“Don't worry about the horse being blind, just load the wagon.”
1. ORNL Takes Additive Nuclear
“Developed by Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL), the method combines binder jet 3D printing techniques with a chemical vapor infiltration (CVI) process that enables the creation of reactor components more efficiently and with greater complexity.” The Seattle-based Ultra Safe Nuclear Corp. (USNC) will use ORNL’s 3D-printing method to print its advanced nuclear reactor core components from silicon carbide, a high-temperature-resistant ceramic that has reportedly been proven to be tolerant to radiation. The binder jet process prints the initial components as a porous substrate (because binder jetting), then fills the voids in the ceramic print via CVI. Simple but smart stuff here!
2. ASTM and America Makes Launch 3 New Additive Projects
“ASTM’s Additive Manufacturing Center of Excellence (AM CoE) is launching three new projects with America Makes, the United States’ national accelerator for 3D printing.” Two of the three projects will be collaborations with the likes of Penn State University’s Applied Research Laboratory (ARL) and Castheon, a process developer of laser powder bed fusion (LPBF). The third project, “Best Practices for Additive Manufacturing Part Families Relating to Product Qualification & Certification,” will be led by America Makes to oversee and support the aerospace and defense corporations involved, including Boeing, Airbus, Raytheon Technologies, Northrop Grumman, and Lockheed Martin, as well as receive support from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and NASA.
3. Pour Some Out for Olli
This hit me in all the feels. I had the pleasure of going for a ride in an Olli autonomous bus back at IMTS 2018, and before that, AMT blessed me with the keys to our own IMTS-branded Local Motors Rally Fighter to recklessly boulevard bomb carefully drive and absolutely obey all traffic laws around Chicago. This fun and passionate company will be missed. I hope we still have the one Rally Fighter – though it could probably use an oil change and alignment by now.
4. The Ninja Takes to the Skies Autonomously
Kawasaki’s proof of concept is the next step in autonomous drone delivery systems, slotting between small-scale, short-range aerial or ground-drone package and meal delivery, and large-scale, long-range, self-driving 18-wheelers hauling literal truckloads of stuff across countries. Keep in mind, just like those other two autonomous delivery systems we haven’t yet seen, this is just a proof of concept!
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