NASA will benefit from development of in-process sensing and monitoring technologies for powder bed fusion additive manufacturing. Technology will improve quality of processes used to produce critical components, deliver tighter control of manufacturing defects, increase potential for AM material customization, reduce scarp rate and ensure that As-designed equals As-built. NASA's major commitment to AM has included research for improved part production, innovations related to habitat construction, benefits of multi-materials and conductive ink. All of these programs would benefit from the current research. More significantly, much of this working is being undertaken by large and small contractors that support NASA. Commercialization of technology would ensure that benefits of this technology would reach those businesses and support their research and product development requirements. In that regard, ASC will work with existing customers Boeing, Lockheed Martin, Northrop-Grumman and Aerojet-Rocketdyne to apply the technology to active NASA programs.
Numerous federal and commercial entities have committed resources of money and personnel to additive manufacturing research and technology. The proposed effort will support development of an in situ monitoring system for AM. The finished system will enable the operator to monitor quality of an AM job online and assess quality of the finished part. This capacity is needed for product certification and elimination of trial and error. ASC team will work with partners to disseminate information related to the technology within the AM community. Proposed strategy to commercialize innovation would involve a coordinated program between ASC, Dassault Systemes and select hardware manufacturers to transition technology to commercial printers. Combined financial strength of all three parties would ensure the success of the effort. ASC will explore similar partnerships and sales agreements with other vendors. ASC will work with Boeing to apply technology to AM programs associated with other strategic partners