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America Makes Announces $2.1M in Funding for 3D Printing Research

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The America Makes Open Project Call 2024 is now open for submissions. The Office of the Under Secretary of Defense, Research and Engineering Manufacturing Technology Office (OSD (R&E)), is providing $2.1 million in funding to support this initiative, aimed at accelerating the development and deployment of AM technologies for both defense and commercial applications.

Project Focus Areas

The Open Project Call focuses on five key areas of additive manufacturing (AM) technology, known as “swimlanes.” These areas—Design, Material, Process, AM Genome, and Value Chain—were identified through a collaborative effort involving America Makes members and working groups over several years. Proposals should aim to advance AM technologies in these areas, demonstrating clear value and measurable success. Area 6 focuses on developing and demonstrating sustainable AM practices and products through design & material selection.

  1. In-Situ Dimensional Verification of Increased Complexity AM Parts
  2. In-Process Sensor Calibration, Characterization Methods, and Operating Limits
  3. Characterizing and Correlating Coupon to Part Material Properties
  4. Novel Low Cost, High Productivity Aluminum Manufacturing
  5. High-Fidelity Prediction of Residual Stress Distribution in Laser Powder Bed Fusion
  6. Analysis of AM Sustainability and Environmental Benefits

There are some interesting trends to be noticed from these focus areas, including increased interest in enhancing in-situ monitoring capability.

A kick-off webinar will be held on June 26th. Final proposals must be submitted by 5 p.m. Eastern on August 16, 2024 through the America Makes website. Lead proposers must be America Makes members by August 1, 2024.

Proposals will be evaluated based on their technical approach, feasibility, and the proposer’s plan for managing data and technology dissemination. Emphasis will be placed on projects that can demonstrate substantial progress and impact within the RFP’s specific timeframes. The maximum period for topics 1-5 is five months (five months of execution plus two months for final reporting). For topic 6, the maximum is 24 months (21 months of execution plus three months for final reporting).

Dr. Brandon Ribic, Technology Director, underscores the significance of these projects, stating, “Sustainable manufacturing practices hold the potential to enhance the value proposition and expand the design benefits of AM technologies.” This project call offers a platform to showcase efficiency improvements in materials, processes, and product qualifications, while also identifying and validating methods that reduce lifecycle costs and benefit the environment.

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