistance to corrosion or wear. 

“The university is unique because of the multidisciplinary approach it takes to research, and also because of the sheer breadth of talent working on innovation — folks who model microstructure and properties; engineers that develop innovative, AM-enabled component designs; maker;, processing experts that can build sensors to help accelerate qualification;  experts in materials science and characterization and more. Usually all of those steps can’t be done in one place like they can at Penn State.”

To learn more about the programs and industry-leading research happening at Penn State, visit the websites of the Applied Research Laboratory at Penn State and the Center for Innovative Materials Processing through Direct Digital Deposition (CIMP-3D) at Penn State.

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