AMT Emerging Technology Center Annex
Sponsored by AMT, the ETC annex in the south hall highlights programs that reimagine domestic machine tool production, demonstrate large scale parts on small format machines, and examine the intersection of additive and traditional manufacturing.
Concrete Base Machine
Can 3D printing and concrete accelerate American machine tool development?
Yes! Researchers in the Manufacturing Demonstration Facility (MDF) at Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) recently developed a vertical machining center (VMC) using 3D printing and concrete as part of a solution to replace difficult to source cast iron machine tool bases.
Making a machine base from a 3D-printed mold and concrete rather than traditional casting drastically speeds up mold production while maintaining, and in some cases improving, the desired stiffness and damping.
With skilled workforce and large casting production – critical components that effect every level of the supply chain – in decline, the U.S. Department of Defense Industrial Base Analysis and Sustainment (IBAS) program created America's Cutting Edge (ACE), a national initiative for machine tool technology advancement and workforce development.
- Leverages additive and traditional manufacturing
- Produces large scale parts on small format machines
- Makes better use of the existing machine tool base
- Partners with the University of Tennessee to develop a manufacturing training program with both online and in-person, hands-on learning.
ACE is intended to help the United States recover the technical and manufacturing leadership position and enable our ability to design and make the machine tools required to produce so many of the products that are used in modern society.” – Adele Ratcliff, IBAS program director
IMTS+ original show FutureView, sponsored by Zeiss Industrial Quality Solutions, features scientists and projects from ORNL MDF.
Learn more at:
Oak Ridge National Laboratory MDF