Executive Briefings

Defense Industry Marches Closer to Using 3D Printing to Attack Parts Sourcing

The Pentagon and the defense industry are rapidly expanding the use of 3D printing to make parts and tools for more sophisticated military equipment.

Defense Industry Marches Closer to Using 3D Printing to Attack Parts Sourcing

The technology—which makes manufacturing more agile and wastes very little material—is already being used aboard the USS Essex, a U.S. Navy amphibious assault ship.

“The crew has printed everything from plastic syringes to oil tank caps, to the silhouettes of planes that are used on the mock-up of the flight deck to keep the flight deck organized,” Adm. James “Sandy” Winnefeld, vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said.

The Navy is still “several years away” from being able to print spare parts for ships and airplanes, but “that day will surely come,” he said.

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The technology—which makes manufacturing more agile and wastes very little material—is already being used aboard the USS Essex, a U.S. Navy amphibious assault ship.

“The crew has printed everything from plastic syringes to oil tank caps, to the silhouettes of planes that are used on the mock-up of the flight deck to keep the flight deck organized,” Adm. James “Sandy” Winnefeld, vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said.

The Navy is still “several years away” from being able to print spare parts for ships and airplanes, but “that day will surely come,” he said.

Read Full Article

Defense Industry Marches Closer to Using 3D Printing to Attack Parts Sourcing