Author Topic: 3D printing rocket engines  (Read 81297 times)

Offline Prober

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Re: 3D printing rocket engines
« Reply #100 on: 03/21/2015 01:36 pm »
http://www.mmsonline.com/blog/post/metal-additive-manufacturing-for-parts-up-to-7-feet-tall

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One of the constraints on additive manufacturing machines that make metal parts from powder has been the relatively small build envelope of these machines. Rapid City, South Dakota-based RPM Innovations is now prepared to challenge that constraint with laser deposition additive manufacturing machines that have a build envelope of 5 ×5 ×7 feet. An 83-inch-tall rocket-like part made from Inconel 625 that was grown in one of this company’s machines will be on display in the Advanced Manufacturing Center at IMTS.
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Nearly 80 percent of its applications have been related to aerospace or defense, including aircraft engine components and aircraft structural components for “companies whose names you’d recognize,” he says. Inconel 625, Inconel 718 and titanium 6-4 are among the alloys that the machines apply routinely.

The rocket-like part took around 340 hours to build is approximately 7,000 layers, he says. And to the RPM staff, that is not all that long. “We have had big parts—not as tall as this, but broader and a lot more complex—that took us 1,800 hours to build,” Mr. Mudge says.
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That's impressive given these are high temperature Nickel based alloys but the one I'm thinking of is another electron beam in a vacuum system outfit.

Can't for the life of me think who they are.  :(

does LM use it?
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Offline docmordrid

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Re: 3D printing rocket engines
« Reply #101 on: 03/21/2015 01:47 pm »
Well find out in May at AeroMat

https://asm.confex.com/asm/aero15/webprogram/Paper39823.html

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Test program for adoption of Powder Bed Fusion EBM Ti-6Al-4V at Lockheed Martin Space Systems Co.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015: 11:00 AM
Room 201A (Long Beach Convention and Entertainment Center)
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DM

Offline john smith 19

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Re: 3D printing rocket engines
« Reply #102 on: 03/21/2015 07:47 pm »
does LM use it?
I think they do.
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Offline Prober

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Re: 3D printing rocket engines
« Reply #103 on: 04/15/2015 07:18 pm »
might be some errors in this article, haven't sifted into all the details....Enjoy!

 Built Almost Entirely of 3D Printed Parts, the World’s First Battery-Powered Rocket is Unveiled

http://3dprint.com/58203/rocket-lab-electron-rutherford/

"The launch system, which is used to launch small satellites into orbit, features the electric Rutherford engine, which is the first oxygen/hydrocarbon engine to use 3D printing for all of its primary components, including everything from its engine chamber, to its pumps, main propellant valves, and injector."

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Offline john smith 19

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Re: 3D printing rocket engines
« Reply #104 on: 04/15/2015 07:51 pm »
might be some errors in this article, haven't sifted into all the details....Enjoy!

 Built Almost Entirely of 3D Printed Parts, the World’s First Battery-Powered Rocket is Unveiled

"The launch system, which is used to launch small satellites into orbit, features the electric Rutherford engine, which is the first oxygen/hydrocarbon engine to use 3D printing for all of its primary components, including everything from its engine chamber, to its pumps, main propellant valves, and injector."
I wonder how many people realize how radical this concept is.

They are saying that the total mass of batteries and motors is less than the total weight of propellant and gas generator.

This is a phenomenal  claim.

I wish them every success but realize this is very bold.
MCT ITS BFR SS. The worlds first Methane fueled FFSC engined CFRP SS structure A380 sized aerospaceplane tail sitter capable of Earth & Mars atmospheric flight.First flight to Mars by end of 2022. Forward looking statements. T&C apply. "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof" R. Simberg."Competitve" means cheaper ¬cheap

Offline R7

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Re: 3D printing rocket engines
« Reply #105 on: 04/15/2015 08:07 pm »
I wonder how many people realize how radical this concept is.

They are saying that the total mass of batteries and motors is less than the total weight of propellant and gas generator.

This is a phenomenal  claim.

I wish them every success but realize this is very bold.

Must remember that GG propellant mass at the end of the ride is zero while depleted battery weighs the same as full.

Some W/kg and Wh/kg figures would be nice to go with that claim.
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Offline ArbitraryConstant

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Re: 3D printing rocket engines
« Reply #106 on: 04/15/2015 08:31 pm »
They are saying that the total mass of batteries and motors is less than the total weight of propellant and gas generator.
I'm gobsmacked too but the more I think about it the less trouble I have with it.

I'm not sure it's claimed to outperform gas generator. Rutherford is less thrust than Kestral. The alternative is probably pressure fed, and pressurized gas is even lower energy density than batteries and has other mass penalties.

Where the new electric pumping cycle lives in the trade space is probably closer to pressure fed and expander, not larger gas generator or staged combustion engines.
« Last Edit: 04/15/2015 08:33 pm by ArbitraryConstant »

Offline TrevorMonty

Re: 3D printing rocket engines
« Reply #107 on: 04/15/2015 09:16 pm »
I don't how far these electric pumps would scale but for low cost small engines they seem ideal.

In theory they could dump spent batteries part way through the flight, would be way to go on 2nd stage as it needs to burn for a lot longer.

Offline john smith 19

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Re: 3D printing rocket engines
« Reply #108 on: 04/16/2015 06:14 am »
Must remember that GG propellant mass at the end of the ride is zero while depleted battery weighs the same as full.

Some W/kg and Wh/kg figures would be nice to go with that claim.
Good point.
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Offline Prober

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« Last Edit: 04/22/2015 01:59 pm by Prober »
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Offline Asteroza

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Re: 3D printing rocket engines
« Reply #110 on: 04/23/2015 12:43 am »
As pointed out by others elsewhere, first full scale copper print is a great first step, but this particular print appears to have deformities, probably some slumping involved.

Offline john smith 19

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Re: 3D printing rocket engines
« Reply #111 on: 04/23/2015 06:23 am »
This Is NASA's First 3D-Printed Full-Scale Copper Rocket Engine Part   
A couple of points.

Glenn actually printed in a Copper alloy called GRo84. I can't recall if this is what the SSME combustion chamber was built from or was the next generation alloy they wanted to build the next gen SSME out of.

Historically those chambers were (IIRC) either forged or cast then the channels machined in to the outside but the channels were left open. Sealing them was done by wax filling them then electroforming a Nickel jacket around them. The chamber in the picture also has the close out done in GRo84, which should make it more resistant to issues around expansion mismatch between Nickel and Copper alloys.

IIRC the SSME chambers took something like 18-24 months to make.

One upgrade NASA looked at for SSME was to use wide channels for bulk of the chamber then as you got toward the hottest (throat) section splitting them into pairs. Depending on how and where you did this could save 50% of the turbopump power needed for this task. It would be interesting to see if this chamber incorporates this.

It may not be perfect but given its size a pretty good first effort.

I wonder if they will go the whole hog and hot fire it as well?
MCT ITS BFR SS. The worlds first Methane fueled FFSC engined CFRP SS structure A380 sized aerospaceplane tail sitter capable of Earth & Mars atmospheric flight.First flight to Mars by end of 2022. Forward looking statements. T&C apply. "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof" R. Simberg."Competitve" means cheaper ¬cheap

Offline AnalogMan

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Re: 3D printing rocket engines
« Reply #112 on: 04/23/2015 01:08 pm »
This Is NASA's First 3D-Printed Full-Scale Copper Rocket Engine Part   
I wonder if they will go the whole hog and hot fire it as well?

From the linked article:

"The next step in this project is for Marshall engineers to ship the copper liner to NASA’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia, where an electron beam freedom fabrication facility will direct deposit a nickel super-alloy structural jacket onto the outside of the copper liner. Later this summer, the engine component will be hot-fire tested at Marshall to determine how the engine performs under extreme temperatures and pressures simulating the conditions inside the engine as it burns propellant during a rocket flight."

Offline mvpel

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Re: 3D printing rocket engines
« Reply #113 on: 04/25/2015 01:51 pm »
I got the chance to try "platelet" fabrication technology in 1998-99 when we built this engine, which was LOX cooled, 2400 psia Pc design pressure, 6.6K-lbf.  As can be seen from the photos, individual copper foils were assembled in a stack and then diffusion bonded together.  It wasn't cheap at the time costing about $80K, but we fired it 40 times and it worked well.

Given my employer, and that I work in a building named after him, this immediately brings to mind the work of Raytheon's Percy L. Spencer, who devised the technique of brazing stamped copper plates together to build a multi-cavity microwave magnetron (patent #2458802), rather than machining it from a solid block of copper, in response to an urgent plea from Great Britain for help with air defense radars during WW-II. Additive manufacturing in 1940, in other words.

According to Raytheon: The First Sixty Years, the company bet the farm on this innovation and went on to dominate the radar market during the war to the tune of 80% share, producing up to an unprecedented 2,600 magnetrons a day.
« Last Edit: 04/25/2015 11:30 pm by mvpel »
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Offline john smith 19

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Re: 3D printing rocket engines
« Reply #114 on: 04/26/2015 09:25 am »
Given my employer, and that I work in a building named after him, this immediately brings to mind the work of Raytheon's Percy L. Spencer, who devised the technique of brazing stamped copper plates together to build a multi-cavity microwave magnetron (patent #2458802), rather than machining it from a solid block of copper, in response to an urgent plea from Great Britain for help with air defense radars during WW-II. Additive manufacturing in 1940, in other words.
Correct. People sometimes underestimate how well developed some techniques are because they are only used in quite niche applications. Diffusion bonding of Aluminum is a routine process, but only in some parts of the automotive radiator business, for example.
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According to Raytheon: The First Sixty Years, the company bet the farm on this innovation and went on to dominate the radar market during the war to the tune of 80% share, producing up to an unprecedented 2,600 magnetrons a day.
Note 1 key difference between this approach and others.

Brazing implies a separate layer of lower melting point alloy (the braze) between the shims. Sectioning the finished article would therefor show distinct bond lines between them.

However things like Diffusion bonding and (molten drop based) 3d printing won't have this. This means the structure can operate to the full temperature range of the parent alloys, not the braze layer. . Not important to the Magnetron application. Might be in others. YMMV
MCT ITS BFR SS. The worlds first Methane fueled FFSC engined CFRP SS structure A380 sized aerospaceplane tail sitter capable of Earth & Mars atmospheric flight.First flight to Mars by end of 2022. Forward looking statements. T&C apply. "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof" R. Simberg."Competitve" means cheaper ¬cheap

Offline Prober

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Re: 3D printing rocket engines
« Reply #115 on: 05/03/2015 01:42 pm »
Students to Make History with 3D Printed Rocket Engine   http://tinyurl.com/o5bvhpt

"Late in 2013, Students for the Exploration and Development of Space (SEDS) at UCSD grabbed headlines by hot-fire testing a 3D printed rocket. Mentored and assisted by faculty at UCSD and advisers at NASA, the students designed the Tri-D rocket in just eight months and developed with only $6,800."

"They 3D printed the 8-in diameter engine using direct metal laser sintering of Iconel 718 (a nickel chromium alloy) with help from GPI Prototype Inc and NASA, and successfully hot fire tested it in the Mojave Desert in California. "

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Offline Stormbringer

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Re: 3D printing rocket engines
« Reply #116 on: 05/03/2015 01:48 pm »
I read something in an article on the upcoming SpaceX manned dragon launch abort system test that the lift vehicle in the test will have 3D printed rocket engines.

http://phys.org/news/2015-05-spacex-mile-high-feature-buster-dummy.html

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Called SuperDracos, the engines were made from 3-D printing. It will be the first time that SpaceX fires all eight of them at the same time.

« Last Edit: 05/03/2015 02:16 pm by Stormbringer »
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Offline john smith 19

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Re: 3D printing rocket engines
« Reply #117 on: 05/06/2015 03:56 pm »
I read something in an article on the upcoming SpaceX manned dragon launch abort system test that the lift vehicle in the test will have 3D printed rocket engines.

http://phys.org/news/2015-05-spacex-mile-high-feature-buster-dummy.html
Yes. It's somewhat old news. Musk mentioned it during the unveiling of the Dragon 2.0 capsule. Interestingly he said they didn't start by looking at this technology. They were having trouble getting the conventional approaches to work and someone suggested it.
MCT ITS BFR SS. The worlds first Methane fueled FFSC engined CFRP SS structure A380 sized aerospaceplane tail sitter capable of Earth & Mars atmospheric flight.First flight to Mars by end of 2022. Forward looking statements. T&C apply. "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary proof" R. Simberg."Competitve" means cheaper ¬cheap


Offline TrevorMonty

Re: 3D printing rocket engines
« Reply #119 on: 06/17/2015 11:37 pm »
Blue Origin New Shepard has 400 3d printed parts in it.  From tweet the just posted.
I guessing these parts cover both LV and engine.

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