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EBAM Metal 3D Printing Solution Drastically Reduces Time and Costs on Satellite Part for Lockheed Martin Space Systems

Sciaky, Inc, a provider of metal additive manufacturing (AM) solutions, employed its Electron Beam Additive Manufacturing (EBAM™) technology to help aerospace giant Lockheed Martin Space Systems reduce production time, material waste and overall costs for producing titanium propellant tanks for satellites.

Lockheed Martin Space Systems approached Sciaky back in September 2012 with a materials research and development (R&D) initiative to investigate the performance of Ti-6Al-4V (titanium) with its satellite propellant tank. Over many months of testing, the metallurgical experts at Lockheed and Sciaky were able to identify a solution that would drastically reduce time, waste and costs of the part as compared to the traditional forging method.

"When our Space Systems business area was looking for ways to reduce costs on our satellite parts, while also maintaining product quality, a company called Sciaky came to us with a solution," said Marilyn A. Hewson, Chairman, President and CEO of Lockheed Martin. "We worked together to develop titanium propellant tanks that can be 3D printed through the use of their electron beam additive manufacturing process. The result was a tank that met our customer's performance standards, with an 80 percent reduction in the amount of time needed to manufacture it, a 75 percent reduction in waste, and a 55 percent reduction in cost."

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