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Relativity Space Takes 3D Printing to New Extremes

Relativity Space Takes 3D Printing to New Extremes

 

What happened?

Traditionally, additive manufacturing has been used in the aerospace industry to print small metal parts, such as brackets and fuel nozzles. But, Relativity Space Inc. hopes to change that scenario by thinking big. The start-up company plans to print entire rockets using state-of-the-art technology. Relativity Space recently acquired a 1-million-square-foot factory in Long Beach and transformed the facility into a “factory of the future” centered around Stargate, a machine developed in-house that it claims is the world’s largest 3D printer. The company has also invested in state-of-the-art artificial intelligence technology and robots to boost production efficiency.

 

Read the entire article: https://bit.ly/3KXOqAa

 

Why is this important?

“By fusing 3D printing, artificial intelligence, and autonomous robotics, we are pioneering the factory of the future,” says Tim Ellis, CEO of Relativity Space. “Disrupting 60 years of aerospace, [we] offer a radically simplified supply chain, building a rocket with 100 times fewer parts in less than 60 days.” Because of additive manufacturing technology, Ellis expects to reduce the part count on a typical rocket from 100,000 to 1,000 components. The company’s six-axis robots can emit about 10 inches of material onto a large turntable fixture every second. The directed energy deposition printing process uses proprietary alloys designed to meet mission-critical performance requirements. Ellis wants to disrupt and revolutionize the traditional way of mass-producing rockets. In the past, the slow production process has relied on complex supply chains, large factories, fixed tooling, and extensive manual labor. The entire assembly process typically takes two years or more. With his new production paradigm, Ellis intends to reduce the development cycle from 48 months to six months and the actual build time from 24 months to two months.

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