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NASA Develops New 3D Printing Method For Producing Rocket Engine Nozzles

NASA Develops New 3D Printing Method For Producing Rocket Engine Nozzles

NASA Develops New 3D Printing Method For Producing Rocket Engine Nozzles

Alabama, USA: A team of engineers at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center have developed a new 3D printing technique for nozzle fabrication—Laser Wire Direct Closeout.

Though simple in appearance, rocket engine nozzles are convoluted components. Additive manufacturing, as with various parts of aerospace, can reduce the money and time involved in the manufacturing of these nozzles, as they are complex in nature with high manufacturing costs caused by the extreme temperatures they operate in and pressures from the combustion process.

The Laser Wire Direct Closeout uses a freeform-directed energy wire deposition process to fabricate components, and it has the potential to reduce build time from several months to several weeks.

3D printed fuel nozzles are lighter and less costly and also simplify the design, all important considerations in the aerospace industry.

NASA has been working on bringing additive manufacturing into rocket engine production, building up a successful track record testing various components and technologies, as 3D printing continues to pave its path into end-use applications required to satisfy a demanding industry.



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