Additive manufacturing research center opens in Arizona

Concept Laser (Grapevine, TX) has partnered with Honeywell Aerospace (Phoenix, AZ) and Phoenix Analysis and Design Technologies (PADT; also in Phoenix) to open a new additive manufacturing research center for 3D metal printing at Arizona State University (ASU; Tempe, AZ). The research center, located on the Polytechnic School’s campus at ASU, is using the machines for various research and development activities, including materials development and prototyping of complex mechanical and energy systems.

ASU offers the only undergraduate manufacturing engineering degree in the state of Arizona, and is one of the 21 courses that are offered in the U.S. The 15,000-sq-ft. research facility holds over $2 million worth of polymer and metal additive manufacturing (also known as 3D printing) equipment. The lab is equipped with Concept Laser M2 cusing and Mlab cusing machines that are dedicated to 3D metal printing. Unlike conventional metal fabrication methods, additive manufacturing allows fully dense metal parts to be created by melting ultrafine metal powder layer upon layer.

For several years, Honeywell Aerospace has worked with ASU seniors on their capstone projects, with three of these projects being additive manufacturing-focused for the 2016-2017 school year, says Don Godfrey, engineering fellow at Honeywell. “In addition to our own additive manufacturing operations, we have provided mentorship to students in the program and assisted in the procurement of one machine for the school’s new lab,” he adds.

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