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Stratasys to Test Performance of its 3D Printed Materials on Lunar Surface

Published on 2024-03-29. Edited By : SpecialChem

TAGS:  3D Printing    Electrical & Electronics     High Heat Materials   

Stratasys to Test Performance of its 3D Printed Materials on Lunar Surface Stratasys Ltd. announced that it will provide 3D printed materials for an upcoming lunar mission. The goal is to test their performance on the surface of the moon.

The experiments are part of Aegis Aerospace, Inc.’s first Space Science & Technology Evaluation Facility mission (SSTEF-1). SSTEF is a commercial space testing service, developed by Aegis Aerospace in Houston, Texas under NASA’s Tipping Point program, to provide R&D services on the lunar surface.

The SSTEF-1 project focuses on technology development for lunar and near-Earth space infrastructure and capabilities. The Stratasys experiments will be sponsored by Northrop Grumman Corporation.

To Assess Performance of PEKK-based Plastic filled with Tungsten

In this moon mission, Stratasys will provide 3D printed samples that will be brought to the lunar surface by an unmanned lander in a carrier structure 3D printed by Stratasys. Three materials will be the focus of two different experiments led by Northrop Grumman.

The first experiment assesses the performance of a sample coupon part made with Stratasys’ Antero® 800NA FDM® filament filled with tungsten. Antero® 800NA is a high performance PEKK-based thermoplastic with excellent mechanical properties, chemical resistance, and low outgassing characteristics. Adding tungsten is intended to provide shielding against harmful radiation such as gamma rays or X-rays.

The second passive experiment is designed to see how 3D printed materials perform in space. It will include Antero® 840CN03 FDM® filament, which features ESD properties for use with electronics and was used on the Orion spacecraft. The experiment will also include a new ESD photopolymer manufactured by Stratasys partner Henkel for use with Stratasys’ Origin® One 3D printers and designed for high-heat environments. The experiment will expose coupon samples of the 3D printed materials to lunar dust, low pressure that can lead to outgassing, and the rapid temperature swings that result from virtually no atmosphere on the moon.

Additive manufacturing is an important technology for space missions where every ounce of weight matters and high performance is essential,” said chief industrial business officer Rich Garrity. “This set of experiments will help us understand how to fully leverage 3D printing to keep people and equipment safe as we travel to the moon and beyond.

Parts will be brought to the lunar surface by an unmanned lander in a Stratasys 3D printed carrier structure made from ULTEM™ 9085 thermoplastic. It is a material also commonly used in commercial aircraft interiors.

Source: Stratasys


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