Additive Manufacturing for Lightweight, Low Cost Seeker Gimbals
Agency / Branch:
DOD / ARMY
Lightweight gimbal assemblies capable of meeting both thermal and structural requirements in military aviation environments can be accomplished through the use of titanium alloys. However, to achieve a production unit cost not to exceed $600-$1200 per gimbal assembly for a seeker gimbal assembly based on expectations for 20,000 to 30,000 gimbals is very challenging. CalRAM, Inc, a company established to do additive manufacturing, has been developing a near-net shape fabrication process capable of generating titanium components with physical and mechanical properties comparable to wrought titanium. The "tool-less" process called Electron Beam Melting (EBM) manufacturing produces parts directly from CAD files, uses an electron beam as the energy source and melts titanium powder in a heated powder bed. Since the process builds parts one-layer at a time, several details can be integrated into each layer reducing part count. CalRAM's vision to accomplish the high-volume and low-cost targets will be to create a dedicated manufacturing cell based on EBM fabrication coupled with CNC machining, inspection, cleaning and packaging. The goal of Phase I is to develop a recommendation for the leading approach to produce gimbal assemblies for Phase II.
Small Business Information at Submission:
2380 Shasta Ave, Suite B Simi Valley, CA 93065
Number of Employees: