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Submarine Manufacturer Cuts Costs and Saves 50% Production Time by 3D Printing Titanium Tank

Sciaky, Inc. has announced that its Electron Beam Additive Manufacturing (EBAM) technology helped International Submarine Engineering (ISE), Ltd. cut significant time and cost from the production of a titanium Variable Ballast (VB) tank versus the traditional manufacturing process.

ISE approached Sciaky after the closure of its former supplier, an overseas titanium forging facility that produced propellant tanks for the Russian space program.

The engineers and project management team at Sciaky immediately put together an aggressive plan to produce a new titanium VB tank for ISE using Sciaky's patented EBAM 3D printing process. In the end, Sciaky helped ISE reduce production time from 16 weeks to 8 weeks, as well as reduce overall costs as compared to retooling with a new forging supplier.

In addition, the VB tank created with Sciaky's EBAM process passed the same vigorous qualification testing as the tank previously created with the forging process. ISE now plans to 3D print other critical titanium parts with Sciaky's EBAM process.

The titanium VB tank is a sub-system of ISE's Arctic Explorer Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV) class of vehicles. The unique VB system enables it to park on the sea floor or hold itself on the underside of ice during missions. Rated to 5,000 meters (roughly 3.11 miles) depth, the Arctic Explorer is designed to remain underwater between missions for extended periods of time.

The VB tank 3D printed with Sciaky's EBAM process will be installed onboard a new Arctic Explorer AUV that is scheduled to be delivered to the University of Tasmania in the spring of 2017. This new Explorer AUV will be deployed in Antarctica after extensive trials and training operations.

"Sciaky is proud to help ISE cut production time by 50 percent and reduce costs by 3D printing their titanium VB tank with our one-of-a-kind EBAM process," said Bob Phillips, Vice President of Marketing for Sciaky, Inc. "Our industry-leading EBAM technology is the world's only industrial-scale metal 3D printing solution with approved parts for land, sea, air, and space applications."

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Sciaky

International Submarine Engineering

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