Metal Advanced Manufacturing Bot-Assisted Assembly (MAMBA) Process

Metal Advanced Manufacturing Bot-Assisted Assembly (MAMBA) Process

Award Information
Agency: National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Branch: N/A
Contract: NNX17CM58P
Agency Tracking Number: 174290
Amount: $124,990.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2017
Solicitation Year: 2017
Solicitation Topic Code: H7.02
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
11711 North Creek Parkway South, Suite D113, Bothell, WA, 98011-8808
DUNS: N/A
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Rachel Muhlbauer
 Mgr. Additive Manufacturing
 (425) 486-0100
 muhlbauer@tethers.com
Business Contact
 Robert Hoyt
Title: Business Official
Phone: (425) 486-0100
Email: hoyt@tethers.com
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract
Tethers Unlimited, Inc. (TUI) proposes to develop the Metal Advanced Manufacturing Bot-Assisted Assembly (MAMBA) Process, a robotically managed metal press and milling system used to create precision parts on orbit. This manufacturing process provides an alternative to 3D printing metals in space, which is difficult due to space environment or print quality issues. Instead, the MAMBA-Process relies on an ingot forming technology to create a metal ingot. This ingot can then be milled and machined to form a precision part using a standard CNC milling technique. In order to minimize astronaut time and exposure to the process, the MAMBA-Process will be outfitted with a robotic assistant, using robotic assistance to remove the ingot from the press, to place the ingot in the mill, and to perform tool changes on the mill. The MAMBA effort will also develop a novel process for management and recycling of metal chips in a microgravity environment. Testing of the process technologies will lead to a lab demonstration of ingot formation and milling in the Phase I effort, maturing the MAMBA Process to TRL-3. In the Phase II effort, a full scale engineering unit will be built and tested to begin validating this technology for flight.

* Information listed above is at the time of submission. *

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