Future Trends

DOD Looking for 3D Printing Solutions for Hypersonic Airbreathing Systems

Hypersonic weapons

DOD Looking for 3D Printing Solutions for Hypersonic Airbreathing Systems

The Department of Defense is seeking 3D printing solutions that can build hypersonic airbreathing systems that comply with high temperature and propulsion standards.

Interested parties can propose their technologies by submitting a response to a request for solutions from the Office of the Secretary of Defense’s Manufacturing Technology Program and the Naval Surface Warfare Center. The request was issued as the U.S. tries to keep pace with the progress of Russia and China in developing their own hypersonic weapons, National Defense Magazine reported.

The National Security Technology Accelerator is in charge of managing a consortium responsible for selecting companies eligible to win other transaction authority contracts under the Growing Additive Manufacturing Maturity for Airbreathing Hypersonics challenge. A contract is expected to be awarded in June, after which a three-year prototyping effort will begin.

In October, the OSD said GAMMA-H will advance additive manufacturing processes to meet the demand for hypersonic airbreathing systems and accelerate the adoption of 3D printing solutions. The office added that the program aims to provide small businesses and non-traditional defense contractors the opportunity to engage in defense manufacturing.

According to Tony Kestranek, deputy director for strategic and spectrum missions advanced resilient trusted systems at NSTXL, additive manufacturing will enable more efficient and cost-effective development of hypersonic weapons.

The DOD and the military branches are working on separate programs to counter the hypersonic advancements of U.S. adversaries

Recently, the Russian frigate Admiral Gorshkov carrying a new Zircon hypersonic missile was deployed to patrol the Atlantic and Indian oceans and the Mediterranean Sea. According to Russia, the air defenses of its Western rivals cannot match the speed of Zircon.

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Category: Future Trends