Army taking 3D electronic printing to the next level

December 5, 2013
By

C4ISR

Army taking 3D electronic printing to the next level

The Army has been making use of 3D printing technologies for a few years, deploying prototyping and printing equipment in mobile laboratories in Afghanistan and developing a system to repair damaged aircraft and ground vehicles in the field.

Researchers at Picatinny Arsenal in New Jersey are working on the next step, employing 3D electronic printing that could allow antennas to be printed onto a helmet or sensors into clothing – as well as the wing of an unmanned aerial vehicle to be printed in a single pass.

The work being done at Picatinny uses an ink jet printer and current-conducting inks to produce such things as an antenna made of silver nanoparticles that can be embedded into a helmet, electronics devices that can be printed onto the side of artillery, fuze elements for munitions, and even batteries, according to a report from Picatinny.

Potential benefits from the research include smaller, lighter electronics and, as with any type of deployed 3D printing, the ability to produce items, as needed, on the spot. They also generate less waste than conventionally produced electronics, said James Zunino, co-chair of the Materials Engineer and Printed Electronics, Energetic, Materials Sensors at Picatinny.

“Instead of having to machine out the groves and put the sensor and the wires in the model, I can just use our printers to print electronics onto the model so they are already embedded,” Zunino said. “You’re not chemically etching away all the material, you’re printing them the way you want them. It’s more environmentally friendly, it’s more cost effective and it’s more time-efficient.”

On a larger scale, electronics printing allows engineers to embed electronics, sensors and antennas into the wing of a UAV as it’s being printed, something that previously required a separate step.

Additive manufacturing, or 3D printing, has been a fast-growing field for several years, being used to produce everything from prosthetics and musical instruments to cookies and somewhat unreliable guns. And although the process has been used to create circuit board and prototypes of electronics devices, actually embedding electronics, particularly high-current electronics, during printing is a recent development.

Article source: http://defensesystems.com/articles/2013/12/03/army-3d-electronics-printing.aspx

Tags:



Wireless Systems

Slideshow

Call Center Support - RPJ Tech provides call center support for any business in Canada. Contact us for further details.

Performance Management System - People Power plays an active role in looking into the performance management system of a company and in bringing about the necessary and desired changes with the of HR tools and other strategies.

Coal Carbonization - After the Evolution of electric heaters and power engines, the use of coal gets limited, though it is still valuable as fuel as in yester years. The coal carbonization helps in decomposing coal to coke.

Water Treatment Plant Design - Priti International offers Mineral Water Purification plant and water treatment plant design basis.We are specialised in Soda Water Plant, Fruit Juice Plant, Confectionary & Bakery Plants, Candy & Chocolate Plant, Flour Mill, Hatchery & Husbandory.