Sciaky, Inc., a subsidiary of Phillips Service Industries, Inc. and provider of metal Additive Manufacturing solutions, has announced that its Electron Beam Additive Manufacturing (EBAM™) technology has helped 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 in September 2012 with a materials research and development initiative to investigate the performance of Ti-6Al-4V with its satellite propellant tank. Following 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,” stated Marilyn A Hewson, Chairman, President and CEO of Lockheed Martin, while addressing attendees of the Aerospace Industries Association (AIA) Supplier Management Council Summer Meeting on June 14, 2016 in Fort Worth, Texas, USA.
“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% reduction in the amount of time needed to manufacture it, a 75% reduction in waste and a 55% reduction in cost.”
Sciaky’s EBAM systems can produce parts ranging from 8 inches (203 mm) to 19 feet (5.79 meters) in length, but can also manufacture smaller and larger parts, depending on the application. EBAM is currently the fastest deposition process in the metal Additive Manufacturing market, with gross deposition rates ranging from 7 to 20 lbs. (3.18 to 9.07 kg) of metal per hour. Plus, with a dual wirefeed option, it is possible to combine two different metal alloys into a single melt pool to create custom alloy parts or ingots. In addition, the mixture ratio of the two materials can be changed to create graded parts or structures.
To read Hewson’s entire AIA Supplier Management speech, visit here: