NASA Orion rocket

NASA is looking to redefine the capabilities of 3D printing with the integration of around 100 3D printed components on its Orion capsule. The parts were produced in collaboration with Lockheed Martin and experts in the 3D printing field, as well as the Phoenix Analysis and Design Technologies (PADT) office. Vadim Caraiman, in his article on Healthy Throughfare, provides:

According to experts, the technology that will be used to make these parts will be the same that will send humans to Mars. According to Stratasys [3D printing company], these pieces will be made of entirely new materials specially designed to withstand the harsh conditions of space.

Lockheed and the PADT office used extremely resistant materials on these parts to ensure their success. The materials used to produce the objects are capable of withstanding extremely intense temperatures, as well as chemical exposures which might occur off-planet in a deep space missions.

Markforged 3D Printers: Unmatched material strength and resistance.

3D printing has long been used for prototyping across a wide range of industries, but today it is expanding rapidly in scale production. NASA’s implementation of the 100 3D printed parts is exemplary of this. The technology also provides faster part manufacturing. The parts themselves are both much lighter and cheaper than traditionally manufactured components. The freedom of design that 3D printing provides designers is unmatched, according to Scott Sevcik who explains, “We have more freedom with design. The pieces may look more organic, more skeletal…”

The NASA Orion will be used in NASA’s follow-up program for deep space shuttles. These shuttles are designed to enable astronauts with the ability to travel past the International Space Station to the Moon, and even one day, Mars.

More uses of 3D Printing by NASA:


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