3D Printer HardwareCompositesMaterialsThermoplastic PolymersThermosets

JuggerBot 3D awarded $4 Million by Air Force Research Lab

To develop a large format hybrid additive system combining thermoset and thermoplastic extrusion

Stay up to date with everything that is happening in the wonderful world of AM via our LinkedIn community.

Industrial 3D Printer OEM JuggerBot 3D has been awarded $4 million to produce a Large Format Hybrid Material Additive Manufacturing (AM) system. The project, funded by the Office of the Under Secretary of Defense, Research and Engineering Manufacturing Technology (OSD(R&E)) and awarded by the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) aims to drive technologies that will radically lower the cost of manufacturing, produce lighter-weight vehicles, and that will scale manufacturing to the speed of relevance.

The overarching goal of this concentrated effort is to develop a state-of-the-art, hybrid, large-scale AM system that incorporates both two-part resin and pellet-fed material extrusion technologies, capable of processing both advanced thermoset polymers and performance-grade thermoplastic materials.

JuggerBot flying with the Air Force

A member of America Makes, JuggerBot 3D will collaborate with the Institute, which works to accelerate the adoption of AM and advance the nation’s global manufacturing competitiveness.

JuggerBot 3D awarded $4 Million by Air Force Research Lab to develop a large format hybrid AM system combining thermosets and thermoplastics
The America Makes Building in Youngstown, Ohio. Photo courtesy of JuggerBot 3D

A critical line of effort to achieve the goals of the project is the maturation of composite AM, particularly with high-temperature structural epoxies and other engineered thermoset resin materials in combination with thermoplastic resins. Advances in the ability to print a thermoset composite material will transform the way aircraft structure is designed, fabricated, and sustained for limited-life aircraft.

“The Institute is proud to partner with JuggerBot on this effort,” said Brandon Ribic, Technology Director, America Makes. “We have observed the benefits and impact of large-scale AM technologies for various aerospace applications within the last two years and are eager to learn how JuggerBot will leverage their advanced hybrid AM technology and accelerate our domestic manufacturing capabilities in an industrially relevant manner.”

Additionally, funding has been allocated to leading polytechnic institutes and key players with large-format thermoset extrusion for support in material characterization, predictive modeling, and process parameter validation for both thermoset and thermoplastic materials. Project partners are to be announced at a later date.

AM advancements with hybrid materials

Direct Ink Writing (DIW) offers a significant opportunity in AM, as it is used to process advanced thermally cured thermoset materials with properties addressing gaps in the traditional 3D printing process. One key aspect of this project focuses on the development of comprehensive material and process models that will allow a better prediction of material deposition characteristics and resultant critical component properties. JuggerBot 3D will evolve from their commercial platform, the Tradesman Series, and develop a hybrid additive system that incorporates both their industrial pellet-fed extruder systems that process a wide range of performance thermoplastic materials, and a two-part resin dispensing system that can process thermoset materials at scale.

JuggerBot 3D awarded $4 Million by Air Force Research Lab to develop a large format hybrid AM system combining thermosets and thermoplastics
Direct ink writing (AKA pneumatic/screw extrusion) of thermoset (paste) materials.

“Finding success with this project will generate significant value for the U.S. Air Force and the broader additive manufacturing industry by showcasing the use of thermoset and thermoplastic hybrid extrusion,” stated JuggerBot 3D President and Co-founder Zachary DiVencenzo. “This initiative will expand upon the achievements from previous programs we have taken on in both faculties. We are excited to leverage our expertise once again to meet the industry’s critical requirements and look forward to growing our team while collaborating with project partners throughout this program.”

Over the next 24 months, the JuggerBot 3D team will advance this technology and participate in several technical session presentations with other key project partners to demonstrate pinpoint equipment capabilities.

“Designing and developing this novel technology for large format composites will enhance the Aerospace and Defense Industrial Base to reduce time and cost associated with the production of critical parts in a timeframe urgent to meet the needs of their industry. We are proud to bring this work to Youngstown for its direct ties to America Makes and its contribution of additional jobs and economic development to the Northeast Ohio region,” noted DiVencenzo.

Research
Composites AM 2024

This new market study from VoxelMatters provides an in-depth analysis and forecast of the three core segments of the composites additive manufacturing market: hardware, materials and services. The ...

Davide Sher

Since 2002, Davide has built up extensive experience as a technology journalist, market analyst and consultant for the additive manufacturing industry. Born in Milan, Italy, he spent 12 years in the United States, where he completed his studies at SUNY USB. As a journalist covering the tech and videogame industry for over 10 years, he began covering the AM industry in 2013, first as an international journalist and subsequently as a market analyst, focusing on the additive manufacturing industry and relative vertical markets. In 2016 he co-founded London-based VoxelMatters. Today the company publishes the leading news and insights websites VoxelMatters.com and Replicatore.it, as well as VoxelMatters Directory, the largest global directory of companies in the additive manufacturing industry.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button
Close Popup
Privacy Settings saved!
Privacy Settings

When you visit any web site, it may store or retrieve information on your browser, mostly in the form of cookies. Control your personal Cookie Services here.

These cookies are necessary for the website to function and cannot be switched off in our systems.

Technical Cookies
In order to use this website we use the following technically required cookies
  • PHPSESSID
  • wordpress_test_cookie
  • wordpress_logged_in_
  • wordpress_sec

Decline all Services
Save
Accept all Services

Newsletter

Join our 12,000+ Professional community and get weekly AM industry insights straight to your inbox. Our editor-curated newsletter equips executives, engineers, and end-users with crucial updates, helping you stay ahead.