The University of Delaware’s College of Engineering, the Center for Composite Materials (CCM) is, since 1974, an internationally recognized interdisciplinary center of excellence for composites research and academic education.
With the aim of expanding their research, CCM selected Roboze ARGO 500 for its high precision and repeatability in the production of parts with super polymers and composite materials, and for its printing process that is optimized with automatic solutions that are faster than other FFF systems on the market.
The University of Delaware is participating in collaborative research with the Combat Capabilities Development Center US Army Research Laboratory on Additive Manufacturing of high temperature composite FFF. Under this particular program, there are two main focus areas.
1- The development of a modeling and simulation tool to help accelerate acceptance of additively fabricated components. This software tool will take material and process info from the Roboze ARGO 500 and combine that with mechanical and thermal requirements of the desired component. This tool will be used by US Army design engineers to assist them in rapid down-select of design options while providing options to optimize performance for particular use-cases. The US Army and the rest of the Department of Defense (DoD) are interested in increasing the speed of insertion of AM parts into all appropriate logistics chains. Unfortunately, certification and qualification are slow and costly processes, but the University is convinced that this tool will help the DoD partners with speeding up acceptance of AM parts by optimizing this virtual design process that incorporates information directly from the printer.
2- Part fabrication
Larry R. Holmes, Jr., Assistant Director, Digital Design and Additive Manufacturing at UD-Center for Composite Materials, says:
“While we are working to assist in mainstream acceptance of AM in DoD supply chains, there are some missions that have a less rigorous pathway to fielded use. Once such case could be unmanned or autonomous vehicles.”
The University of Delaware will collaborate with US Army on rapid design and fabrication of components for ground and air systems. The implementation of Roboze ARGO 500 will help to perform iterative design and fabrication of mission specific parts, in order to show rapid and low cost fielding of components for these vehicles.
John Gerdes, Ph.D., Team Lead (A) Technology Development & Transition at Vehicle Applied Research Division, US Army Research Laboratory, affirms:
“The Army needs to reduce logistics burdens and find ways to be adaptive to rapidly changing mission needs. Additive manufacturing can meet these needs, but must also offer parts with the durability and dependability that are demanded by soldiers who rely on their equipment to accomplish critical missions.”
While these current collaborative efforts are important, there is a broader perspective to consider, thus the Roboze ARGO 500 will also be used as a teaching and research aid for University of Delaware faculty, staff and students.
Mr. Holmes says:
“Roboze ARGO 500 was selected for our collaborative efforts. We are especially concerned with repeatability and accuracy, and the ARGO 500 helical rack and pinion hardware (beltless system) can help us provide these qualities. We also required the ability to print high performance materials and a broad range of thermal profiles. The ARGO 500 can print all of the materials of interest, from standard FFF materials to fiber reinforced high temperature thermoplastics. We want to assure stability of prints so we need to be sure we have control of the chamber temperature, which this printer promise.”
Technologies: Other Processing Method